Mark Hansen and Ben Rubin’s Listening Post won the Ars Electronica prize and was described to me in email as one of the most beautiful works of electronic literature ever. It’s found literature really: bits and pieces from chat rooms and discussions that start with the words “I am” or “I like” or “I love” are displayed glowingly across a space as they’re read aloud by a single computerised voice (male, British accent). As more and more phrases tick in the words build up against the music as a calm ocean of voices. Or was that just because the second video had loaded in a browser window I wasn’t watching and so its sounds mixed with the one I was watching? You see, I’ve not seen Listening Post, I’ve only watched the videos, which are indeed rather beautiful.

4 thoughts on “listening post

  1. George

    I saw it in Boston, and it was absolutely mesmerizing.

  2. marius watz

    I had a chance to see Listening Post at the Ars Electronica exhibition, and it is indeed wonderful. An instant classic. People would lie down and watch it for long periods of time, a level of engagement most artworks find it hard to achieve these days. The found literature aspect is wonderful, and the visual presentation is near-perfection.

  3. Jill

    Yes, I showed my students the first video of it, and it was even more obvious than it was when I saw it alone that a LOT is missed by not being there. I hope I’m able to see it properly some day.

    Thanks for the link, George! I missed that post when you blogged it, or perhaps I read it speedily, connected it to nothing and forgot it.

  4. andrew stern

    Like George I too saw Listening Post in Boston, and thought it was impressive, very artful and technological. My s.o. Tania, who usually finds art-tech work cold and off-putting, much enjoyed it.

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