Listening Device / Unknown Device
2022, inked zinc plate, filtered spotlight, 19.5*9.7 cm
2022, smoked paper, drawing pins, filtered spotlight, 52*66 cm
Listening Device (left) / Unknown Device (right), 2022, Installation view
Listening Device, 2022, detail
Unknown Device, 2022, detail
The listening jar is an ancient Chinese military detection device, likening the modern geophone. Placed underground, the jar-shaped device amplifies the resonance generated by vibrations, thus enabling awareness of events and potential threats at a distance.
Perceiving beyond the materiality of our visual and tactile senses, the ephemerality of sound and the subjectivity of listening avail the emergence of an uncanny, otherworldly presence. Our thoughts and assumptions of these phantom passings blur the boundaries of reality and hallucinations.
This duality of presence and absence is further reinforced in the material process of etching and inking, and the imagery itself. Drawing attention to the media and tools that co-create the world and our perceptions of it, the narrative is carried indexically through an implicit story of how marks were made. The smoked marks become a smoke screen for the evidence - a disguise of unknown information, or an encryption of the message.