Prehistoric Poltergeist (Product Cycle) (ii)

The figure is a gold-coloured render of a 3D scan of the Homo Heidelbergensis model from The Collection in Lincoln, data published for free as part of Oliver Laric’s ‘Lincoln 3D Scans’ project. It is surrounded by a rotating ring of 55 iPhone 5s (now obsolete) that wildly disperse and reorder on a 25 frame loop. The truncated title with absurd punctuation and numbering draws parallels between the opaque obscurification of vogueish art and the desperate attention-grabbing needs of the technology marketeer, both trying to inspire consumer lust. The chromatic noise background nods towards the famous scene from the 1982 film Poltergeist in which a young girl begins conversing with the family’s television set, which is transmitting static following a sign-off. The GIF asks: in our bloated middle age, will we laugh like old software billionaires at our impoverished early experiments in simulation? Will we find ourselves counter cultural aristocrats in a continual virtual 60s, an immersive orgy of pleasure and ecstasy? Or will we spot our smartphones and peripherals in the survivor’s hand cart, covered in grime, in the darkness, relics from a distant era, repurposed as bat, blunt instrument, spade?

Tom Pounder