12 262. 2018

#Problems of research and intervention in the natural environment

Multimedia installation, 8 min 41 sec

This work is a dedication to the legendary Soviet project—the Kola Superdeep Borehole, located a few kilometres away from the city of Zapolyarny, Murmansk region, inside the Arctic Circle. The borehole was purely research-oriented, and by the time the Soviet Union collapsed it was the deepest in the world having reached 12,262 m. After the operation stopped, the borehole was abandoned and plundered, with its almost inaccessible ruins attracting occasional urban explorers. While SG-3 remained active, its operation was shrouded in legend, mystery, and hoax. In fact, numerous acoustic researches were conducted there—earth wobble and wave propagation attracted researchers no less than geology did.

The project is a sound installation that uses data decoded from a found punched tape in real time. It is unknown what exactly is written on the tape, since it is impossible to find a system supporting punched tapes adapted for modern computers. The artist designed a digital optical system, capable of reading coded information. The installation’s master controller, directed by a special algorithm, gradually deciphers the tape and gives commands to five kinetic sound generators, which are miniature drilling mechanisms. Upon receiving the command, each of them starts drilling small fragments of the rock sample from the borehole. During the scientific station’s years of operation, tons of rock samples were quarried from it for research purposes, becoming trophies for geology lovers after the station closed down. The drilling sound from small fragments split away from such samples is amplified, processed, and thereby becomes the base for the infinite sound composition created by the object.

This installation is a kind of a drilling rig model, an artwork combining media archeology and geology, kinetic art and myths of a collapsed empire, sounds of mechanisms and darkness of deep depths.



Dmitry Morozov aka ::vtol:: (b. 1986, Moscow) is a transdisciplinary artist and researcher who focuses on contemporary media arts including sound, robotics and installation, placing special emphasis on the link between emergent systems and new kinds of technological synthesis. :&…