Gary Hill

Dervish, 1993-1995

Gary Hill
Dimensions and medium
Wood, aluminum, mirrors, strobe light, motor, 2 video projectors, 2 loudspeakers, computer, software and videodiscs, 2/2, Variable dimensions
Artwork description
As viewers enter Gary Hill’s video and sound installation Dervish, a motion sensor triggers an image turbine placed at the centre of a tower structure hidden by the darkness of the room. An incandescent lamp behind the tower casts a dim light on the apparatus just before the piece is set in motion. Two video projectors point to the turbine’s spinning mirrored box, creating fragmented images that are reflected onto the surrounding walls at high speed, along with a flickering strobe light. The image projections move horizontally on a curved wall, at times intersecting and overlapping. The sound effects of muffled incantations and broken monologues add to the noise of the motor’s centrifugal action, the turbine, and the ventilation. The installation, whose title evokes the trance-like dance of the whirling dervishes, maintains a constant rotating action that keeps viewers in a state of agitated, heightened awareness of their own sensory processes.

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