By Daniel Froidevaux and Elisa Gonzalez                                                                                                                                    Two Channel video installation with immersive sound                                                                                                            6.5min HD video projected, 4min HD video on a monitor

In a remote region of West Virginia called the National Radio Quiet Zone, a government mandated radio quiet area is home to the world’s largest steerable radio telescope, and is attracting a community of people who believe they suffer from an extreme electrical sensitivity. This unique environment is both a center for scientific discovery and a growing refuge for those looking to escape the effects of technological progress.

This installation is designed to reflect the unique aspects of this environment calling attention to both the visible and audible evidence of the two distinct communities’ attempts to control, mitigate and record the radio environment around them. Sound recordings made using induction microphones capable of recording electromagnetic frequencies represent the invisible, inaudible radio environment of the quiet zone. Images of the telescope and control room are presented in an order which simulates the path of radio waves as they enter the parabolic dish of the telescope and are reflected, received, and transmitted from analogue signal to digital code.

The Quiet Zone is a space to contemplate the tenuous connection between an extremely sensitive technology, the Greenbank telescope, and a group of people whose sensitivity reflects our own concerns and ambivalence about the permeation of communications technology.

*The Quiet Zone installation showed at the Pierre-Francois Ouellette Art Contemporain in Montreal, 2013 and at the Ryerson Image Center in Toronto in 2016.