cathedral is an interactive/nonlinear video documentary focusing on Robert Schuller's Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California. The interface exhibits three looped videos on screen at the same time. These are randomly chosen from an archive of 24 clips and the ensuing juxtapositions deny the purposeful narrative structures inherent in a typical documentary. At times the work creates a rather pious depiction; other times the work feels rather cynical. Depending on your personal relation to religion and the luck of the draw, the relationships can be rather unnerving.

As the piece runs, icons on the bottom of the screen cross paths and chose videos from the archive. The viewer has the option to interact by rolling the cursor over those same icons, thus adding to the mix. But the icons are constantly changing; the juxtapositions can never be anticipated.

If the viewer clicks the triangle to the right, the icons stop moving, the videos become stable and change only occurs through viewer interaction. In this way the viewer gains control and can consider the assemblage at leisure, though still has no way to anticipate which clip will occur in which position.

 

There are two versions of cathedral on this site: the dial up version uses video stills linked to sounds, the high speed version uses 5fps video clips with sound. The two offer markedly different interpretations of the original made for CD version.

 


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