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Collection

David Haines

(England, Australia 1966 – )

Joyce Hinterding

(Australia 1958 – )

Title
The outlands
Year
2011
Media categories
Time-based media, DVD, Installation
Materials used
interactive digital projection, bespoke gaming software, computer, controllers, twigs, table
Edition
1/3
Dimensions

dimensions variable

Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Credit
Anne Landa Award and Contemporary Collection Benefactors 2011
Accession number
307.2011.a-d
Copyright
additional sound: Rosy Parlane, Michael Morley and Danny Butt
Location
Not on display
Further information

Haines and Hinterding's visually stunning 'The outlands' invites visitors to take control and conduct their own voyage through an immersive digital world of forests, islands, and futuristic interior architecture. Clasping the tree branches that sit atop a console table, the viewer navigates through each zone, encountering portals into the other worlds configured within the work. While appearing to be a video game, what are startlingly absent are weapons, bodies and aggression. The logic of killing and winning that structures gaming no longer exists, and is replaced with the process of moving through each digital environment and at times suddenly being transported into an adjacent world. Exploratory voyaging becomes the subject of 'The outlands' and a close attention to the digital environments portrayed within it.

With an interest in the natural landscape and cyber environments Haines and Hinterding converge the two in their impressive projects. Rather than the reactive and violent zones of video games 'The outlands' is a virtual journey which rewards unstructured movement and adapts to audience interaction. As the work uses an open world model to generate the environment, the landscape or architecture is often unpredictable as it changes from one navigation to the next.

The colour in the work is unnatural, signaling the constructed nature of what we are seeing. The forest scenario for example is an intense saturated blue that is beautiful and immersive and, like an Yves Klein ultramarine, somewhat other worldly. It enhances the dream like feel of the work, of the sublime nature of this environment. In contrast the prismatic architecture of the built world is sharply artificial and futuristic, but equally fictional in appearance. The perfection of digital environments is expressed in this 'The outlands' which, with the removal of the death logic of gaming, becomes almost Utopian in feeling.

Bibliography (4)

Christopher Allen, The Weekend Australian, 'Modern life's destination unknown', pg. 11-12, Canberra, 18 Jun 2011-19 Jun 2011, 11, 12 (colour illus.).

Christopher Allen, The Australian, 'Video takes the prize for creativity', p.16, Canberra, 27 May 2011, 16 (colour illus.).

John McDonald, The Sydney Morning Herald, 'Among the outliers', pg. 16, Sydney, 02 Jul 2011-03 Jul 2011, 16. 'Spectrum' section.

Justin Paton., Unguided tours: Anne Landa Award for video & new media arts 2011, 'Notes from an unguided tour' and 'David Haines & Joyce Hinterding', Sydney, 2011, front cover (colour illus.), 9-11, 40 (illus.), 41, 42-45 (colour illus.), back cover (colour illus.).

Exhibition history (1)

Unguided Tours: Anne Landa Award for video and new media arts 2011, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 05 May 2011–10 Jul 2011