landscape / enter / life - 2020

HD Video

Duration: 17:43 continuous loop

landscape / enter / life (1999-2020) and The Observer (1999-2019) mark a voyeuristic return to Emergence: a computer system that Allen developed in the late 1990’s, able to generate artificial life - an AI system that simulates life-like behaviours of animated artificial lifeforms. With these works Allen has created new contemplative videos akin to moving paintings that form a narrative through the same synthetic, unfamiliar world as The Bush Soul series. 

The viewer’s experience draws attention to the abstracted nature of the natural landscape which is designed in opposition to our obsession with the hyperreality in most CGI and game environments, and to the abstracted life-forms with their own rules of behaviour. In these works, the viewer becomes an observer to this closed artificial world and the life that inhabits it and, unlike The Bush Soul, is unable to influence or change its pattern of events.

Derived from The Bush Soul/Emergence landscape, in landscape / enter / life (1999-2020) we are offered a guided view of the virtual world from three distinct perspectives. Initially we find ourselves flying above an uncanny abstracted landscape. Our gradual descent is an invitation to enter this world, and once on the ground we confront the artificial life that inhabits it more directly.