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Week 3

Presentation 1 and artist research

This week we had a presentation by an artist related to the topic of time, made by Miranda. I liked the selection of artwork included in it, it gave a lot of different points of view to consider about the topic of time. My favourite artworks were: Roman Opalka, Details, 1965 – 2011, Katie Paterson, Future Library, 2015, Olafur Eliasson, Your Waste of Time, 2006, Tehching Hsieh, One Year Performances, 1978 – 1986 and Peter Tscherkassky, Outer Space, 2009.

Olafur Eliasson, Your Waste of Time, 2006

In this project, Olafur took several blocks of ice from Vatnajökull, the largest glacier in Iceland, removed from the glacial lake Jökulsárlón, into which Vatnajökull flows. Weighing 6 tonnes in all, the blocks were transported to the Berlin gallery, where they were exhibited in a refrigerated space.

In this project, the artist took upon the topic of describing time. In conversation, it tends to take away the duration from it, as it is mostly described as an idea or concept. The idea of time becomes even more abstract if you start thinking about it in the concept of the history of our universe. The glacier that Eliasson took the ice blocks from was formed around 2 500 years ago.
So when the audience had a chance to touch these blocks of ice, they were not only struck by the chill but also by the world itself. “Waste of time” has two meanings in this artwork; the first one was the fact that he shipped the ice across the world for it to be viewed for a short period of time; and the second way in which time is wasted is the fact that they take away from the glacier by touching it. By touching it they embody their knowledge by establishing physical contact. That creates the capacity to understand the abstract with your senses. Touching time is touching abstraction.

Another side of Eliasson’s project is the global warming problem. By encouraging the audience to touch and engage with ice he brought up the reality of human-driven climate change. A touch of human warmth is enough to begin to decay the ice. “Your waste of time” becomes an artwork that curates a sense of environmental care through interactions.

Roman Opalka, Details, 1965 – 2011

Roman Opalka was a conceptual artist from Poland, who devoted the majority of his artistic career to creating a sequence of numbers that represented the passage of time. Starting with the digit “1” in 1965, he diligently painted nearly 400 consecutive numbers every day. By the time of his passing in August 2011, Opalka’s extensive numerical series had reached an astounding 5,607,249, a testament to his lifelong dedication to his craft.

In 1972, Roman Opalks decided to make each canvas 1% whiter than the one before, so that at one point he would end up painting white on white, something he called “blanc merité (well-deserved white). He achieved his goal in 2008, and the numbers painted during the last three years of his life are all white on white.

Roman Opalka described his impossible challenge of painting to infinity as a metaphor for human existence. “Time as we live it and as we create it embodies our progressive disappearance. We are at the same time alive and in the face of death — that is the mystery of all living beings,” he wrote in a 1987 essay.


For my project for this semester, I want to create a time-lapse video of still life composition with elements that will change their appearance by the influence of time. I think it’s a perfect way to show time, instead of going into a conversation about what time is, I want to show its effect and how it passes. And compare it with elements that are still- not influenced by time.
With that intention, I want to create a still-life composition so this week I went to charity shops and bought elements perfect for it.
Here are some photos of the still objects I will be using for this project. I will add to them some flowers and fruit that will be changing through the influence of time. With these photos, I was also trying to figure out the composition and what kind of frame I want to have in this video.

Time-lapse video -theory

Time-lapse video is something new to me so I read a couple of articles about how to do it properly. Here is a link to the most useful one.

I also summarised the general process of creating any time-lapse video and what it is. 

A time-lapse video is a series of photos taken over a period of time and then stitching them together into a video that plays back at a faster rate than the original sequence. The general steps to make a time-lapse video:

  1. Choose your subject: such as sunrise or sunset, clouds moving across the sky, flowers bluming etc. (In my example dying flowers)
  2. Set up your camera: Set up the camera on a tripod in a stable location where it won’t be disturbed. Make sure the camera is fully charged and has enough memory card space to capture all the photos.
  3. Choose your interval: Determine how often to take a photo. The interval will depend on how fast the time-lapse video will play back.
  4. Adjust camera settings: Set the camera to manual mode and adjust the settings for exposure, aperture, and ISO. 
  5. Start taking photos: Start taking photos at the chosen interval and continue for as long as it’s needed to capture the entire sequence.
  6. Import photos: Import all the photos into video editing software.
  7. Create the time-lapse video: Select all the photos and drag them onto the timeline in the video editing software.
  8. Edit and enhance the video.


During this week I also tried to make one time-lapse video on my phone. It was way easier than all of that because on iPhone you just have a setting to create such a video. I can’t use this, unfortunately, to create my project because my shooting time will probably take a week or even longer so I can’t really leave my phone in the same place for so long.

But here is a result of that. It’s nothing amazing I was just trying out how it looks. It’s the view from my window and the quality isn’t amazing because I have dirty widows. But I really like the movement of shadows and clouds.

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