With the introduction of the internet into mainstream American society, Eng experimented with making art for the net ‘new media‘ from 1997. Some of these projects included: Slant.org (Asian American artists against censorship) Bombs (reaction to the bombing of Belgrade) and 2 commissioned works: Empty Velocity and Buddha Hotel and a recent videoblog commission, UAPD.
Commissioned as a web project for Turbulence.org in 1999, Empty Velocity was later installed at Moving Imaging Gallery as a web based installation the following year. Mimicking the lobby of an airport, viewers gazed with headphones at a projection of the live site while one viewer navigated. A processed video of tai-chi mixed with graphical layouts of airport charts looped on a screen. Sumi ink paintings of various types of body energy paths were painted on airport emergency cards mounted on the wall.
Empty Velocity is a project dedicated to the digital nomad experiencing emptiness, impermanence and ubiquity. Readings of Taoism, Buddhist philosophy, and contemporary discourse on sociological effects of the technological era supported the development of the site. Charts of airport layouts are the foundation of each screen in which text and animation are overlaid. Taoist text is quoted and paralleled to an action or experience of the digital individual. “By not setting foot outside the door, one knows the whole world…”, “Moving in one direction simultaneously aware of other possibilities…”, “Open and closed simultaneously”.
Images of transport accidents are interspersed in the background to illustrate the Yin and Yang of all things in the world including movement and interactivity. Speed a reoccurring image throughout the site is balanced with captured images of tai-chi movement. By combining these forces of technology and the wisdom of emptiness the site ultimately describes the contradictory nature of life.
BUDDHA HOTEL, 2000
Alternative Museum Digital Art Commission
BuddhaHotel is a place where the digital nomad can recuperate. Inspired by Tibetan Thanka painting which is believed to have the power to heal through visual art forms, BuddhaHotel combines Eastern medicine with contemporary forms of illness.Through these healing rooms moving images surround the walls to inhibit a balance of changing perspectives.
The site uses VRML, a 3D navigation program and requires the plugin and a PC to properly view the site. It is necessary to wait until the images load on the walls before navigating. Failure to wait will result in the program to malfunction.