Journey to the Centre Of… 35.1264°N, 33.4299°E (point centre)

Photo credit: Chrysoulla Photography

Journey to the Centre Of… 35.1264°N, 33.4299°E (point centre)
Machine learning generated video and digital video on HD 16:9 monitor laying facing up on floor
Kypros Kyprianou (2023)

This piece is part of Journey to the Centre Of…, one of a series of films in which I travel (both vitually and physically) to the middle of somewhere and point at it.

Journey to the Centre Of… 35.1264°N, 33.4299°E (point centre)

In Journey to the Centre Of… 35.1264°N, 33.4299°E (point centre) (2023) a hand points into space hovering around a central point, both pointing towards and obscuring the destination of a journey recorded from Google Earth. It travels from a distance of 65117481 km away from Earth, to 50 metres above the ground at 35.1264° N, 33.4299°. The centre point of the journey and the finger is the point centre of Cyprus as deemed by Google – the longitude and latitude of the title. The altitude stops at 50 metres, the resolution from space of images for non-military consumer use.

The movement of the hand is generated by an AI that was given the task of making a three dimensional image from a photo of a real finger pointing at a flat map on screen. When the Earth on screen is small, it treats this flat Earth as a small blue marble, giving it a three dimensionality that gets pushed around by the finger in space. It tries to treat the hand and finger as wholly three dimensional, and tries to keep the point at which the finger touches the screen dead centre. The movement this creates is as much a fiction as the visualisation of space of the Mercator projection that Google maps use.

The final ‘scene’ dispenses with the machine learning and introduces my rawactual hand pointing on the raw-actual ground at 5.1264° N, 33.4299° E. It was filmed shortly before the UNLAND exhibition opening, when, after 3 years, I finally got to travel there.