Pornographic Pursuit 2


The participant stands in front of a screen with a video of Marilyn Monroe. To advance the video the viewer has to run. The faster he/she runs, the closer to the normal speed (30 fps) the video plays. Marilyn in the video strips to her panties and plays coquetishly with a coke bottle and an apple, flirting with the camera/viewer. When the viewer stops running, the video starts playing backwards slowly. As the audience gathers, the viewer soon realizes that he and his pursuit became the spectacle.
When the viewer stands still, walks or doesn’t run fast enough the video plays in reverse until it reaches first frame and is stopped.
This installation uses footage from Bruce Conner’s film “Marilyn Times Five”.


William James and Carl G. Lange first proposed that a conscious emotional experience is a result of, not a reason for, a bodily response to an external stimuli. They theorized that as a response to experiences in the world, the autonomic nervous system creates physiological events such as muscular tension, a rise in heart rate, perspiration, and dryness of the mouth. Emotions, then, are feelings which come about as a result of these physiological changes, rather than being their cause. James set out by asking ‘do we run from a bear because we are afraid or are we afraid because we run?’ He argued that we are afraid because we run.

We can sense what is going on inside our body much the same as we can sense what is going on in the outside world. The unique pattern of sensory feedback gives rise to emotions and gives them their unique quality. The mental aspect of emotion, the feeling, is a slave to its physiology, not vice versa: we do not tremble because we are afraid or cry because we feel sad; we are afraid because we tremble and are sad because we cry.

This controversial theory of emotions has been recently reiterated by Antonio Damasio, and while the nature of emotions is yet to be fully understood, it is clear that many emotional stimuli appear to be processed on a non-conscious level, only later to become available for conscious introspection

In this project the physiological sensation returned to the brain is that of arousal. The invigoration of the physical exertion, the excitement of a performer, the titillation of a player in a game are juxtaposed with the expectation of a feeling (and its physiological expression) suggested by the video content.

Related projects:

The following smaller projects were created around the same time, and were similarly exploring the mapping of a meaningful action required for interaction to a change in the visual or auditory content.

Pornographic Pursuit 1

found footage shot from Bruce Conner's film 'A movie'

In this installation (a precursor to Pornographic Pursuit 2), the viewer approaches a computer which displays a black and white classic image of a woman taking off her stocking. The image is the first frame of a movie.
As the viewer moves the mouse around he/she discovers that the movie advances one frame when the mouse is moved horizontally over a screen. To see the movie play close to the regular speed (30 frames per second), to see the woman take her stocking off, one has to repeatedly and quickly move the mouse horizontally back and forth. When viewer stops moving the mouse, the movie starts playing in reverse until it reaches the first frame and is stopped.  The movie of the stripper is a found footage shot from Bruce Conner’s film ‘A Movie’.

Action Movie

chest expander

In this installation the interface is an old-style-strongman spring chest expander. As the viewer expands it, the projected video advances. As the viewer lets the springs contract the video starts going backwards, but at a slower rate. To keep watching the movie, one has to keep energetically expanding the springs. When the springs are held expanded, the video goes forward at a slow rate, when one takes too long of a break between pulls, the video goes back to where it started.

scene from 'You Only Live Twice'

The projected video content consists of 20 minutes of scenes containing ‘sex and violence’ from a James Bond movie, “You only live twice”.


In this installation the user puts on a pair of boxing gloves.  As the user throws a punch, it is accompanied by a sound of an explosion. The more powerful the punch the bigger the explosion. Sound effects in movies enrich the content even though they might not be very realistic. We are so used to this practice and so surrounded by media content that this effect might seem ‘real-er’ than a plain experience.


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