UNICOLOR / 2020
From Carsten Nicolai
Unicolor is based on the way we perceive colour. This is one of 16 modules, each presenting a different idea of colour perception. You can see that if the RGB is moving fast it turns white because at a higher speed, our brains mix the colour automatically. It’s a bit like a movie – you have 25 still frames per second but we think the image is moving. Goethe realised, almost 200 years ago, that the brain adds colour with a very simple test: if you look at a strong colour for a long time and then you look at white paper, you see the complementary colour. Our perception of colour depends on contrasts of black and white, and what colour is next to it. You can find contrast situations every day in nature: when you look at the sunset, for example, there’s a contrast on the horizon. Well one of the most important points in the installation is what looks like a horizon, where the projection meets the black wall. When you focus on this point, a bit further below, the colours look completely different. For a very short moment there’ll be an afterimage.