Achim Mohné & Uta Kopp
Remotewords, 2007 to present (2011)Network Project and Lettering on the Roof of the Kumu Art Museum
The long-term project Remotewords disseminates news that can only be viewed from above and from outer space. The roof of the Kumu Art Museum in Tallinn has become the project’s sixteenth station worldwide; it bears a message that cannot be seen from the ground but will be visible and shared around the world through Google Earth and other navigation systems as soon as the satellite images are updated. The artists will create permanent messages in the form of large letters painted on the rooftops. Additional writers, artists, and scholars have been invited to join in developing key messages appropriate to the site and its function. The website of Remotewords embeds the coordinates of each location directly into Google Earth or Google. Photographic and video documentations as well as interviews with the authors and information about the sites deepen the semantic connection between place and message.
Remotewords is about the power and powerlessness of digital observational and communications systems. The project provides a response to the increasing commercialization of the Internet, with messages and news that use Google Earth as an artistic medium. And Google Earth’s suggested promise of real time is unmasked as an illusion, since the messages can only be read in the Internet after the satellite data is updated, and this in turn depends on the relevance of the site within the global network.
Achim Mohné und Uta Kopp, Remotewords in Tallinn | photo: Kaupo Kikkas