Katarina Sylvan

«Phantom Flex»

02.02. – 05.02.2023


Phantom Flex

Text by Lina Kruopyte

Some moments, not all, are indeed of a decisive type.

Natural phenomena (a disaster?) unfolding; the jump curve of a military dolphin; shrapnels from a missile explosion; high-speed car crash; ballistics testing; Olympics finals. The Phantom Flex4k cameraa gadget authored by a company named Vision Researchrenders time as you know it slowed down and smoothened out. Extracting 1000 frames per second, it makes visible, in hyper detail, the minutiae of speed, light and movement. You’re faced with a new type of aesthetic, a hypnotizing visuality, an uncanny hyper-highway unfamiliar to your eyes in any other mode other than when you’re consuming news or entertainment. Being the art lover that you are, you naturally think to yourself that Phantom Flex4k sure does a diametrical opposite to what Louise Lawler does when she horizontally stretches out a single frame of a photograph across the room.

This makes you nostalgic for days past, analog, for the Golden Age of Disney animation with imagery that’s grainy and dusty like a retro filter, accompanied by some scratchy and slightly infantile jazz standard (I’ve Got A Feeling You’re Foolin’, perhaps?). You’re thinking of rotoscoping, a labor-intense frame-by-frame animation technique that chops up successive movement into frames per second to later play it back to your eyes that are longing for coherence, a condition long lost.

Endlessly repetitive, super-focused and obsessive, rotoscoping naturally reminds you of the big sports – the ones that ‘’The Whole World’’ is watching and rewatching in slow motion forever. The Olympic seconds of geo-political importance will inevitably fall into the categories of Success or Failure, become a part of history and definitely a part of your biography. The situation calls for excessive mental and physical rehearsal, perfecting your attitude as much as your choreography. You’ve heard that repetition is key, et cetera.

Rehearsal easily segways into rumination, it’s two-directional. That thing that went wrong is played over and over again in your head, looped to infinity, torturing you always. You wonder how many frames per second your mind’s eye can recreate. You size up that misstep of yours, trying to figure out whether it’s choppy and syncopated, or a smooth 120hz slow motion in 4k. You hope for the latter.

You hear sounds of a historical choreographic sequence, you have to admit it’s ASMR-esque. You can’t make out if the sequence of steps is looped or unique, you can’t make out if it’s rehearsal or rumination.

Your synesthesia is fully triggered now, making you see a bottom-of-a-swimming-pool kind of blue, your nasolacrimal ducts twitch in anticipation of tears and chlorine.

You’re on the edge of a trampoline, you’re at the starting line, you’re really into minimalism.


Studio17 er støttet av Kulturrådet og Stavanger kommune.


Torsdag 2. februar kl. 18:00 – 20:00


Fredag 3. februar kl. 12:00 – 16:00
Lørdag 4. februar kl. 12:00 – 16:00
Søndag 5. februar kl. 12:00 – 16:00