Snail Trail

Philipp Artus

Madalena Graca for the music

3D/Sculpture Award

In “Snail Trail” a snail invents the wheel and goes through a cultural evolution to finally get back to its origin. A laser animation is projected at an angle of 360° onto a column, so that the audience has to walk around to follow the course of the snail. The projection surface is of a phosphorescent material, which creates an after-glowing trail that fades out slowly.

A theme I was interested in is the influence that a specific space has on the manner of being. In the animation each environment forces the snail to invent a new locomotion. This principle can be seen in Darwin's evolution theory, where species adapt to their surroundings, but it can also be experienced in daily life, where each environment influences our communication and behaviour.  

The phosphorescent light trails offer a unique perspective on locomotion: through them, the audience can simultaneously see what happens, what has happened and what will happen. This reflection on time is elaborated further through the endlessly cycling structure of the work as well as through the recurring pulse of sound and light which refers to periodic natural phenomena like the tides or the seasons.

I animated the figure in 3ds max. The laser projection and the sound is played by HE Laserscan software. 

Necessary Hardware includes a notebook, an ultra-violet laser projector, a sound-system, highly reflective steel, a cylinder made of wood, acrylic glas painted with phosphorescent color.

snail trail - laser sculpture