Materials and design by CPT, Richard Turner, and Paul Harris


Underwater Archeology

This installation transports participants to an archeological dig in the desert southwest. We ask that you take time to dig in the sand, manipulate and play with the rocks and debris. This responsive media installation encourages you to experience the different scales of time that are hidden from view. The materials on the gallery floor (on either side of the box) place you directly in the field. By manipulating them, you will find that a past and future ocean is sonically lurking in this desert excavation site. These desert temporalities are not predictable and easy to understand. Human and geological scales of time are intertwined in ways that often defy comprehension, and this installation asks that you experiment with these temporalities in order to find some temporary pattern or order to the sonic ocean concealed in this desert floor.

The box found in the middle of the fieldwork, transports you to the archeologists’ workstation. In manipulating the rocks and debris, you will discover that the sonic ocean is now more predictable and ordered than it was in the field. Cause and effect seem to have some bearing in this realm of archeological work. In short, our understanding of the underwater past and future of the desert is becoming more “scientific.” In time, these materials will become lifeless artifacts ready for display in a museum, like we find in the Recovered Anthropocene installation.