Written by Shona Smith on Sep 18, 2019. Posted in On Location

Mexico City captured by drones for Barbican Centre audiovisual project

The video is the first from a new audiovisual work from Max Cooper, who was approached by the Barbican to exhibit as part of their Life Rewired series. The series asks artists to communicate the impact of technological shifts on the world which some do by finding creative uses for big data, algorithms, AI and VR.

Created in collaboration with visual artist Nick Cobby the project interrogates “the overwhelming vastness of infinity”. The video for the track Perpetual Motion captures “the continuous movement of people” who are creating their own unique paths. Three Mexican photographers captured drone footage over the city, and animation was placed “frame by frame into the drone footage” with Cobby’s own data.

Cobby explains that Mexico City was chosen as the canvas because it is a “sprawling metropolis of 9 million people, all packed in tight and some really interesting land forms and architecture”. The idea of using drones came about when Cobby began the scouting process on Google Earth. “There were some amazing geometric forms that when viewed from above give an entirely different perspective of the city”. He says, “I was really interested in the juxtaposition of these orderly forms with the irregular, disorderly chaos confined within it. For me it really helped push the idea of living as part of a perpetual system”.


Music & Concept: Max Cooper

Directed: Nick Cobby

Drone Photographers: Manuel Marañón, Roberto H & Santiago Arau

Animators: Nick Cobby Andy Lomas

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