Yael Kanarek

 

Born in New York, 1967
Lives in New York

World of Awe, 2000

www.worldofawe.net

Website, laptop, digital print

The core of the World of Awe website is a journal, an original narrative that uses the ancient genre of the traveler's tale to explore the virtual world. As the websiteís introduction explains, the (fictional) journal was found on a laptop--evidently built by a traveler in Silicon Canyon, a graveyard for old computer components. The journal utilizes basics of the Graphical User Interface (GUI), though many aspects of this interface are skewed. Included in the journal are twenty-one love letters that open from digital landscapes, 3 travel logs that describe events occurring throughout the expedition, and descriptions of 3 unique navigation tools. World of Awe contains multiple, continuously evolving manifestations; in addition to the journal, the website also contains a "Love Letters Delivery System" (which e-mails the journalís love letters to the systemsís 2000 subscribers); and "Nowheres," a series of renderings of the territory being explored.

The travelerís tale focuses on the search for a lost treasure in a desert terrain called the Sunset/Sunrise. There, the narratorís determination to find the treasure meets his or her nostalgia for imagined technology and a longing for a loved one left behind. World of Awe explores the virtual world in terms of the relationship between storytelling and travel, as well as technological and "lived" memory. As Michel de Certeau has pointed out, it is impossible to distinguish between a travel metaphor and metaphor as travel, since "every story is a travel story--a spatial practice." Texts and stories select and organize places, they link them together and transform them into sentences and itineraries. The World of Awe narrative uses a personal journey as an exploration of the deserted places of memory and the imagination, drawing parallels between our mind and technology. Language, the building block of narrative, informs our worldview, which in turn is rendered by our own built-in virtual reality machine, imagination. In World of Awe, a personal worldview becomes a customized, shared narrative pointing to the way we construct our reality through the filter of technologies.


James
Buckhouse

Mary
Flanagan

Benjamin
Fry

Lisa
Jevbratt

Yael
Kanarek

John
Klima

Margot
Lovejoy


Mark
Napier


Robert
Nideffer

Josh On
& Futurefarmers