Martín Kaulen


Una habitación pequeña
Escuela del fosfeno
Registro hablado
By sound
Les chutes du temps
Paisaje microscópico
Cool coco


Una habitación pequeña, 2022
Single channel video
8’ 14”

La meva muntanya preferida (2022)
Group exhibition
Arts Santa Mònica, Barcelona, Spain

This video brings up different moments of research and experimentation, carried out between 2014 and 2022, about the influence of light on brain waves. Starting from the principle of flickering light, which can cause the expression of Alpha brain waves and the perception of visual hallucinations called phosphenes, testimonies of people under its influence are collected as well as a reconstruction of the scientific and artistic context studying the phenomenon for two centuries.

While science currently seeks to explain the vision of phosphenes by studying the electrical signals of the brain, through artistic practices, its comprehension is proposed through the attentive observation of the phenomenon together with other people, allowing an exchange and a collective learning process. The interweaving of people's testimonies reveals the potential of orality to explain a complex reality and be able to transmit it. In this multiplicity of viewpoints, individual memory intersects with the collective one, evoking certain points in common between these images and the material production of different cultures.

However, hallucination has been rejected since modernity by Western culture, linking it to sick people (epilepsy, schizophrenia), questioning the mystical ecstasies of Christian religious people (Saint Teresa, Saint John of the Cross) as well as persecuting people who carry out shamanic practices in the Global South. Today, the visual arts allow a space of resistance for this kind of practices, highlighting the limits of rational intelligence as a univocal way of understanding the human condition.

View of the exhibition at Arts Santa Mònica, Barcelona, Spain