Three flames ate the sun, and big stars were seen (2012)Phil Archer
The title is taken from a Chinese inscription from 1302 BC, in which a solar eclipse is described. The work uses data from NASA’s research into solar eclipses (2137 BC to 1991 AD) to calculate the dates of eclipses throughout history and tie them to recorded historical events. A blue laser is used to ‘paint’ a representation of each eclipse onto photochromic pigment, which then gradually fades away to be replaced by the next one.
Phil completed a PhD in music composition in 2004, creating his own handmade electronic instruments and rewiring existing technologies to see what would happen. Previous works have included modified CD players, electronic music boxes, and the integration of living plants into electronic circuits. These interests soon expanded to include broader artistic issues surrounding technology and nature, while retaining elements from musical practice such as rhythm, physicality, and intangibility.