The Zone of Total Eclipse

January 1, 1970

This piece is based on scientific film footage shot by the Finnish Geodetic Institute in Poroluoto, western Finland in 1945. Filmed during a total eclipse of the Sun, this was the first time in history that sound film was used to measure the exact geographical distance between two continents, Europe and North America. The scientists attempted to calculate the passage of time by beaming long-wave radio signals into space and synchronizing these signals with their cinematic observations. 

The experiment failed, however, due to loading errors and mechanical running problems with the newly introduced 35 mm cameras.

The work consists of two separate reels – positive (“The Sun”) and negative (“The Moon”) – projected simultaneously, superimposed on a wall. The piece pays homage to the early pioneers of scientific film, a celebration of our subconscious dark side and interplanetary shadows. (MT / translation: Silja Kudel)

Sound Design: Olli Huhtanen, Production: Kinotar / Cilla Werning, Lasse Saarinen

Selected screenings

  • Message to Man, Cinema Aurora, St. Petersburg, Russia, 2019
  • Seismic Ooze, ICA London, 2017
  • Aikakoneita – Time Machines, Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, 2013
  • Midnight Sun Film Festival, Sodankylä, Finland, 2013
  • IFFR Rotterdam, The Netherlands, 2013
  • Kontraste Festival, Krems, Austria, 2012
  • Zone d’éclipse totale, Dazibao, Centre de photographies actuelles, Montréal, Canada, 2007
  • Eclipse, RAM Gallery, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, 2007
  • Ann Arbor Film Festival, USA, 2007
  • Lost & Found, S.M.A.K. Stedelijk Museum voor Actuele Kunst, Gent, Belgium, 2006
  • Toronto International Film Festival, Canada, 2006