Submarine Rescue Signal from 2002 is an early smoke piece by Brazilian artist Camila Sposati, featuring tropical scenery with colonial connotations invaded by intense hallucinatory orange smoke. Recorded on 16 mm film in slow motion the smoke takes on a heavy material substance that occasionally envelops the exotic idyll completely.
Sposati uses brightly colored smoke to dramatically stage a particular landscape or urban context. The color of the smoke carries its own material value with reference to a modernist tradition. Her smoke explosions are violent transformative actions that seek to infect seemingly ordered systems with an ephemeral chaos. She works with smoke as the visualization of chaos itself. Smoke gives visual form to gas as one of the four classical states of matter, which is characterized by an ever changing, random structure. The constituent particles of smoke are able to move about freely and are therefore essentially unpredictable. As such, Sposati’s smoke performances celebrate high-level entropy and instability as well as the transformational process that leads from one situation to another.
Watch the video in fullscreen on → Vimeo.