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    The Human Tide (Photo by Peter Fry)

Art: Wall of light follows the tide as thought-provoking tribute to Duchamp

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The unlikely combination of a coastal resort in Kent and arguably the 20th Century’s most influential artist came together in spectacular fashion for a creative project like no other.

To mark the centenary of Marcel Duchamp’s visit to Herne Bay where he made Three Standard Stoppages, a conceptual work based around chance which is now owned by MOMA in New York, digital media performance agency Unique and design agency Syzygy organised their own unique tribute. Teams of walkers with LED lights on sticks spent three hours at night walking the bay at the level of the receding tide, creating an extraordinary light wall that captured the imagination of the local community and the art world alike.

As you can see from the images here the spectacle was a stunning aesthetic triumph as well as a thought-provoking homage to Duchamp’s ideas, but the most exciting aspect of the project will be a time-lapse film – recorded by a unique 3D Mirror rig and scored by Orbital’s Paul Hartnoll – of the happening which will be premiered at a special Human Tide exhibition next month.

There was an otherworldy and at times surreal experience as the project unfolded and took over the bay but even if you weren’t able to see the spine-tingling work in the flesh there are plenty of opportunities to engage with the project still. Photographs, tidal sounds and geospatial data will be available for people to remix as they see fit so that the knock-on effects of Duchamp’s visit to Kent can evolve in all kinds of unforeseen creative ways.

You can find out more about the project at the Human Tide website and follow @HumanTide2013 on Twitter.

  • Lightwalkers-preparing-to-create-something-magical-(matthew-parkes)

    The Human Tide (Photo by Matthew Parkes)

  • Human-tide-participants-walk-the-tide-(dan-ridgway)

    The Human Tide (Photo by Dan Ridgway)

  • Lightwalkers-head-for-the-edge-of-the-tide-(matthew-parkes)

    The Human Tide (Photo by Matthew Parkes)

This article was produced in collaboration with Unique Digital.

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