Inspired by Buddhist tales and set to the tune of Pauline Anna Strom's astral electronic soundscapes; Ether Antenna is a short film by Australian new media artist Michael Candy. The film follows the story of some 10 robot characters on a surreal journey through Nepal. Fusing spirituality with robotics this cybernetic story exploits humanity’s paradoxical affinity between technology and ecology.
Designed and built on residency at RAN (the Robotics Association of Nepal) in the later months of 2016, all robot characters were developed to act specifically as puppets and carry out precise interactions through different scenes and scenarios. The journey begins as robots are birthed from a sacred tree into the pure streams of water beginning at Muktinath and follows their journey toward the polluted rivers of Kathmandu, where a bipedal robot (human) is birthed from an angel (drone) to reign chaos on the robotic creatures as it collects their souls.
This film will be premiered in Nepal and screened during the Triennale at various sites with local partners.
Michael Candy (Australia/Nomadic) uses physical technologies to impart systems theory on ecology and sociology. From making scale replicas of metamorphosis to remotely operated protest devices installed within the G20 exclusion zone. His devices empower and translate closed systems into tangible medium; a flooding river is given a voice, a goldfish is at the mercy of a cocktail party, colours shine never visible, synthesizers are controlled by an active volcano and in the Amazon mercury vapor rises above a golden statue in an illegal mining town. A myriad of encounters both ecological and political, giving rise to contrasts as paradoxes become diluted.
Candy is a member of BESTCINCO Media art and design group as well as Golden Solution Collective. He has been involved in many international and local projects, notably: First Draft (Sydney), Next Wave (Melbourne), The Instrument Builders Project, Hackteria Lab (Yogyakarta) and Hawapi (Peru). In 2015 Michael won the WRO Award as part of the 16th Media Art biennale in Poland and later Prix Cube (Paris) with Big Dipper.