Extraordinary Alien

Full Dome, Video
(2018)

”Extraordinary Alien” by Fatima Al Qadiri & Transforma is based on the US artist visa classification, “alien with extraordinary ability”. It plays with the double meaning of the word “alien” and the notion that all outer space aliens are inherently extraordinary, from the perspective of lowly earthlings. This explains the tendency in science fiction films towards glimpses leading up to a big reveal when the alien is fully unveiled in front of the viewer. This reveal is often followed by disappointment in the alien form, one that rarely meets our extraordinary expectations. How is it that our imagination is incapable of creating a compelling alien form beyond a scant selection perpetuated by Hollywood films?

In this work, the artists explore the push and pull of tension, repetition and expectation – what is being revealed? Using a collection of simple materials, a range of textures is generated to appear as planetary surfaces, galaxies and alien skins. The use of these materials is deliberate, aiming to highlight the sci-fi qualities of earthly objects. The soundtrack is based on a single phrase repeated with different sounds as a motif for the alien and their environment that are teased, but never fully revealed.

A coproduction of the Berliner Festspiele / Immersion / The New Infinity and Planetarium Hamburg

Funded by Beauftragte der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien