Bilateral Time Slicer

A biometric tracking system finds the axis of symmetry of members of the public using face detection. When the axis is found to be in an almost vertical orientation the computer splits the live camera image into two slices. With each new participant time slices are recorded and pushed aside. When no one is viewing the work, the slices close and rejoin creating a procession of past recordings. The piece is inspired by time-lapse sculptures and masks that can be found in ancient traditions (Aztec three-faced mask, the avatars of Vishnu) and modern and contemporary art (Duchamp, Balla, Minujín, Schatz, Kanemaki). Like in the Aztec three-faced mask, the central strip corresponds to the younger, most recent portrait, whereas the farthest one to the sides represents the oldest portrait.

The piece exists either as a "treatment" featuring any size and aspect ratio screen. For example, the piece was installed in Miami using a 180 x 160 cm Barco Residential LED digital canvas that visually connected the piece to the form factor of a door. The treatment can be made much wider for example to fit a specific architecture, or it can be broken into an array of flat screens acting as a videowall. The piece also exists as a traditional shadowbox on a single, vertically oriented flat screen any size between 55 and 100 inches in diagonal.
Name in spanish: Rebanadora de Tiempo Bilateral
Year of Creation: 2016
Technique: Custom-software, 4K camera with digitizer, computer
Power: Depends on screen(s) used
Room conditions: The piece is silent and is not affected by sound. The piece can work with natural or artificial lighting conditions, although the screen brightness needs to match the lighting conditions
Dimensions: Treatment variable
Shadowbox any flat screen from 55 to 100” diagonal
Edition: Treatment 1 copy + 1 AP
Shadowbox 6 copies + 1AP
Keywords: indoor, recorder, biometric, outdoor, database.
Photo library (click to expand)



  • Stephan Schulz and Marc Lavallée - Programming
  • Miguel Legault, Karine Charbonneau, Carolina Murillo-Morales, Jorge Perez, Patricia García-Velez Hanna, Lourdes Padrón, Chris Darsow, Tim Sinnaeve, Daniel Nilsson, Ken Silvestri, David Robledo - Production Support
  • Jonas Jongejan - DLib add-on for face detection