Surface Tension

"Surface Tension" is an interactive installation where an image of a giant human eye follows the observer with orwellian precision.This work was inspired by a reading of Georges Bataille's text The Solar Anus during the first Gulf War: first wide-spread deployment of camera-guided "intelligent bombs". Present-day computerised surveillance techniques employed by the Department of Homeland Security in the United States through the Patriot Act, provide a new and distressing backdrop for this piece.

The installation was originally developed in 1992 at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid as a stage module for a theatre work by the Transition State Theory troupe. Since then, Surface Tension has been presented as an art installation, typically on a plasma screen.

General info

Spanish name:
Tensión Superficial
Year of creation:
plasma or rear-projection screen, computerised surveillance system, custom-made software
5 copies + 1 AP copy



  • Conroy Badger - programming
  • Susie Ramsay, Will Bauer and Tara DeSimone - production
  • Bruce Ramsay - model