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01 Mar 2017

Pacific Place Presents Digital Art Installation by German media artist Julius Popp, driven by Internet search terms

Pacific Place today announced that it will present a large scale public art installation by German media artist Julius Popp from 13 March to 6 April 2017. This presentation of public art forms part of Swire Properties’ extensive arts programme taking place in Hong Kong during the city’s annual art month.

BIT.FALL is a pioneering multimedia work that combines technology and engineering to create a curtain of individual water droplets, that in combination spell individual words. The installation consists of two cycles – a water cycle and an information cycle. Connected to the Internet in real time, an algorithm is used to look for popular buzzwords through different newsfeed channels, which are then displayed as words through hundreds of water droplets in a curtain of water.

New words made of these droplets form constantly, legible for only a fraction of a second before they disappear. The title of the work, referring to the ‘bit’, the smallest unit of digital information, references the transient nature of information, the rate at which it is rapidly disseminated, and its short lifespan. 

The structure, made up of 30ft containers, is inspired by the Tower of Babel, a mythical construction that notoriously failed because of language barriers. The containers are stackable and refer to the logistics of international trade that, combined with the exchange of information over the internet, have resulted in language barriers being overcome. With the orientation of the containers representing the global waterways that serve as their main transportation, it is fitting that this work makes its way to Hong Kong, a major international port.  

BIT.FALL has enjoyed widespread international critical acclaim and previously made its way to leading international institutions such as MoMa in New York and Australia’s Museum of Old and New Art, as well as being installed at the London Olympics in 2012. Located in one of Hong Kong’s premier lifestyle destinations, this large scale public installation will make world class art easily accessible to the Hong Kong general public in March, allowing the community to experience the work of a leading contemporary artist free at a central location. This year’s installation follows the success of ‘Pacific Red’ by Larry Bell which was presented at Pacific Place for art month in March 2016. 

Julius Popp’s BIT.FALL is being brought to Pacific Place by the CHOI&LAGER Gallery in March as part of Swire Properties’ long-standing dedication to the arts in Hong Kong, and coincides with the company’s fifth year sponsoring Art Basel in Hong Kong. Swire Properties will bring world class art to the general public in Hong Kong with a number of other activities, both at the show and at its properties across the city. Events include: The Swire Properties VIP lounge at Art Basel Hong Kong, designed by leading architect Hugh Dutton; an impressive Talks Programme featuring speakers such as Hans Ulrich Obrist (Serpentine Galleries) and Philip Tinari (UCCA); and an exhibition of early paintings and drawings by internationally renowned British architect Zaha Hadid, brought to ArtisTree at Taikoo Place, in collaboration with London’s Serpentine Galleries and Zaha Hadid Design. For further details on Swire Properties’ arts programme, please visit: arts.swireproperties.com

Fiona Shiu, General Manager, Pacific Place said: “We’re very proud to be showcasing this incredible art installation at Pacific Place. As a key lifestyle destination in the city, Pacific Place offers the perfect space to bring art to the public sphere. Julius Popp is a pioneering digital artist, and BIT.FALL is a unique interpretation of our new world of digital communication. I hope the public enjoy viewing this extraordinary piece of art in our mall.” 

Julius Popp, artist, said: ‘’I only display the keywords of the current ‘Zeitgeist’ - what is happening in our cultural environment at the moment and how it changes. I want to express that cultures are changing and at the same time being created. There’s is a permanent process by which things keep emerging and disappearing, a process of change, and that is the key component I want to express in BIT.FALL.’’

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About Julius Popp
Julius Popp (b.1973, Germany) graduated from the Leipzig Academy of the Visual Arts in Germany and has been featured in special exhibitions at prestigious museums around the world, including MoMA (2008), Musée d'Art contemporain de Lyon (2008), London’s Victoria and Albert Museum (2009), and the ZKM in Germany (2015). His work was featured at the Olympic Park as part of London’s 2012 Olympics, where it received widespread media attention and interest from the public. Working within the boundary between science and art, Popp has been delving into the nature of information and its interrelationship with man in the present digital age.

Gallery List

.bit.fall pulse, 2015. Courtesy: National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea, Photo: Yongkwan Kim

.German media installation artist Julius Popp