The present version of Julius Popp’s Bit.Fall is a logical next step of the project, which started in 2001 as an installation of eight nozzles. Water is used as a medium between information regarding current affairs and the viewer. The input of the installation is based on buzzwords selected by a statistical software from various news websites. The digital information is transformed into images, which then are shaped by the water: the nozzles emit water in individual drops through magnetic valves. The valves are synchronised by a computer program, making it possible to control the drops as they fall to the ground, giving shape to the bitmap pattern. After the water is collected in a container, it is sucked back into the valve construction by a pump, creating a closed circuit.
Julius Popp develops interdisciplinary works, in which art and science converge—experimental set-ups that are as simple in structure and perceivable to the senses as they are complex and techno- logically sophisticated. His installations analyse the interactions between complex systems, by applying the autonomous, logical rules of artificial machines. Bit.Fall focuses on the basic aspects underpinning the intricate interrelationships between humans, between humans and machines, and between humans and nature, as well as their social implications—the process of becoming human through cultural and natural conditioning.
The ephemeral “info-curtain” is a metaphor for the flood of information we are exposed to, and from which we draw our ever-changing realities. Here, the pieces of visual information are only temporarily perceptible as images, before they dissolve into themselves. The distribution of information is revealed as a transient, easily manipulated phenomenon. What remain are the associations of the viewers. The point is not what we see—the decisive factor is how we evaluate it.
The moment when the water droplets leave the machine, the letters have already begun to dissolve, the information produced by the machine is valid only for a few seconds. The link to the internet actually means a link to culture, therefore whatever is running on the machine has current value in culture and is meaningful somehow. The machine is a symbol that these meanings or values can change very fast; things which are important to us today, can be completely different tomorrow.
— Julius Popp