An experimental study in anticipation and relief, revealed through a minimalist event.
I made this for a talk at OFF, in Barcelona 2016. That talk was about the joy of experiential work and the idea that you're able to actually create memories for people through shared experiences, rather than simply shouting your message at or to them in a commercial. Part of what gives you this ability is the fact that you can control their emotions in a physical environment. Especially at scale. Traditional design doesn't always allow for this.
I played a version of this piece (initially called Denial) on 3 huge screens while I talked over it, proselytizing over the virtues of experiential installations. I knew that people would ignore me while they watched this ballbearing slowly drop from the sky.
But I had a captive audience, and I could pretty much do what I wanted and that they wouldn’t be paying attention to anything I said as they anticipated the moment of impact. Then I cut it off right before it hit. It proved my point: I was able to manipulate them. It got a nice groan then laugh from the crowd.
Since then, I decided it works better on the small screen to actually feel the relief. There's just something so satisfying about when it hits that water.