• Monday: 10am-5pm
  • Tuesday-Wednesday: Closed
  • Thursday: 10am-5pm
  • Friday: 10am-7pm
  • Saturday: 10am-5pm
  • Sunday: 10am-5pm

1606 Paseo de Peralta
Santa Fe, NM 87501


Don Ritter

The exhibition will be made up of two installations, Intersection (1993) and Vox Populi (2004). To enter an installation by artist Don Ritter is to become an active participant in a technological emulation of a tangible and somewhat familiar experience. Ritter’s installation places the audience in the active position of accomplice, making it as much a part of the medium as the technological supports that make the installation work.

Intersection is an interactive sound simulation of vehicles driving along four lines of traffic. Occupying a darkened space, the installation is triggered and completed by the “intrusion” and interaction of the human participant. Through use of infra-red sensors and feedback technologies, the movement and placement of the listener within the space alters the sound (and therefore the presumed motion and bearing) of the oncoming car. A person entering the installation simultaneously transforms and triggers it, by framing himself within the trajectory of oncoming vehicle(s).

In Vox Populi, you stand at a podium facing a video projection of a crowd of people. The people in the video encourage you to speak at the podium, equipped with a microphone and a telepromter displaying the text of historical political speeches, and they respond vociferously to the speech you deliver.

Although Vox Populi is comprised of various new media technologies, the primary feature of the work is an opportunity for anyone to control the masses through public speeches, an activity typically limited to political, business, and religious leaders. The texts on the teleprompter are historical speeches from influential political leaders, including John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr, and George W. Bush Jr. Responding to the leader’s vocal characteristics, the custom interactive system controls speech selection, the teleprompter, and selection of crowd sequences. Although leaders are free to speak what they want through the microphone, most obediently read the speeches provided. Both the leader and the crowd are controlled by technology.

Artist Bios

Don Ritter