Simon Faithfull’s remarkable Escape Vehicle No.6 started as a live event commissioned by The Arts Catalyst for its first International Artists Airshow. The live audience witnessed the launching of a weather balloon with a domestic chair dangling in space beneath it. Once the apparatus had disappeared into the sky, they then watched a live video relay from the weather balloon on a giant screen as it journeyed from the ground to the edge of space (30km up).
Now presented as a non-live video work, the footage shows the chair first rush away from the fields and roads, ascend through clouds and finally (against the curvature of the earth and the blackness of space) begin to disintegrate. The chilling nature of the film is that the empty chair invites the audience to imagine taking a journey to an uninhabitable realm where it is impossible to breath, the temperature is minus 60 below and the sky now resembles the blackness of space.
YouTube Escape Vehicle No 6