Last update: 13 May 2018
Designed by DBBD
Index of Works
Other Works
Back to Top ↑

A Brief History of the Trapdoor

What is this strange dematerialising door that fleetingly forms a vignette framing the corners of the moving image? What narratives are being escaped from when cinematic illusion is designed to trigger the startle reflex?





Exhibited at The Substation

Access to the basement and secret passageway may not be suitable for pregnant women, the elderly, very young children, or mobility impaired.

Warning: Not suitable for those who may be claustrophobic, afraid of the dark, or of a nervous disposition. Contains no strobe lights or sudden loud sounds.
For thousands of years, secret trapdoors have been built into important man-made structures where security and secrecy is an issue. The trapdoor is also a staple architectural element in performance venues and theatres, where in theatrical drama, film, and literature, the trapdoor operates as a strange spatial device through which unexpected resolutions fall in or out of the narrative world like magic.

What is this strange dematerialising door that fleetingly forms a vignette framing the corners of the moving image? What narratives are being escaped from when cinematic illusion is designed to trigger the startle reflex?


Exhibited at The Substation
Produced as part of "Discipline the City" at The Substation, 2017