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Mindful : August 2014
Video Artist Prolongs the Present Thirty thousand photos are uploaded to the Internet every minute, according to Buzzfeed. And as a result we’re spending more time really appreciating each... and...every...one. Slowly savoring the images. Not so much. Adam Magyar, a Berlin- based photographer, says we don’t spend much time looking at still photos, since “we’ve gotten used to under- standing the message quickly. But we tend to look longer and think more deeply about mov- ing images.” So, to entice us to spend more time appreciating, he has gone from still photog- raphy to super slo-mo video— using software he developed to capture stunning images with a clarity never before achieved. In his project Stainless, Magyar pointed his camera out the windows of subway trains. In high-definition black and white, he filmed people waiting on platforms in Berlin, New York, and Tokyo as trains pulled into stations. What takes 12 seconds in reality is slowed down to 12 minutes of video, allowing viewers a chance to see people To see excerpts from Adam Magyar’s Stainless video project, go to mindful.org/ stainless moving very, very slowly as they are about to board. It’s hypnotic, an everyday occur- rence made surreal. “In all my work, I’m always talking about the present,” he says. “We are always dreaming about the past and anticipating the future, and that keeps us busy. That is something you can’t capture with technology while it’s going on inside you. But I’m using my camera to try and get closer to it, trying to show the preciousness of now.” It’s no accident that Magyar chose subways for his project. When we’re in those spaces we’re usually waiting to go somewhere else, “in a hurry, not paying attention to the mundane details around us. We want to accelerate time and just get to our destina- tion, but our time is so short to waste any of it. That’s what I want people to think about: This moment and how little time we’re given.” ● ADAM MAGYAR decelerates time in Stainless. The video artist creates haunting slow-motion portraits of urban tedium. 14 mindful August 2014 14 mindful August 2014 VIDEOSTILLCOURTESYOFADAMMAGYAR now