Walking around Brasília some years ago I had the distinct feeling that I was doing it “wrong” because, of course, I was. The center of Brasilía is organized along the Exio Monumental, featuring an array of government and other important buildings that form a long spine.
This is a place designed to be “read” at the speed of a vehicle, so taking in Brasília by foot is like watching a movie in slow motion. It turns out, both can be rewarding in unexpected ways.
Can a film be consumed at the speed of reading a book? Yes, just as a car city can be enjoyed on foot. Slowing things down to an extreme measure creates room for appreciation of the object, as in Brasília, but the prolonged duration also starts to shift the relationship between object, viewer, and context.
A Very Slow Movie Player (VSMP) doesn’t tell you the time; it helps you see yourself against the smear of time.
VSMP is an object that contains a Raspberry Pi computer, custom software, and a reflective ePaper display (similar to a Kindle), all housed inside a 3D printed case. Every 2.5 minutes a frame from the film stored on the computer’s memory card is extracted, converted to black and white using a dithering algorithm, and then communicated to the reflective ePaper display. This adds up to playing the film at a rate of 24 frames per hour, which is in contrast to the traditional speed of 24 frames per second. That’s the slow part, obviously.
You can read Bryan’s thorough article here and see it in action in the video below.
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