Artist Amy Globus (New York, USA, 1976) presents the video installation Electronic Sheep (2003-2004) in Espacio Uno of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía. The title of the work alludes to Phillip K. Dick's 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? widely considered a science fiction classic and the book that gave rise to equally renowned film Blade Runner, directed by Ridley Scott in 1982.
Electronic Sheep is a looped video installation lasting four hours and a half. It is created by Globus in a documentary style and features the movements of pair of octopuses that have been rescued from a grocery shop by the artist.
Both creatures move through a narrow structure, using their tentacles and heads to move through the tubes as they manage to travel around in a kind of aquatic dance. The tubes used by Globus also include tanks where they can regain their original shape; thus the uncomfortable journey through the structures ultimately aims for the the recovery of their body shape.
Through this video installation the American artist intimates the identification of the viewer with the figure of the octopuses - alone and in company at the same time and sharing certain similarities in behaviour, conditioned by a state of melancholy the artist portrays.
The ability of these creatures to adapt to places that are uninhabitable for humans, along with their awkward passage through the tubes - making them twist and contract - is used by the artist to trigger a reflection on the difficulty of relationships and solitude.
The soundtrack to the piece comes in the form of Neil Young's track Wrecking Ball, performed here by the singer Emmylou Harris; a song that talks about love, loss, pride and vulnerability.
In 2004, Electronic Sheep was displayed as part of the collective exhibition entitled Future Noir, held in New York and inspired by the designs of visual futurist Syd Mead for film productions such as Blade Runner (mentioned above) and Tron (1982), pioneering films that first used computer generated graphic design.