THE EOPHONE'S WHISTLE, 2015
vidéo 2k, Col, 20', graphite on paper, 70 x100 cm, cartographies

Collaboration with oceanographer and navigator Victor Turpin

11,500 years ago, a cold wave hits western Europe. On the margins of fiction, the installation Eophone’s whistle, demonstrates the results of an expedition into the Atlantic Ocean. This journey invites to consider the influence of the ocean’s circulation on climate balance.

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2k, Col, 20' (English subtiltes)


Eophone, Graphite on paper, 70 x 100 cm, 2015


Inside the Eophone, Graphite on paper, 70 x 100 cm, 2015


Eophone (Detail), Glass Plate with direction of the North, C Print, 7 x 10 cm, 2015


Eophone (Detail), Glass Plate with thermic variations imprints , C Print, 7,5 x 16 cm, 2015


On the traces of the Eophone, A solitary expedition through the Atlantic, View from the video installation


On the traces of the Eophone, A solitary expedition through the Atlantic, View from the video installation


On the traces of the Eophone, A solitary expedition through the Atlantic, View from the video installation

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The Eophone (from the Greek, eol : wind and phone : voice) is an enigmatic oceanographic tool. So the story goes, the physicist and inventor Benjamin Thompson, set one adrift in the currents of the Atlantic in 1799.

Twenty years earlier, the captain of an English slave-trading ship had discovered an significant contrast in temperature between surface and deep waters: waters a mile below his ship were colder than at the surface, despite the sub-tropical location of his boat.

Nowadays, this phenomenon is known as the thermohaline circulation. Driven by the difference in densities created from the flux of heat and freshwater, this circulation takes around 1,500 years to cross all oceans. It plays a key role in balancing the climate as it distributes heat around the globe. However, global warming can weaken or even cause it to stop. This actually happened 11,500 years ago.

To carry out further observations, we believe Benjamin Thompson invented the Eophone, an instrument capable of recording variations in temperature and salinity through the oceans. Similar to a drawing by Jules Verne, the Eophone is a long narrow cylinder capped by a horn.

When it reaches the surface, wind dives into the cone and creates a whistling noise that attracts passing sailors. The discovery of an Eophone is a source of unprecedented information that gives access to memories of the ocean and the climate.

Unfortunately, the Eophone only rises to the surface once every 72 years. No one caught it in 1871 nor in1943. Victor Turpin tried his luck in 2015. The installation presents his investigation through the Atlantic.

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The Whistel’s Eophone was created during an artist-in-residence with paleo-climatologists and oceanographers from National Natural History Museum and Pierre and Marie Curie University as part of Demain, le Climat. This installation was shown as part of ArtCop21






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