Designer | Artist Diller Scofodio, Renfro, Laura Kurgan
Year 2008

Exit builds on curator and cultural theorist Paul Virilio’s notion that what most defines humanity today are our patterns of migration. The installation visualizes the global movement of people, both forced and voluntary and due to various factors (whether political, economic, and environmental), through a series of six panoramic narratives displayed over the course of 42 minutes. In the introductory sequence (opposite, bottom), a globe spins around the room, leaving trails of population statistics. In Remittances (opposite, top), money sent by migrant laborers to their nations of origin is tracked by country. Population Weather (top) displays recent population shifts in a stark white-on-black graphic that resembles a seismograph, with peaks signaling growth and trenches locating decline. In Population Density (center), a matrix-like landscape of rapidly changing green numbers draws attention to the fastest growing cities. In Political Refugees (bottom), waves of green pixels represent mass exodus from areas of war. Natural Disasters (not pictured) presents the relative magnitude and effects of droughts, floods, and other catastrophes from 1990 to 2008. And in Rising Seas, Sinking Cities (not pictured) a projected map of the world glows brighter in areas with the highest concentrations of carbon emissions. Data and geography are thus fused in multidimensional and dynamic maps, and the design of the theater and installation wraps viewers in a universe of information, transmitting a sense of global scale and immediacy. Exit was commissioned by the Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris, as part of Terre Natale, an exhibition in 2008.