Last year, Rhode Island moved the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) into a renovated building. The new DMV has additional license and registration counters, a cafe, generous open spaces, and the promise of a short wait. But if you must wait, now visitors can view artwork to pass the time.
Recently, artist Erik Carlson installed a unique, permanent video installation along the main corridor of the DMV. Titled "In Passing", the installation consists of video screens on both sides of the corridor that play short 1-2 minute videos of scenes from Rhode Island's over 6,400 miles of public roadways. From urban to rural settings, crowded roads to peaceful back roads, the artwork uses slow motion video to create a dreamlike state that prompts a viewer to slow down and take a closer look at the state's unique landscapes. In fact, the artwork is interactive. The installation will detect the presence of a viewer and provide freeze frames for a viewer to further inspect a landscape, before the video continues after a few moments.
Rhode Island Public Radio's "Artscape" program created a report on the installation and several other public art installations throughout the state. If you would like to see videos from the installation, you may view them through Carlson's website.
The DMV building renovation was designed by Lerner, Ladds + Bartels Architects. Malcolm Grear Designers developed the exterior and interior wayfinding system for the building and the exterior supergraphic panels.