Channel of the North

Channel of the North is a collaborative project created by Jan Baeke and Alfred Marseille in 2012. Jan Baeke is a poet, digital poet, translator, editor, and programmer. On the other hand, Alfred Marseille works with video, sound, photography and installation art; and also has a background in philosophy and electronic music. With that being said, this project combines data visualization, poetry, and telepresence through a series of poems that expand and contract. The expanding and contracting of this poem is based on the ebb and flow of the tides located in the Westerschelde river at the Dutch-Belgian border. Personally, I think this was very creative and I wish I could’ve been there for thought process.


Like I stated before, Channel of the North is an online poem that grows and shrinks twice daily as a function of the tide in the Westerschelde river. At low tide, the text is too small to read, while at high tide, the screen is filled by just a few words. Also, as the sea levels at this location are highly variable, each day the poem behaves differently. The text of the poem reflects the continuously shifting fate the tide brings. The fact that they were able to make nature have an actual effect on the project amazes me. This project is actually part of The others did it, which is a series of poems whose content and presentation change under the influence of online data on dynamic events that occur elsewhere in the world. With that being said, the reader of the text has no influence on the content and presentation of that text. 




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