We Are Made of Time

Moynihan Train Hall, Penn Station Art at Amtrak May 15 — July 15, 2024

  • Curated by
  • Presented by
  • Debra Simon Consulting
  • Art at Amtrak & Empire State Development

We Are Made of Time, an ambitious video installation throughout Moynihan train hall by Tin & Ed, performs a temporal magic trick, compressing 4.5 billion years of Earth’s geological change into a symphonic moment. Harnessing procedural modeling software, the artists have generated rocks, minerals, 3D sculpted fossils and scanned elements, placing them into a fluid, constantly shifting panoramic landscape—one unmoored from linear time. In it, seemingly solid surfaces—the foundations that we walk above, the carved-out spaces trains speed through—are revealed to be in flux, albeit in ways we can’t usually see. They shift and fuse into one another, exposing a planet that is startlingly alive.

From childhood, Tin & Ed were avid rock collectors, searching the earth for precious finds, scouring their surfaces for clues about our world. As adults, they were drawn to formalized arrangements of rocks and minerals: natural history museums and cabinets of curiosities. We Are Made of Time is, in some ways, their imagined rock collection enlarged, one freed from rules of scale or probability. Like a cabinet of curiosity, it layers time scales together—cosmic, geological and biological—showing loops and patterns and connections, at once ancient and beyond our lifetime.

In daily life, time is framed as exclusively linear: everything pushing forward, all at once. We Are Made of Time urges viewers to step outside this structure, to consider how geological events millions of years ago connect to us now, how present happenings will echo into the vast expanse of what’s to come.

We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time
We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time We Are Made of Time

More projects

Tin&Ed

Tin Nguyen & Edward Cutting are Australian artists and creative technologists based in New York. They create playful installations and experiences that illuminate the borderless dimension between art and science, the physical and the digital, the human and the more than human.

Read more