Deja Vu II. “Have I Been Here Before?”


The project is an interactive video installation. It questions one’s position within the surrounding environment and transforms the space of the gallery into a place that appears familiar yet distant. It invites the participants for an examination of their own image, its position within the created architectural space, and the reflection of it and self.

Projected Images of long dark hallways from Eastern State Penetentiary create illusion of architectural space along the walls of the gallery. Spectators may engage in the play of scale and perspective within the limits and illusions of the projected and real architecture. They can also  engage with the installation of central assembly of optical architectures of  3 glass  sheets 4′ x 7′  and dive into the play of the reflected and refracted images  enveloped in the perceptual play of  optics.


Deja Vu II. “Have I been Here Before?” is 10 minute improvised performance  where the performer introduces the optical and architectural qualities of the space and the installation. First launched at La Chambre Blanche on April 2010, where  students of the Quebec Dance School were invited to interact with the work.  Selected Performers approach different sections of the space to engage in the play of light and its abstract qualities, representation of provided images and lastly engages in play of scale of the image of the body and the images of the projected architectures.

The performance is optional and may take place if the conditions of the venue allows for such showing, however it is not required for the presentation of the work itself as an exposition and/or performative environment.

The spectators have an opportunity to observe the introduction of the space by the performer during the time of the performance and are invited to engage with the space themselves. Once the Performers leave, the viewer becomes a performer.

Deja Vu II. (02)

© Lenka Novakova    Deja Vu II La Chambre Blanche 2010



Technical Information:

4 Projectors
2 Interactive Cameras
3 Sheets of Glass

2 Slide Projectors

10 Slides (Eastern Penitentiary © Lenka Novakova)


Date of Creation 2010

Concept / Creation: Lenka Novakova

Choreography: Lenka Novakova
Performance: Katia-Maria Germain (La Chambre Blanche)
Performance: Students of UW (University of Wisconsin)
Performance: Liz Brownman (Gallery at La Crosse UW)

Photo/Video Credit © Lenka Novakova

Selected Exhibitions


University of Wisconsin, Gallery La Crosse, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA
‘Have I been here before?’, ‘How far are we?’ Exhibition, Artist Lecture
and performance in collaboration with UW students, Curated by Binod Shrestha


Hamilton Artist, Inc, Hamilton, ON, Canada
‘Have I been here before’ Exhibition, Performance and Artist talk, Curated by Irene Laughlin
Performance in collaboration with Karijn Dejong, interview: Kristina deMelo

La Chambre Blanche Quebec, Quebec, Canada
Production and Exhibition Residency

SESC Pinheiros, et l’Atelie NOVO – Integracao Action Sao Paulo : Quebec
Echange artistique entre la ville de Quebec et Sao Paulo
Ce project est le fruit d’un partenariat entre Le Lieu, centre en art
Actuel, Avatar, La bande Video, La Chambre Blanche et L’oeil de poisson


Have I been here before - Hamilton Artist Inc.

© Lenka Novakova 2010