A deserted, snowy parking lot hangs under a dark sky. The few pale street lamps illuminate an unexpected sight—a sedan balanced vertically on its front fender. The only other witnesses to this strange event are the empty shells of three nearby cars. No, this isn't a storyboard from a Lynchian rendition of Cars 3, it's the latest 3D-printed diorama from artist Mathieu Schmitt's intensely atmospheric Glitched series.
Entitled Glitched #7, the vertical car scene is encased in a smoked glass box equipped with filters which block out 95% of all light. Only the sections of the sculpture illuminated by miniature street lamps are visible, "discernible only at a very short distance from the glass"—a design element Schmitt says is for "stimulating the viewer’s curiosity." You literally have to press your face up against the diorama's walls in order to take in the full scope of its detail.
That aforementioned detail is incredibly intensive. The Glitched series gets its name from the error-ridden printing process Schmitt put many of his models through. For example, in the first iteration of the series, he made a "classic suburban house" which he "forced to go through several stages of interpretation of the data, passing through various voluntarily inappropriate softwares, causing data corruption."
The result—from a distance—is nothing strange, but upon closer inspection the house's geometric warping becomes its defining feature. Not everything is as it seems in Schmitt's surreal mini worlds—but hey, not much is as it seems in our world, either. Maybe David Lynch will direct Cars 3.
Here are a few selected photos of the noir aesthetic captured in Glitched #1-7—can you spot the glitches inside?