Even if the music isn't great, the idea is fun! This machine would make Gabo really jealous and he probably would remake his ping ball wall at FABRICA.
Arthur Ganson uses mechanical elements to generate randomness. The 'Thinking Chair' replicates Arthur's walk as he potters around the park coming up with ideas, whilst 'Margot's other cat' replicates low gravity and was inspired by the moon landing.
This contraption by Sachiko Kodama called 'Potrude, Flow' had metalic elements in a liquid solution which could be manipulated by magnets. It reminded me of a recent commercial done by Collider in 3D.
Touch this sound! Such a fun installation must be posted. Vinil discs were part of my childhood (yes, only my childhood, I'm pretty young still) and I always wanted to touch the disc player and discover different sounds from XUXA's music. My father forbid me to try it. So... years later Yuri Suzuki made my wish become true and this time with U2!
PS. This video was recorded by Andy Cameron
After see this piece of the exibition, the GENPETS didn't leave my thoughts. Do you think we will reach this sad reality? I really don't think it is impossible. More and more I see people losing touch with other beings.
'Opera Calling' is an intervention art project by the Swiss Media group Bitnik. By secretly placing audio-bugs in the Zurich Opera the Swiss public was given access to otherwise quite expensive opera performances through their telephone lines. The recorded phone 'conversations' with local listeners show confusion but also approval of the project. I liked the idea of forcing the elitist high culture world of opera into every day life at home.
Time to throw some stones, if you let me. The "Animatronic Flesh Shoe", by Canadian artist Adam Brandejs is a grotesque latex Nike shoe, rigged for subtle motion (even though I didn't see any). Discomforting at first and second glance, the work doesn't seem to evolve from that. It felt a bit out of touch with the other works portrayed in the exhibition, and it's just an obvious rendering of this year's theme, Human Nature. The artist's second piece on display, "GenPets", seemed to artistically convey much more.
an installation by Gebhard Sengmüller
Two panels connected through 2,500 copper cables makes this interactive installation extremely beautiful to see. The light impulses are transformed into electrical currents; the transmitted electric signals are ultimately transposed into light values on a screen again, and the picture lines are then recomposed synchronously in time.
“A Parallel Image” is technologically completely transparent, conveying to the viewer a correspondence between real world and transmission that can be sensually experienced.
More info here: http://gebseng.com/08_a_parallel_image/
Recently launched, the new Ars Electronica Center was designed by Treusch Architecture, an austrian-based studio. It features 38500 LEDs divided through 1100 glass panels. The RGB lights can be fully programmed using a different array of tools (eg. Max/MSP, Processing, VVVV), and the building also has built-in SMS capabilities. For the opening of the festival, artists Zachary Lieberman and Daito Manabe were invited to present a 10-minute show, and students and developers can also pre-test their work using an environment developed by the Ars Electronica Futurelab. The video shown above is a visualization made by Ingrid Stürmer based on bacteria patterns.
Winner of an Honorary Mention at Ars Electronica Animation awards, "Chick" is the artistic rendering of an intense male-female relationship, a "Saul Bass-flavored" short animation by Polish graphic and animation artist Michal Socha, You can find a preview at:
'Cala Maris' is a film and installation project by Austrian multi-media artist Markus Huber. It is part of the permanent exhibition at the Ars Electronica Center.
I especially liked the installation in one of the elevators, which gives the impression of floating in the deep sea surrounded by fluorescent jellyfish. I could have gone up and down that elevator all day long. It reminded me of one of my favourite books 'The Deep' by Claire Nouvian.
Roman Signer is an artist who uses a scientific process in amusing ways. Most of his videos deploy explosives to create an absurd cause-effect relationship, as seen in this video where a chair that explodes on one side of a table breaks apart a chair on the other side, after the chair piece has fallen back to the earth.
What makes his work really interesting is the imaginative deconstruction of the scientific process to create a new kind of process. The results are not interesting, but it is the playful method that engages and stimulates your curiosity.
'Bios (Bible)' by robotlab addresses the ancient battle between religion and science by letting a robotic arm write down the entire 66 books of the bible. In the course of seven months it places calligraphic letters onto paper rolls with high precision.
I liked the contrast between the cold robotic steel arm and the sensitive tip of the calligraphic pen scratching into the paper. It reminded me of frescos of monks in San Niccolo's church in Treviso, meticulously re-writing religious texts.
Copying the bible used to be a sacred act and if there was only a slight mistake the whole page, or even scroll would have to be destroyed. The robotic arm doesn't waste time on details. Half of the pages that were on display had mistakes in them, which made me think about whether robots are really capable of more perfection than we are.
Featured on the Device Art exhibition at the Ars Electronica Center, Touch the Small World from the Japanese artist Hideyuki Ando is a tiny piece with huge potential. At a first glance the work consists in a simple black and white touchscreen, but when the elements in the screen (simple lines, shapes and patterns) are touched the magic happens; they trigger a spot vibration that is able to realize a perceptual illusion of surface on the fingertips.
This piece can be seen as the first practical solution to a real interaction problem introduced by the explosion of the usage of touchscreen devices: the lack of haptic perception. Though the iPhone and other gadgets with the same touch capabilities have created some new and powerful ways of interacting with a system, they completely denied how important the sense of touch is for the human-machine interaction, binding the vision as an obligatory sense for the experience. Touch the Small World is important insight that may lead to relevant improvements in the interface design state of the art.
During Ars Electronica, in the main square of Linz, was set up the isle of the 80+1, A Journey Around the World. Most of the works featured shared the same idea of connecting locations in the world in real time with unusual approaches; from virtual handshakes to aroma transportation.
One of the exhibited pieces that cleared attracted people attention was the Rope in Space, conceptualized by the Ars Electronica Futurelab, a simulation of the "rope pulling" game but with the participants in different locations. One of the units was set up in the isle and the other one in the Ars Electronica Center (it could be in any other place in the world).
Besides the confusing graphic interface, the machine was so simple and appealing that is was impossible to not have fun with it. One would hold the rope at one side, until a opponent appears on the other side and the game can start, usually gathering a small crowd around. Quite often a completely stranger, seeing one of the participants disadvantage, would stand out and join the game, creating a light and entertaining environment for everyone.
Rope in Space may be perceived by one as only a high tech super expensive version of a 3,000 years old game; and this judgment would be complete valid. Though when we think in very nature of it as a web based interface that allows physical interactions we can see the great value that the piece stands for; it makes us think in how poorly we explore the virtual connections, that the internet can be much more than an exchanging of visual data, and the hyper-world can have form, weight and be touched by our own hands.
...paintable instruments. Simply paint with a battery powered electronic brush in one hand, and touch the paint with the other. I can see this on Christmas lists already.
It's Nice That just released a second issue containing highlights from their blog and interviews with Boo Ritson, Rafaël Rozendaal, United Visual Artists, Karlssonwilker and more. They have also released an exclusive screen print by Rob Ryan which comes with every copy of the publication pre-ordered before midnight on 30 September. We're looking forward to getting a copy of this!
Another stand-out piece at the Lentos museum was this experiment with sound and image. John Baldessari found images from National Geographic, then called Ed Henderson on the phone and described the image to him. Ed, in turn, tried to find appropriate songs that would match the image. This entire phone call is recorded and played with the video of Baldessari pinning up images, one at a time. It's very low-tech, but immensely appealing in spite of this; its the narrative that engages the viewer more than anything else.
This year at the Lentos Museum at Ars Electronica, there was a special exhibition dealing with sound art. The works were quite diverse, and it was an amazing collection - some of the artists included were Max Neuhaus, Brion Gyson, Ira Cohen, David Rokeby, John Baldessari, and the list goes on. One of my favorites was an installation of a table by Laurie Anderson called "The Handphone Table". You sit at a table and music underneath of the table is conducted through your bones, as you hold your hands to your ears. The hollows within the table act as loudspeakers. It is an intimate way of hearing as well as feeling music.
This is our last night here at ARS Electronica. This year has been particularly special because Linz is European capital of culture and the festival is celebrating its 30 year anniversary. It's been wonderful exploring the events around the city, and the new ARS Center.
Over the next few days we'll be sharing what we have seen.