The exhibitions "On the Shores" brought to you by PLUNC are made out of a selection of works that have been spread on both shores of the river Tagus. We therefore depart with an introduction to “interactivity” as one of the areas in digital art and new media - through the selected works - revealing different ways in which the material and the digital relate and come close to one another, not only to a specialised and familiarised audience, but to passengers and passersby who daily cross the river.
There are 4 different locations where you can find these works:
The ferry terminals:
- Cais do Sodré
- Cais de Cacilhas
The Almada Shore:
- Ginjal Terrace
- Casa da Cerca - Centro de Arte Contemporânea
The Nervous Structure series consists of interactive installations that revolve around the idea of interface, interpreted as the point of contact between two different entities. The work consists of several such interfaces: between the viewer and the piece (a human/ computer interface); between the real and the virtual (the physical structure and its relationship with the projected structure); between the foreground and the background (as the projection interferes with its shadow). The pieces consist of a soft structure made out of elastic or spandex and a projector that illuminates it with computer-generated graphics. Viewers interact with the piece by moving in the field of vision of a camera, which is connected to the computer; this motion is transformed by the software into forces that affect the projected lines.
The Mamori Expedition
A wooden installation replicates the path that artist Els Viaene followed during an expedition through the Brazilian Amazon Forest in 2009. The three wooden arms of the sculpture are a scale model of the Amazon River and are filled with water. A headset and a hammer-like stick, the 'hydrophone', allow you to ""hear"" the water. Once you insert the stick into the water and you move along the twists and turns of the sculpture, the sounds Viaene recorded during the expedition are reproduced. The Mamori Expedition catapults the viewer into the middle of the Amazon forest and invites the viewer to explore the river and its sounds in a very tactile way.
Concept, audio registration and technical realization: Els Viaene / Wooden model: Jeroen Verschuren / Microphone: Johan Vandermaelen / Coproduction: Netwerk Aalst / With the support of the flemish authorities, Q-O2 and Werktank / Distribution: Werktank
Paperbots is a small device built with LEGO Mindstorms that reacts to motion or presence by moving paper foldings. It combines digital and physical computation, i.e., low tech kinetic properties of materials - the memory of folded paper - with visual coding and mechanical actuators as found in LEGO Mindstorms. Paperbots are artbots that want to challenge the common perception of what a robot is through its ephemeral qualities, fragility and playfulness, as well as the ease of construction and reproduction. The objects in the exhibition are the result of the workshop held prior to the festival.
A generation of artists and hackers have emerged on the internet, inventing open source technologies for art and design. CLOUDS is an interactive documentary and a portrait of this community of digital pioneers explored through the lens of code and networks. Creative coding is broadly considered the first global art movement of the internet age, and CLOUDS is the most comprehensive documentary on the work of these artists. A new research mode gives viewers an opportunity to dive deeper into all 10 hours of interviews with 40 artists around 150 topics. Participants of the documentary include: Aaron Koblin, Casey Reas, Daniel Shiffman, Golan Levin, Jesse Rosenberg, John Maeda, Karolina Sobecka, Kyle McDonald, Memo Akten and Zach Lieberman, among others.
In Amachina the autonomy of the interface to the computer is taken as an added value to the work of interactive art, a statement based on the possibility that an interactive machine without digital control is able to act as an interface between human and computer. The interface will become the work of art itself, thereby bringing the contemplative attitude of the whole and the discovery of the interface to a same level; the noise that the interface may add to the contemplation of an interactive artwork will then be attenuated.
Author and Production - José Carlos Neves;
Concept Discussion - José Gomes Pinto;
Methodology Discussion - Inês Secca Ruivo;
Advice - António Martins (eletrónica/ electronics), João Trindade (áudio/audio);
Beta Tester - Rebecca;
Support - ULHT, Leroy Merlin;
Acknowledgment - Odete Barata Neves, Pedro Costa Silva (PtRobotics), Edward (Meccano Spares), Luís Costa e Marco Raposo.
Tweeting Antennas is a site-specific installation that explores the relationship between new and old media in today’s hybrid public spaces. It proposes to render visible the digital communication processes that are usually invisible. In particular, it translates geo-localized tweets into the real-time movement of a roof TV antenna. For each alphabetic character the antenna moves into the corresponding position of the Flag Semaphore System. The project is the outcome of a research on the relationships between people and technology in the urban space. In today’s cities, new media and digital technologies are used mostly for surveillance, control and advertising purposes. However, we are not usually aware of technological ubiquity in the city and how it conditions our experience of urban space. Eventually, by becoming more organized and optimized for better performance, cities are at risk of minimizing the human factor and the room for spontaneous and random events. The aim of this project is to explore the possibilities of digital technologies in order to create urban interventions that can render the city a more playful, unexpected and heterogeneous place. By appropriating dead media, Tweeting Antennas proposes a play of contrasts from visible to invisible communication processes, from high to low tech, from contemporary to dead or forgotten media and from virtual to physical environments. The first version of the project was developed within the Master's course in Communication Design and New Media at the Faculty of Fine Arts - University of Lisbon.
In the context of PLUNC exhibition the installation will be placed in two sites. The antennas will be placed in Casa da Cerca in the terrace facing the river and Cais do Sodré terminal. A spectator has go to Casa da Cerca to physically see the antennas working. In Cais do Sodré terminal there will be binoculars where spectators can remotely see the antennas working in the other side of the river, after sending a tweet, addressing the concept of surveillance and message codification.