Sarah Choi – Looking Outwards – 01

Summer of 2017, Yayoi Kusama held an exhibition in the National Gallery of Singapore. She has been more widely known as a contemporary artist. She created an expansive vision of the human body through a collection of interactive art called, “Life is the Heart of a Rainbow”. Working in Shinjuku, Japan, she worked with canvas using patterns and the stroke of waves that created the basis of most of her art. This work of various art took her around eight years to complete. Inspired, by paintings mainly from the 1950’s, Kusama further developed her works of art through contemporary mediums such as using LED Light. One of her most well-known pieces is called the “Infinity Mirrored Room – Gleaming Lights of the Souls”.  Her infinity mirror rooms transform the continuous and repetitive approach of her also famous net and dot paintings. This room-scale installation with kaleidoscopic environments bring another interactive experience to her audience, as she uses LED lights, metal, wooden and acrylic panels, and mirrors to create this art.

Yayoi Kusama

Life is the Heart of a Rainbow, 2017

Ilona Altman- Looking Outwards 01 – Fluid Leaves

In this project the designer Reinoud van Laar created a new brand concept for the tea company Tee & Cupp in Xian.He did so by creating a pattern for the company that was created generatively, by simulating the movement of leaves in hot water. Thus, tea becomes defined in terms of a process rather than a product. I found this project very beautiful because its is interesting that a corporate project could become so poetic. The pattern of the tea leaves swirling in hot water makes me think about those practices of reading the leaves to see your future. It is also interesting because this project was made individually and with Processing, so it is something that maybe we could make someday, with enough practice. A way I think they could have expanded this project however would be to pay greater attention to materially. It would have been lovely to see these patterns on ceramics.

the project fluid dynamics in action, crafted as a pattern for a tea company
photos of some of the generated patterns
still of fluid dynamics digital simulation

It also poetic to me how the ebb and flow of natural life is both a visual and temporal pattern. It is interesting that this element of chance determines composition. It makes me think about the Fluxus movement and John Cage, with his chance operations. Others that set precedents for generative patterns include Georg Nees and Vera Molner, who created works within a strict set of rules. There works are like maps of the relationship between order and chaos.

Vera Molner, a possible precedent and one of the first generative artists

(the first link is a link to the fluid leaves project and the next one links to some history of early generative art).

Fallon Creech – Looking Outwards-01

Drawing machine marking dots on canvas

Wellograph, designed by TehranPlatform, targets environmental concerns through performative art. Using a mobile drawing machine, the installation produces a set of square drawings that represent the amount of wells located around disappearing lakes in Iran. The interactions this product incites with its viewers is a relatively simple one; they follow the drawing machine’s movements as it repetitively pinpoints each of these wells on an abstracted map. I appreciate the artists’ gesture in this story-like depiction. The viewer begins their experience by watching the drawing machine mark similar dots on a page before it ultimately composes the final image, in which it finally reveals itself as a map. To complete this process, the artists designed a robot that projects a 2D image onto a canvas along with an ArUco marker that draws the dots on the canvas.

Minjae Jeong – Looking Outwards – 01

Cool 3D world is a collaborative multimedia project between Brian Tessler and Jon Baken. Cool 3D world is known for short absurd 3D animations on social media such as instagram and Youtube.

Jacob and the Giraffe by Cool 3D World

Couple reasons why the project by Tessler and Baken inspires me are that I’ve always wanted to create animated videos which I can express my imagination. As seen above, the animation is something else that we do not expect to see in reality. It’s bizarre, calming mood and characters in each animation keeps it uncomfortable but interesting enough to look for different animations that stimulates my thoughts. Cool thing about 3D animation is that it allows creators to fully utilize their imagination and let them express all.

Rachel Shin-LO-01

Polina Efremova is a Berlin-based photographer who has merged two digital eras into a single artform. Efremova runs digital video through an old PC which glitches, allowing her to screenshot the glitches and therefore providing a newly created artform that conjoins the digital ages decades apart. This project interested me because it embarks upon an artform that conjoins two juxtaposing ages in which old and new are merged together. I appreciate Efremova’s effort to utilize the “antiques” that are so easily discarded nowadays as it also represents the distorted and imperfect nature of our world today. While most photographers would turn to their macBooks with Adobe software to import, edit, and export their photos, Efremova uses a unique system to produce her artwork. This might have been more effective by collecting several old PCs, allowing her to produce several versions of this art style. However, it does produce a distorted reflection of society today. 

Here we see one of Efremova’s many “glitched works.” Efremova creates this images by running new technology through old.

Efremova describes that she accidentally discovered her art style in 2013 when she “installed a new video player on a very old PC” (Pangburn, VICE). She claims to not remember why she decided to try running her Canon footage through her PC. Even as a photographer, Efremova often worked with film to produce her work, but after this happy and sudden discovery, Efremova has decided to go forth to produce videos in this distorted, glitching style.

Glitch: Merging Old and New

Jacky Tian – Looking Outwards – 01

Technology, Engineering and Art Expression

Millennium Bridge in London

On June 1oth, 2ooo, a new walkway the link the city of London with the historical district of St. Paul’s Cathedral was completed across the Thames River. The 325 meters long Millennium Bridge in London is the winning entry of an international architectural ‘bridge building’ competition.

The competition entry was name of “the blade of lights” with innovative steel structure, supported by complex engineering calculation done by varies computational design and simulation tools. The designer group, Foster and Partners worked with a specific technology company as well as a famous sculptor, Sir Anthony Caro.

The Millennium Bridge in London perfectly demonstrates how technology can affect bridge engineering towards a more artistic expression and tectonic patterns in design. The

Erin Lim – Looking Outwards- 01 Section D

Video documentary of Magic Leap’s AR video game Dr. Grordbort’s Invaders. Source: Next Reality: Hands-On with Magic Leap & Weta Workshop’s Dr. Grordbort’s Invaders by Adario Strange

This is a fascinating project developed by New Zealand studio Weta Workshop and partnered by Magic Leap.  It was actually a WIP for nearly a decade, when Magic Leap CEO Rony Abovitz met with Weta Workshop’s CEO Richard Taylor to introduce and develop this video game.  In this game, users experience an AR gaming experience using Magic Leap technology in their surroundings.

To start, users use Magic Leap One to map out their surrounding walls, floors, and furniture.  A spatial audio guides them to map out the room and not to let too much light in, or else the mapping will pause. The Control device acts as a weapon, and the author of this article reported the tracking was accurate 85% of the time.

One cool feature is how you can use your hand not holding a device as a shield, and may even feel a tingle.  The game tracks your hand and allows you to use your physical hand in the AR game.  This is particularly interesting because it points to a future that holds the intertwining of physical human touch with AR. This can especially be seen in the workplace, home, and public space/services. Another feature I admire is the crispness and vividness of the designs.  The main character, Dr. Grordbort, is seen translucent, while the rest of the bots are perfectly vivid.  This is fascinating how designers/programmers can create the difference in texture and precision in these AR figures.

Kristine Kim- Looking Outward-01

“The More you Connect the Less you Connect” is a project based on memory fragmented nature and an interactive meditation on childhood and memory mechanism. This piece was part of the School for Poetic Computation 2019 Spring Session Showcase, NYC. I was drawn into this video installation because the film itself contained a lot of distortion and abstract editing, which is very similar to my style as an artist. The artists use their family and raw footages from a VHS family video from the 1990s as their main subject. Even though the film itself is very loud and energetic, this piece is very strangely soothing to me. The usage of physical colored cables and the user being able to plug them in and out was very appealing to my eyes. More than a critique, I wonder how this project would be like if the scale was more monumental so that it could convey the feeling of being consumed into the “memories” of the past.

Zee Salman-Looking Outwards-01

I watched my best friend code in 112 for the first time last year and it inspired me you also learn how to code. I would see them work on their 112 projects during the end of the fall semester and would just be in awe. It was so cool I remember a project that was interactive by using hand motions and head motions and it was all done with code. The graphics were amazing and it really inspired me to do some type of coding at CMU. This project was really fun, It took some time and I struggled a lot but in the end, I created something that I thought was pretty cute. I would definitely want to go back and tweak when I have honed other skills from 104 and have gained new knowledge that I can use to improve it. One thing I look forward to in future classes and assignments is more ways to make the final project interactive or exciting.

Carly Sacco – Looking Outwards – 01

The Cell Phone Disco shows a visual representation of cell phones in the area.

The Cell Phone Disco located in Pittsburgh is an interactive visualization of active mobile phones in the area. This project was created through the collaboration between artists from Informationlab and engineers. There are sixteen antennas that scan and receive the electromagnetic data from cell phones where eight processors then emit lights in the display to give a visual representation on a 16′ by 16′ LED board.

I thought this project was particularly inspiring and interesting because the placement of the installation is in an alley. Therefore, there are not many cell phone signals the art could receive besides the few people interacting closely. I think not only is this a thoughtful move on the artists behalf to have the piece largely exhibit an intimate signal, but that because people would have to go out of their way to find it, the piece holds more significance once found.

Viewer watching the display caused by the electromagnetic field emitted from their cell phone.