December 22, 2009

Philip Beesley Artist Presentation (Elisa)

Philip Beasley is interested in the boundaries between nature and artifice, and explores this question by creating artificial environments which feel like nature and create an experience for viewers in which they are immersed and play important roles in the creation of the experience.

Orgone Reef is a speculation of what the skin of a building could be like in the future. The project is an interlinking matrix manufactured by a computer-controlled laser cutter. The project probes the possibilities of combining artificial and natural processes to form a hybrid ecology.

Beesley is infuenced by Spiritualism, a 19th century religious movement related to Quakerism which believed that we can communicate with the spirit world.

He's an architect using architectural textiles to bridge the technology research in architecture with the arts.

As I learned about his work I made a list of words to define: Sensors, proximity detectors, muscle wires: shape memory alloy, actuators, "distributed networks of microprocessors", Capacitors. Now i have a much better sense of what all of these things do.

November 19, 2009

Perry Hoberman

Perry Hoberman teaches in and works with digital media at the University of Southern California School of Cinema Television. Although dedicated to teaching in recent years, Perry has created several notable, award winning, pieces in the past. These include his works System Maintenance and Bar Code Hotel. I'm particularly drawn to Hoberman's work in Bar Code Hotel. Perry's use of an everyday consumer icon, the barcode, in an interactive fashion is both creative and thought provoking.

Usually I see the digital world of the barcode affecting me. When I purchase an item, a task that typically requires the scanning of a bar code, I am personally affected because I have less money and a new product. It is interest to see the tables turned in which the scanning affects another, in-organic creature.

Much like how the scanning of a barcode affects me through my purchase of an item, the scanning of a barcode affects the inorganic programmed objects within the virtual barcode hotel world. If I purchase a movie I'll likely become lazy, staying home and watching it on my couch. If I purchase a case of beer I'll likely fall into a jolly state of inebriation.

Similarly, each barcode in barcode hotel gives a virtual representation certain characteristics. Scan one barcode and the representation may become aggressive, scan another and it may become docile. Each virtual character is influenced by the barcode, much like the modern consumer.

You can check out more of Perry's projects at

Theo Jansen - Kinetic Sculptor

November 12, 2009

Golan Levin (Artist Presentation) - Nick Gentle


Golan Levin is a new media artist exploring new modes of what he calls "reactive expression". Levin's academic credentials include a bachelors degree in Art and Design from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as well as a Masters degree in Media Arts and Sciences from the MIT Media Lab. The bottom line; he's a (very much so) tech savvy artist that enjoys the interactivity aspect of art.

"Golan Levin's artwork focuses on the design of systems for the creation, manipulation and performance of simultaneous image and sound, as part of a more general inquiry into formal languages of interactivity and of nonverbal communication in cybernetic systems. Through performances, digital artifacts, and virtual environments, often created with a variety of collaborators, Levin applies creative twists to digital technologies that highlight our relationship with machines, make visible our ways of interacting with each other, and explore the intersection of abstract communication and interactivity".

I think Wikipedia explains his line of interest in his artist work the best. He's experimented with a number of different technologies, the most notable being his "Cell Phone Symphony" where he programmed thousands of cell phone ring tones to sound at his command, simulating an orchestral experience in an auditorium setting. This is a very unique take on venturing away from the primary utilitarian purpose of a cellular phone.

Here is a link to his website. A decent portion of his projects have been in collaboration with another artist in the interactive field.

November 5, 2009

Mehmet (Memo) Akten & United Visual Artists

For my artist presentation I explored two artists; Memo Akten and the United Visual Artists

here are a couple cool examples of Memo's Work:

Memo uses mostly C++ and Frameworks to create his art.


Another piece that caught my eye was by the United Visual Artists

They used 3D cameras and BumbleBee2 to create this Dance and light show

These artists inspire me to do similar work that use dance and technology to create visually stimulating interactive performances

Oron Catts & Ionat Zyrr: Tissue Culture & Art Project


PowerPoint Presentation: TissueCulture&ArtProject.ppt

November 3, 2009

Eyebeam Studio

I presented on Eyebeam, a collaborative studio located in New York City. Eyebeam emphasizes open source and community-oriented projects, such as Windowfarms and Graffiti Research Lab. Their site:

October 23, 2009

Julia Masvernat

Masvernat is an Argentinian artist, born 1973 in buenos aires. She works as a visual artist and graphic designer. Her work is developed through various medias and techniques: wooden objects, cutout paper installation, shadow projections, interactive audiovisual games, web platforms. The intimate relationship with the materials and their transformations (of form and meaning) is a recurring theme in her projects. She has exposed works in various individual and group shows (C.C.R.Rojas, C.C. Recoleta, CCEBA, arteBA, VideoBrasil, Fundación Telefónica, Fundación PROA, Galería BM). She is a university professor in electronic art and gives a youth-oriented workshop in visual arts. She's now working for a Non Governmental Organization teaching kids from a poor neighbourhood.

"What I like to do is take one thing and turn it into another, with few resources, like a transformation action. The idea is to put all of this in context: the city, the country, what is going on around us"

Ten years ago she started working for one of the most important argentine newspapers, and discovered the Internet. She worked on design and other products. "It's all about experience and perception: colours, sounds, I like people to get inside my work and participate in it."

October 22, 2009

It's Chris O'Shea!

For all your entertainment and inspirational needs, look no further:

October 8, 2009

Chico MacMurtrie

Tyler Williams
Artist Presentation

Chico MacMurtrie was born in New Mexico in 1961. He studied at the University of Arizona and went on to earn a Masters in Fine Arts from the University of California at Los Angeles. He is the director of the Amorphic Robot Works, which is a group of artists, technicians and programmers that work with machines sculptures that interact with their environments.

I enjoy the work of Chico MacMurtrie because of his unique ability to bring organic life to robots and machines. The machines that he builds have many organic characteristics and they often take on a life of their own. The viewer doesn't look at his creations as though they are machines but instead the viewer believes that he/she is interacting with another life form.

In his creation "Growing Raining Tree", MacMurtrie has created an amorphic tree that reacts to its surrounding environment. MacMurtrie uses the idea of interactivity because as viewers come near the tree, the limbs begin to stretch towards the viewer. The tree also responds to amount of sunlight that is in the room and occasionally it will rain out of its limbs based on the weather. The viewer is left to ponder artificial nature, the relationship between humans and nature and the way nature responds to its environment.

In his creation "Skeletal Reflections", has created a mimicking robotic skeleton. The robot mimics the gestures of the viewer based on a database of poses from throughout art history. Thus MacMurtrie again utilizes viewer interaction such that the viewers are in control of the robots movements, however the fact that the machine can only choose poses from art history the viewer must also think about the relationship between art and the machines as well as the viewer and machine.

The larger body of work from MacMurtrie fallows similar themes of interactivity and the transformation of machine into organic life. "Inflatable Architechture" is one of his newest installations and it uses many of the ideas from "Growing Raining Tree". The structures seem to grow as they are filled with air and becoming life like. This is another concept that is illustrated in "Totemobile" in which he transforms a car into a flowerlike totem pole.

I think that work of Chico MacMurtie is reminiscent of the work of Jim Henson because of his ability to bring objects to life. Although Chico MacMurtrie does this with advanced machinery and Jim Henson primarily uses puppetry, they both share an unbelievable knowledge of the movement of creatures and plants and they both use this knowledge to create immersive environments.

The work of Chico MacMurtie has inspired me to try to hide the technology that is powering the artwork not by covering it but by making the movements of the creature so life like that the viewer is not interested in how the creation works but is instead focused on their interaction with this creation. I also like the way that in some of his works he has created a totally immersive environment. That is also something that I want to take away with me and utilize in my own projects.

October 6, 2009

Justin Berken

Presenting Brendan Dawes 10/08

September 29, 2009


October 8th
1) Elisa
2) Tyler

October 15th
1) Robin
2) Mike

October 22nd
1) Szavio

October 27th
1) Carl
2) Matt
3) Nick
4) Bryce

November 5th
1) Alec
2) Jane
3) Maj

September 15, 2009

Artist Presentations

Artist Presentations are designed to encourage you to find out about a range of artists who are working in the genre of New Media :: Making Art Interactive.

Chose an artist or collaborative group of artist as the focus of your presentation.

Plan a 20 minute presentation followed by a discussion based on a question that you pose to the group.

Include the following in your Artist Presentation:

- Background information about the artist.

- Discuss what attracted you to the work of this artist.

- Highlight two examples of this artist's work and and use these to describe the artist's relationship to ideas of interactivity.

-Describe how these works relate to the artist's larger body of work.

- Relate this artist, via content, process, technology, perspective, etc. to that of another contemporary artist or artists from another time period.

Discuss how this artist's work informs your own thinking.

Following your presentation, enter a post on the blog that includes:

- a description of why you chose this artist
- links to examples of the artist's work
- a discussion of how this artist's work and/or process informs your thinking.

Introduce yourself to the work of a range of artists:

- Stephen Wilson's links

- Amy Young's links

- Ken Rinaldo's links

- Hiroshi Ishii's Tangible Media Group

- We Make Money Not Art

- Rhizome