bluemonochrome.com (2008) - Jan Robert Leegte

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Google Is Not The Map (2008) - Les Liens Invisibles

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Statement: Since ancient times cartography has been used to describe the world as a geometric ensemble of measurable points, lines, areas and data-labels on a plane. While the world slowly fades away in an increasingly multiplication of self-representations, the map making process - missing its real reference - becomes nothing more than an empty-meaning abstract practice: so, what do all those maps stand now for?

In order to disclose this contradiction - or just to give a paradoxical point of view about it - the imaginary art-group Les Liens Invisibles has explored the world along its self-referential techno-linguistic layers, moving through its hidden mechanisms and forcing the grammar of its public-released API code.

This project was commissioned by LX 2.0 - a project by Lisboa 20 Arte Contemporãnea and curated by Luis Silva

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Laps (2008) - Art of Failure (Nicolas Maigret and Nicolas Montgermont)

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LAPS 2008 from art of failure on Vimeo.


Artist's statement: Laps is an audio and visual installation that uses Internet as an imaginary space where sound echoes, reverberates throughout the Web. Based on transmission errors, the sound material is shaped by the virtual acoustic space of the network. Sound streams broadcasted within the installation structure gradually echoes the activity of the Web in various locations of the globe. Its analysis in these various points is used to progressively draw the contours of an imaginary landscape inside the installation.

(via Network Research)

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Self Portrait With Dog (2008) - Carlo Zanni

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One Mile Scroll (2008) - Daniel Eatock

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"The One Mile Scroll transforms virtual space into an actual, physical distance. Take your computer for a scroll."

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Tools of the Trade: Albert Hwang's WireMap

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In this installment of Tools of the Trade, tech writer Melody Chamlee describes Albert Hwang's project Wiremap. - Ceci Moss

In a combination of software development and 3D interface design, Albert Hwang's Wiremap is a multi-view map created with strands of fishing wire that refract 3D projector scenes and bounce back the revolving imagery to viewers - producing a representation of an object in 3D space.

According to Hwang, from the projector's single-point perspective (at the very front of the installation) all the wires appear evenly spaced. Move off to the left or right however, and by degrees the randomized dimension of depth settles on the wires at different angles to create a topographical form.

Hwang says he would like to explore wire displays in a broad range of new installations and is already working on expanded tweaks on the current design to have a bigger, more detailed display framework. In his Wiremap installation at the the 2008 Last Hope Conference in Midtown Manhattan, he was able to produce a green and blue globe with topography and directional changes according to keyboard and mouse input.

To create Wiremap, Hwang used the open source programming language Processing, and says it was an ideal platform for the project:

"When I began...I had very little computer programming experience. Knowing what I needed, I waded through Java GUI tutorials only to be continually faced with frustratingly confusing Java jargon - I needed a programming environment designed to give graphic feedback instead of visual feedback. Processing, an open source programming environment built on top of Java turned out to be a perfect fit for the project."

Since this is open source, Hwang provides his downloadable source files on his site and encourages others to develop their own Wiremaps and contribute to the evolution of ...

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Last Breath in Alaska (Found Object) (2008) by Pascual Sisto

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In this work by Pascual Sisto, a plastic bag obstructs the Google Maps Street View of Minnie Street in Fairbanks, Alaska. Discovered while researching Google Maps Street View, Sisto preserves this "found object" by redirecting it to its own url, lastbreathinalaska.com, as well as capturing it as a back-up video, in case Google decides to reshoot the location. Swirling on a constant panoramic loop, the movement of the camera gives the abstract image an almost 3D-like quality. The piece documents Google's fraught attempt to supply an accurate representation of Minnie Street, and, as such, Sisto sees Last Breath in Alaska (Found Object) as a response to the purportedly omniscient eye of the Street View feature, and the issues of transparency and privacy it raises. - Ceci Moss

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Google Street view van by Joe McKay (2008)

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This Google "steet view" van image by Joe McKay is created entirely from reflections of the van in store windows in San Francisco.

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Summer in the City

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Designer/researcher Greg J. Smith has curated an online exhibition that surveys twelve of the most influential mapping-related new media projects of the last ten years. "City of Nodes" is the 21st show presented by CONT3XT.NET, who use social bookmarking site del.icio.us as a platform for their TAGallery. The sites Smith selected actually skim the longstanding relationship between tagging and urban studies, with a focus on cartography and locative media. In his curatorial introduction (in this case, a "tag description"), Smith synthesizes Lewis Mumford's late-1930s conception of the city as "a nexus of social, creative, and economic collaboration," in contrast to William J. Mitchell's '90s era take on cities as including "not only asphalt and concrete, but bandwidth, code, and connectivity." This is the filter through which the twelve selected projects are viewed. They include the seminal Amsterdam Realtime (2002) project by Esther Polak and Jeroen Kee (the Waag Society) in which GPS devices worn by volunteers create a comparative portrait of the personal occupation of the city; iSee (2005), the Institute for Applied Autonomy's web-based program for locating CCTV cameras throughout a city and planning your travel route accordingly; and One Block Radius, Dave Mandl and Christina Ray's (a.k.a. Glowlab's) psychogeographic documentary of the immediate neighborhood surrounding what was then the future site of the new New Museum building. Given that so many of the selected projects are about tracing a collective experience, the folksonomic curatorial platform seems a perfect one on which to contemplate the work, with guest-curators' tags suggesting an interpretation before inviting viewers to travel off on their own. - Marisa Olson


Image: David Rokeby, Seen, 2002

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Interview with Aleksandra Domanovic

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Aleksandra Domanovic is a Berlin-based artist who works primarily on the internet. Much of her art contrasts and recontextualizes content derived online, such as found videos and Google Maps, in an effort to establish a dialogue between these different materials. I interviewed her via email. - Ceci Moss

You were born in Serbia, grew up in Slovenia and now reside in Berlin. Has this transnationalism inflected your work? How so?

I was born in Serbia, but in a Slovakian minority in Vojvodina. Hmm, I can't say how this expresses in my work...most of the artists I know are global nomads. I have a blurred sense of nationality and have no real feeling of belonging anywhere, which may explain my obsession with maps. I also lived in Vienna for six years and spend some time in Tokyo before moving to Berlin, and for now I still enjoy not having a permanent residence.

As a blogger for VVORK, you obviously spend a lot of time surfing the web. How does this daily routine influence your practice as an artist?

I became an artist through and with VVORK. Studying graphic design, but always making video on the side, I joined VVORK about one week after it was founded by Oliver, Georg and Christoph. Surfing the web extensively, seeing so much good work and discovering it for myself, motivated me.

You completed two projects which paired online mapping and video: Srbija Do Tokia and Tesla. Could you explain the concept behind these two works?

There are 3 pages: Srbija Do Tokia, Tesla and Holivud, all written as they are pronounced in Serbian language, which is the grammatically correct way of writing foreign words in Serbia. All reflect Serbian nationalism and the recent independence of Kosovo. The day after the declaration, there were videos ...

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