Graduate Thesis Project, Fall 2009
Media Design Program, Art Center College of Design
"Curious Displays" functions simultaneously as a form of design research and as a speculative proposal for a new product, a future display technology.
The project explores our relationship with devices and technology by examining the multi-dimensionality of communication and the complexity of social behavior and interaction. In its essence, the project functions as a piece of design fiction, considering the fluctuating nature of our present engagement with media technology and providing futurist imaginings of other ways of being.
Curious Displays (2009) is a product proposal for a new platform for display technology. Instead of a fixed form factor screen, the display surface is instead broken up into hundreds of ½ inch display blocks. Each block operates independently as a self-contained unit, and has full mobility, allowing movement across any physical surface. The blocks operate independently of one another, but are aware of their position and role relative to the rest of the system. With this awareness, the blocks are able to coordinate with the other blocks to reconfigure their positioning to form larger display surfaces and forms depending on purpose and function. In this way, the blocks become a physical embodiment of digital media, and act as a vehicle for the physical manifestation of what typically exists only in the virtual space of the screen.
Traditionally, displays are fixed-size/ratio surfaces that provide an entry point to a defined experience with digital media content. This content is varied--informational, filmic, auditory, at times even spatial. However, the relationship between the user and the digital entities within the defined surface of the screen creates a sense of fragmentation between two distinct spaces. The virtual space of the screen provides a surface for media content to come alive, but is a distinct and marked separation from the physical space that the user occupies.
Curious Display "blocks" are tangible and tactile. They occupy and move through physical space, and are thus subject to the same spatial rules and limitations faced by any other physical objects. These constraints lend themselves to potentially interesting outcomes in terms of interactivity and negotiation. An abundance of questions quickly begin to surface--how do they move? How do they behave? Does this movement and behavior begin to allude to the development of a type of personality? How does one communicate with them? Where do they go when you're not using them? What role do they take on in our daily lives?
»Magic and Storytelling« is an interactive presentation about the history of storytelling augmented with virtual magic in real-time. It was produced and created by New York based cyber illusionist Marco Tempest in collaboration with onformative and checksum5.
more information: onformative.com/work/magic-and-storytelling/
Magic and Storytelling
Created and produced by Marco Tempest
in cooperation with onformative and checksum5
Special thanks to David Britland for his amazing script, Michael Ricar for the music and sound design. Tebjan Halm for additional vvvv programming and documentation sound. Enrico Viola for the relentless OF sandboxing and prototyping. Jason Saragih for sharing his FaceTracker library. Tobias Beckwith for the voice cameos, Sherry and Matt for being amazed and to Steve Cohen for bringing Jean Robert-Houdin to life one last time.
"Magic and Storytelling" is powered by vvvv.org
This short documentation video shows the MobiSpray event of University of Helsinki on 18.1.-21.1.2010. The Media artist Jürgen Scheible painted the main building of University of Helsinki at Senate Square and three other buildings in different campuses.