[spectre] Turbulence Commissions: Mixed Realities

Turbulence turbulence at turbulence.org
Tue Jun 5 16:07:43 CEST 2007

June 5, 2007
Turbulence Commissions: "Mixed Realities"
Venues: Ars Virtua (Second Life); Huret & Spector Gallery (Emerson College,
Boston); and Turbulence.org
With funds from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts

New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc. is pleased to announce the winners of
"Mixed Realities," an international juried competition and exhibition. The
five commissioned works ($5,000 each) will be exhibited simultaneously at
Ars Virtua (Second Life), Huret & Spector Gallery (Boston), and
Turbulence.org in spring 2008. They are:

John (Craig) Freeman
Usman Haque, Georg Tremmel and Neill Zero
Scott Kildall and Victoria Scott
Michael Takeo Magruder, Drew Baker and David Steele
Pierre Proske, with technical assistance from Artem Baguinski and Brigit

an extension of Freeman's "Imaging Place" project; a place-based, immersive,
virtual reality project that takes the form of a user navigated, interactive
computer program combining panoramic photography, digital video, and
three-dimensional technologies to investigate and document situations where
the forces of globalization are impacting the lives of individuals in local
communities. The famous Swiss mathematician Leonard Euler invented
Topology--the key to understanding how networks are formed--in the city of
Koenigsberg, now Kaliningrad, in 1735. When Euler visited the city, there
were seven bridges connecting the city's center to the banks of the Pregel
River. A favorite pastime for visitors was to try to solve the puzzle of
whether or not a person could walk throughout the city and cross each of the
bridges exactly once. Freeman will retrace the imaginary steps of Leonard
Euler across these seven bridges. Users will be able to navigate the virtual
space as the story of the seven bridges unfolds, as well as the story of how
globalization is impacting this remote Russian city. Full proposal here:

REMOTELY COUPLED DEVICES by Usman Haque, Georg Tremmel and Neill Zero: This
proposal takes as its starting point that the distinction between 'virtual'
and 'real' is as quaint as the nineteenth century distinction between 'mind'
and 'body'. As such, the spaces of Ars Virtua and Huret & Spector Gallery
will be treated equivalently. A device will be constructed for each space
which--via the EnvironmentXML framework--will enable people around the world
to build remote devices and environments that respond in real time to the
local environmental conditions of the two galleries. A Java applet and
historical data repository, residing on the Turbulence.org server, will
enable the tracking of real time and historical sensory data from the two
locations as well as the connections that people make over time. Full
proposal here: http://turbulence.org/comp_07/proposals/haque/index.html

NO MATTER by Scott Kildall and Victoria Scott: No Matter is an interactive
installation that translates the psychology of the Second Life virtual
economy into physical space. Virtual economies--where artificial currencies
are exchanged in online worlds for dematerialized goods and services--are
presently impacting the 'real' economy. The leakage of one to another
appears on eBay, on the SL Exchange and through virtual land brokers. This
mixed economic model overturns established relationships between labor and
production. As specialty items can be obtained at a fraction of their real
world cost, our perception of the value of objects becomes further obscured.
No Matter reflects this conflation of imaginary and real economics by: (1)
commissioning the creation of imaginary objects in Second Life; (2) inviting
viewers to re-construct these immaterial 3D objects in physical space; (3)
paying them Second Life wages; and (4) reselling the replicas on eBay. Full
proposal here:

THE VITRUVIAN WORLD by Michael Takeo Magruder, Drew Baker and David Steele:
In the 1st century BC, Roman writer, architect and engineer Vitruvius
authored specific building formulae based on the guiding principles of
strength, utility and beauty. For him, architecture is intrinsically linked
to nature and is an imitation of cosmic order. The most well-known
interpretation of this postulate is the Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci
in which the human form is depicted in unity with the square and
circle--representing material and spiritual existence respectively. Given
that this tripart union of human body, material form and spiritual essence
maintains relevance within the current climate of distributed presence,
mixed realities and internet culture, The Vitruvian World will embody the
principles of Vitruvius within a contemporary context. Full proposal here:

CATERWAUL by Pierre Proske, with technical assistance from Artem Baguinski
and Brigit Lichtenegger: When someone screams in real life, do they hear us
in virtual reality? Do they want to? The proliferation of networked online
worlds has provided a small quota of the human race the option to seek
refuge in utopian, less troubled imaginary lands. Rolling synthetic green
pastures offer us respite from a planet undergoing exploitation and climate
change. For those of us too firmly rooted in this material world to join
them, how shall we communicate with them? In what way shall we lament their
departure? The essence of Caterwaul is a large, monolithic, dark wall that
is represented both in the real and virtual worlds. It is a one-way portal
to the virtual world through which people can whisper their thoughts, scream
their frustrations and convey regret without the privilege of reply. It is a
wailing wall through which to mourn the loss of our humanity to the virtual
network. Full proposal here:

The competition was juried by Yasmine Abbas, Founder, Neo-Nomad; Michael
Frumin, Technical Director Emeritus, Eyebeam; James Morgan, Director, Ars
Virtua; Trebor Scholz, Founder, Institute for Distributed Creativity; and
Helen Thorington, Co-Director, Turbulence.

Jo-Anne Green, Co-Director
New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc.: http://new-radio.org
New York: 917.548.7780 . Boston: 617.522.3856
Turbulence: http://turbulence.org
Networked_Performance Blog: http://turbulence.org/blog
Networked_Music_Review: http://turbulence.org/networked_music_review
Upgrade! Boston: http://turbulence.org/upgrade 
New American Radio: http://somewhere.org

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