September 15, 2007
Fish & Locomotion

Augmented Fish Reality

Years before Terranaut II, Ken Rinaldo was enabling fish to move around spaces in various ways allowing them to encounter, interact, network with each other or people visiting the spaces.

Augmented Fish Reality (image above), documentation here or here, is one of the latest works (2004) featuring Siamese Fighting fish:

is an interactive installation of five rolling robotic fish-bowl sculptures designed to explore interspecies and transpecies communication.

These sculptures allow Siamese Fighting fish (Betta Splendons) to use intelligent hardware and software to move their robotic bowls – under their control…Small lipstick video cameras mounted under two of the bowls image the interior of the fish bowls as well as humans in this environment and these images are intercepted with video transceivers and projected back to the walls of the installation…the fish may choose to approach and/or move away from the human participants and each other. Humans interact with the work simply by entering the environment.

Delicate Balance

Delicate Balance (image above, video below), documentation here or here, an earlier work from 1993, shows a more limited but perhaps interestingly elegant mode of transportation for the fish. Here instead of moving through a space along the ground and in any direction as with Augmented Fish Reality (just as long as there are no stairs to foil these Dalek like creatures!!), the fish employing Delicate Balance can only move through a space delicately balanced on cables. This balancing act results in the fish resembling a bird (it’s balance arms resembling wings).

Delicate Balance designed to allow a fish to determine the direction that it moves along a wire, so it can explore it’s environment beyond the limits of the tank…The fish determines the direction by crossing a break – beam which activates the motor to move the tank in the direction which the fish looks to the outside world.

Posted by: Garrett @ 4:55 pm
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September 12, 2007
Dead Film

Dead Film

Dead Film (image above, video below) is another work by Wojciech Kosma which I couldn’t resist posting.

Again the network element here is simple, it is the effect sound and image have on each other through their analogue interaction. A camera videos and feeds into a broadcast television transmission. A microphone affects, adds to, the sound being produced by the television through a speaker. In turn the speaker, as it gains in volume through feedback, affects the tripod upon which the camera sits, finally knocking it over and changing the configuration of the network.

This is what seems to happen in the video presented by the artist yet once again no comment is provided on the artists site and what exactly is the mysterious box sitting on top of the television, is this the catalyst to the whole event or simply a contributing factor?

Posted by: Garrett @ 8:07 pm
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September 9, 2007


I don’t see nearly enough performance work these days but worse since, surprisingly little that employs a network or the suggestion of a network in some shape or form.

Four (image above, video below) is a performance with 4 laptop performers by Wojciech Kosma performed by Isabel Servan, Ana María Gutiérrez Domínguez and Javier Lobato López. Performed live at the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo in Seville, Spain the performance consists of laptops used as singular function devices to create a single light and sound when a key is pressed.

What’s quite nice about this, albeit simple performance which doesn’t hold up to any lengthy performance, is that the laptops are used similarly to traditional performance devices, such as musical instruments, and the network here is primarily the decision making of the performers based on their hearing and continual assessment of the composition of sound. Whether the software running on the laptops is wirelessly networked and each activation on one by pressing the key stops all others is ambiguous.

Originally seen at VVORK.

Posted by: Garrett @ 1:30 pm
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September 4, 2007
Two works by HC Gilje

The following are two installation works by HC Gilje concerning networks of some shape or form. Both are interactive works however while the second employs the classic interactive paradigm (user -> interact -> system -> feedback), the first is an interactive system of computers, nodes, which interact with each other to form a collaborative composition.


Drift (images above, video below), sometimes called Drifter, is a twelve monitor audio-visual installation. Each monitor is a node in a wireless network chain:

12 nodes, each with a computer, flatscreen and speakers, are placed in a circle. The nodes are connected over a wireless network, but each node only relate to its neighbour: It knows when a image is coming and knows where to pass it on to. Images travel clockwise across the network. The images leave traces. The image and traces are processed in realtime individually on each node and a sound is generated from the video, based on a given frequency. There are 4 base frequencies for the sound distributed among the different nodes, creating chords.

Below is a video explaining how the work functions.


The second work, this time entitled Node (images above, video below) is a slightly older interactive computer/video networked installation from 2001:

in the form of a metal well, node provides a meeting place in space and time by collecting faces and reflecting them back at the viewer : Visitors enter a dark room and discover the contour of a steel cylinder filled with waterm emitting sound and light. At the bottom of the well, they see abstract video sequences and live video of themselves blending in with faces of previous visitors.

Both of these works are produced with Nodio “a networked multichannel audiovisual system” built by the artist to develop work in installation and performance.

Drift originally seen at VVORK.

Posted by: Garrett @ 11:37 am
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