• ckarpodini

Post 15. Curating a project: Horniman X Goldsmiths

Updated: Apr 1, 2019

A very important aspect when you are studying an art is to test it in the real world, to see how your knowledge and your skills applied to the professional environment.

Even if Universities exhibitions look challenging enough to be curated and organised and set up, still you are in someway in a protected environment. But the real challenge is in a situation outside university. To be honest… we live for that.

I am really happy I made this decision to join an incredible team of colleagues in a proposal for the Horniman X Goldsmiths event. That is because our proposal got chosen and we had this amazing opportunity to participate in this spectacular night full of astonishing digital art.

The Horniman X Goldsmiths was a evening event at the Horniman museum in London, that took place on the 21st of March. It accommodated computational art projects mainly interactive but also performances. Along a great collection of projects ours, with the name Overcurrents which was dedicated to ecological crises and in particular the plastic concentration in the oceans.

For this project I collaborated with Hazel Ryan, Julian Burgess and Romain Biros.

We created three installations for the space of the aquarium.

Interactive Installation

Our interactive installation was a mimesis of the jellyfish tank that was on the same room. Julian worked on the design of the jellyfish and Romain on the interaction with the use of the Kinect camera. Both computational procedures have been made in OpenFrameworks. I, on the other hand, used Max/Msp creating an interactive soundscape with the use of pre-recorded sounds/samples of plastic. The interactive idea was that the movement of the visitors would activate bubbles in the screen and therefor bubbles sound (the communication between oF and Max made with the use of OSC communication system). However, in the end, we decided to use instead of bubbles, images of plastic bottles acting on the same motive by making our installation in this way more immersive and direct to it’s message.

Projection on a map

This installation was a projection of the plastic concentration on various places of our oceans in a world map. Hazel and I made a visual representation of these plastic concentrations and we project them on a world map with the use of openFrameworks and ofxPiMapper. This installation was meant to be accompanied by a soundscape composition that I made. Unfortunately we didn’t had enough time to check the sound on time and we realised that there was a problem on the connection of the speakers and the sound could not be played any louder than a very low volume that wasn’t enough for the space. Therefor we had to leave it as it was.

Plastic display

The third installation was a display of plastics inside jars and various other plastics scattered around the room. This display was meant to enhance the sense of the present of the plastic in the sea life. Among those wastes we displayed a trolley and plastics that have been collected from the coast of Themes .

Curating a project

Participating in such an event is a great experience that tough us a lot about how to organise and curate an exhibition. Curating is an aspect that every artist should acknowledge in order to be able to collaborate smoothly and successfully with the curators and organisation team of each exhibition space.

From the equipment management to the set up, each part of this process appears to be more challenging than the actual creation of the art piece. The most challenging part was the set up on the day of the exhibition as we only had one hour, so we had to set up two projectors and two pairs of speakers along with the placement of the plastic in the space. Unfortunately, one hour is not enough time and we didn’t have the time to check everything ( as I mentioned on the map installation above). However that is why we loved that we participate on the exhibition because among other things we learn so much about the preparation and whole process.

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