Thoughts of Rome — 2014
Generative 360° realtime audiovisual installation & WebGL interweb experience
The fine people from Postmatter London approached A N F in the spring of 2k14 to create a bespoke installation for Diesel, purveyors of lustrous Italian denim, timed for the freshly opened flagship store at Piazzi di Spagna in Rome. Luckily, the talented Mr Pazos, who had collaborated with me on the SuperRatings project came on board early on developing the concept and 3d framework in Processing. More good fortune was upon the project, because composer & musical mastermind Nikolai von Sallwitz was available to do the generative score for the piece.
The final installation software was then ported to 3js for the online version.
The official Press release:
On the occasion of its latest flagship store opening in Rome, Diesel has paid homage to the city with an unprecedented art experience, an exclusive screen-based artwork created in partnership with POSTmatter magazine. Drawing together a creative and forward-looking vision, this collaboration showcases exciting possibilities in digital art.
The choice of the Berlin based artist Andreas Nicolas Fischer made possible to bring to life an abstract digital organism, housing it in an enclosed atrium that will serve as the gateway into the store. With all walls completely tiled with screens, and a mirrored ceiling, the space will envelop its audience and involve them to “feed” the interactive art piece. Based upon localised data sources drawn directly from Rome, the flux and evolution of the city will be brought into the space through Fischer’s striking, animated visuals.
Rome and its powerful role in shaping art history as we know it are central to the new commission. Diesel store is located in the heart of the city – next to the Spanish Steps, and this installation unites the surrounding landscape and its equivalent digital space into a pulsating heart of information.
The digital organism will be first drawn from topographical data, taken from maps of Rome. Its growth and movements will be based upon the use of #rome and #roma online. Evolving into new visual outcomes, the city’s data will create a starting point from which Fischer’s beautiful, impressionistic forms can grow. Expanding upon the immersive and responsive nature of the in-store installation, the shape-shifting organism will also be accessible for participants around the world through social networks. Each time the hashtag ‘#POSTroma’ is used on Twitter, a unique response will be tweeted back to each individual user. A specially programmed algorithm created by Fischer will generate a haiku poem and a striking screenshot of the in-store visual mutation at that moment, both of which will be delivered directly to the Twitter account of the original user. Diesel has been consistently promoting and supporting creativity in all its forms, with a special focus on independent artists that capture their drive towards a bold future. Leading the way, the POSTroma project is at the forefront of a new age of boundary crossing creative participation.