interactive art piece (part 2)

I mentioned on Wednesday that I was planning to get build a piece of interactive art for next year’s Southbank Bristol Arts Trail. I think I ought to flesh out a bit of what I had in mind, even though it’s not yet fully set in stone and I’m not altogether sure what exact form that might take. OK.

Last year (earlier this year actually) I did something with a group of local Flickr photographers. They went around the Arts Trail taking pictures with digital camera’s and then uploaded it to a Flickr Group dedicated to the Arts Trail. My plan was to then show these pictures on two main screens, one located in the Southville Centre,

and the other located in the Tobacco Factory.

The pictures would loop through, using a flash based slideshow viewer, the entire set on the Flickr group. The same show would be available for anybody to see from the SBA website. The final part of the plan was to the public to upload pictures from digital cameras or phones to a sister Flickr site that would be moderated and also fed into the slideshow. It would act as a continually updated documentary on the weekend’s events.

The reason it didnt get as far as they display screens bit was down to pure bad planning on the logistics side. That is to say it was my fault. A laptop failed a week or so before the event, and a replacement couldn’t be found. The screens were OK, the WiFi connections were there, it was just the KEY bit of the display hardware was missing. So that bit, the best bit, didnt happen.

Well next year I want to try again. Maybe the photographers will be interested in taking part, maybe we will have to think of a different method of accepting pictures, perhaps via a link to a Gmail account. I want to get it publicised earlier this time, so the public has more chance of finding out about it and taking part. But this time I want to make it even more interactive, with some mechanism for people in one of the bigger gallery spaces on the trail to be able to browse the pictures, or use the images to create further images or pieces of art. I see Squeak as a possible mechanism for allowing this to happen, although there are many ways of doing this. Open Croquet is such a method, although Second Life may be another means of acheiving the same thing.

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