When you introduce smart surfaces into projects, it is possible to animate your work in ways that truly bring them to life. By allowing your audience not only to observe and listen but, touch, interact and manipulate an interactive installation, the experience becomes far more emotive. We are constantly amazed at the way people create engaging work with our technology and a great example of an interactive artwork that uses the audiences participation comes from one of our community members in Valencia.
Powehi + Frequency is an interactive installation presented by Vitamin at Volumens, an electronic technology festival where music and art come together. The festival is based in Valencia, Spain, featuring artists such as Murcof, Vessel, among others. At the festival's third edition, the venue changed from Valencia Center to the New Marina, a huge warehouse that was built for the America's Cup as the Allinghi's team shipyard. For this occasion it was transformed with different chill areas, stages and interactive exhibitions.
Vitamin, as headliner alongside other interactive artists and studios, presented an interactive installation that combined science, art, technology, music and an emotional experience.
Powehi, which means "the adorned fathomless dark creation" is the name given to the first black hole ever seen back in 2019 and is also the name given to this artistic installation. Vitamin always combines science and technology in the design of interactive experiences, in this case Powehi simulates the behaviour of a black hole and how it can act with the stars and other astral bodies nearby.
The first part was an interactive circle that allowed the viewer to interact with the lightning by moving the hand around the circle's interior. The sensing was made using Electric Paint and the Touch Board - utilising the 12 electrodes to drive different animation and sound.
The the centre piece consisted of 22 LED light tubes deployed around the space allowing visitors to walk around the interactive art and feel the energy near the them. This field of light tubes emulated the astral bodies around the black hole. When visitors were in contact with the interactive circle the light of the tubes strobed and changed, simulating how a black hole steals all the energy and light from nearby stars, in this case the audience could control the intensity, sound and velocity of the lightning.
The last section of the installation was a big black circle that represented the black hole. It had LED strips around the perimeter that interacted with the other parts of the installation and glowed when light and energy was stolen from the light tubes.
The Touch Board and Electric Paint was used to create the interactive object that controlled the installation. The 12 electrodes from the Touch Board controlled different groups of DMX tubes and managed their strobes. The light animations where programmed using TouchDesigner and then Vis Syphon to Madmapper for the DMX control through ArtNET.
Powehi + Frequency installation was also the main focus in Deeplomat and Dublatov's electronic concert presented at Volumens. The two electronic artists played an experimental set in the middle of the set and all the tubes were reactive to the music in real time. Different audio filters where programmed in order to play different clips and animations.
The interactive object allowed for people to interact with the music and lights during the concert.
Photos and Video by Vitamin
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