Infested Area

Interactive installation

Infestedarea_splash_4

An exploration of bugs in the analog/digital borderland.

DEADLINE: AUG 2009  |  EXHIBITED BY: THE ART MUSEUM OF WEST ZEALAND  |  SPONSORS: THE DANISH ART COUNSIL'S COMMITTEE FOR VISUAL ARTS

A species of virtual bugs have crept into The Art Museum of West Zealand, perhaps through the electrical grid. They have infested an old stairway that lead to the exhibition space, forcing visitors to walk through their territory. They are scared away easily and will flee into the nearest power socket when they feel vibrations in the floor.

Our physical and virtual spaces are in a merging phase. Today, screens in our homes and pockets serve as digital ponds for our virtual life. Much like the Darwinian evolution of sea creatures, virtual instances struggle in a competition to inhabit our physical space and engage in a full symbioses with us. As the border between physical and virtual begin to blur, the notion of software bugs become comparable to that of house bugs – most people won't know how to fight them.

Technical notes

The project involved writing 3D projection mapping software from scratch which allowed the bugs to know the topology of the space they lived in. The bugs were procedurally generated and simulated in Unity and beamed through three video projectors. The stairway was replicated as a virtual 3D model in Modo. Two knock sensors (piezo microphones) attached to the floor acted as sonsory input for the bugs.

Thanks

Daniel Øhrgaard, for helping me setting up and calibrating the projectors. Leona Sui-Ling Hwang , for helping with soldering circuits, keeping me sane and making me smile.