the summons (working Title)
This week I made progress on the narrative world of the summons, as well as the programming / state management, and some preliminary projection tests for its physical installation.
Initially I had planned on creating a touchless user interface (TUI) that could be used to uncover information about the wunderkammer I'm working on for my thesis. Instead I am framing the summons as its own experience, which is based off of the divinatory uses of the Mesoamerican obsidian mirror. In pre-Columbian times, mirrors were used as a means to peer into 'other' worlds and to connect with the god, Tezcatlipoca. Obsidian (iztli in Nahuatl) was known as 'the talking stone,' and one of the materials used to make mirrors. These mirrors were used by the Mexica to connect the material world to the ethereal, the mundane with the sacred. I will be adapting this practice for the summons, where I will have two forms of the mirror: a bowl filled with water and a vertical projection disk. The photo on the right is a quick sketch of what that looks like for the installation.
In terms of interaction, I will be using the leap motion sensor to navigate the audiovisual content that is projected on the 'mirrors'. I will be using distance from the sensor, with two hands, as my main mechanic (closeness to the sensor triggers one thing versus distance farther away triggers another.) I've added two pieces of geometry that will serve as indicators for where a participants' hands are in relation to the visuals.
For the narrative, I have decided to push on the perceived dichotomy between the material & the ethereal. I will be exploring this through the relationship between the water and the sky, namely where the sea met the sky. I have created a bank of words that represent that relationship: luminous, unknown, alive, ephemeral, material, etc. These words are selected from a list at random, and then overlaid on a video (that is also selected from a random list). A lovely screenshot below:
A poem is generated after each interaction based on the previous words used. The latest poem is:
A fun aside: I've also managed to get some audio integrated using QLab! It is triggered from Touch via OSC.