A China of Many Senses - TASIE Beijing
The China Science and Technology Museum, Beijing, China
Third Art and Science International Exhibition
Bill Seaman, artist (initial concept, text and time-based media) with Todd Berreth, designer and programmer (design, creative coding and system engineering). Worked on while in Bill Seaman’s studio @ Duke University.
“A China of Many Senses”, an art piece by Bill Seaman, was selected to be a featured installation in the 3rd Art and Science International Exhibition, held in the China Museum of Science and Technology in Beijing, the entire month of November, 2012.
Todd Berreth gave a keynote presentation at the symposium forum on November 2nd, titled “Cathedrals in Our Midst: How can we live with our media, and what can it reveal to us?” and was interviewed in the China Professional Lighting Design journal, issue 9/10 2012.
This work was documented in the published monograph, “A Works Collection of the 3rd Art and Science International Exhibition”, China Architecture and Building Press, 2012.
The piece is driven by a software engine, written in C++ and OpenGL using the openFrameworks libraries. In real-time, it recombinately composes a library of disparate elements, video and image content, spoken-word phrases, 3d models and musical passages, into an evocative dynamic collage, media landscape and hyper-constructed assemblage. A China of Many Senses specifically juxtaposes imagery from China’s past and present, highlighting the tension of a country rapidly becoming the world’s industrial powerhouse, while coexistently maintaining many of its ancient modes of existence. It frames, orders and builds with these materials, using a vocabulary and grammar of designed behaviors and construction typologies, diagramming and displaying the permutations with standard modes of architectural representation. The effect is to create a projected virtual space with a dizzying sense of logic, scale and balance – an imagined organic and built landscape at once both regimentally ordered and colossally haphazard, filled with both epic and intimate construction and permeated with history.
A China of Many Senses explores the aesthetic potential of utilizing standard architectural visualization techniques and an algorithmically modulated, database-driven virtual environment to create a dynamic poetic space, which may provide suggestive and often unexpected insights into an incredibly relevant and interesting contemporary condition.