The work bears the name of a mathematical algorithm discovered inadvertently by Google. The mathematical algorhythm proceeds by visual associations, capturing images and videos from Google’s database, a neural network that interprets reality through a shared and constantly evolving archive of images.
Deep Dream Act II is the second part of a research project, which aims to place the human being within the data stream that they themselves produce and share. The viewer "travels" in a continuous stream of data within an n-dimensional 'hypercube' composed of 150 square meters of mirrors in which one completely loses all reference to space-time. The visual and noise bombardment that the system generates inside the hypercube is thus a reflection of our virtual affairs.
Deep Dream Act II takes its cue from the concept of cyberspace, giving life to this utopian conceptual space. The types of data traveling through the 'hypercube' are images, videos and GIFs that are collected in the Facebook database "DeepDream_Open Archive".
For this purpose NONE created a public group to start a visual survey developed around the issues that shape the voyeurism of the social media platform. The interaction between the user and the artwork begins even before the work is installed as the same users' posts are used to create it.
Starting the journey in this stream of collective consciousness the viewer is invited to enter their own Facebook profile to the mobile, enabling artists to access their profile image and "catch 10" only for the time the experience lasts.
Andrew Quinn created the visual content with TouchDesigner on site at MACRO in Rome with the NONE team, Gregorio de Luca Comandini, Mauro Pace and Saverio Villirillo.
A prototype was functional by the end of the second day. Two days remained for final decision of content, Kinect calibration and general fine tuning.
Prototyping was done with sliders and buttons in TouchDesigner, triggering animation cues and controlling thresholds to spectral analysis, shift speeds, and resolution of instancing and texture of the Facebook images. In the final stage, the animation curves and cues were reproduced in Ableton and sent via OSC to TouchDesigner.
Before entering, users are invited to use an app written by Simone Donadini, creative coder at NONE, to send their Facebook images to be grabbed by TouchDesigner for each repetition of the 5 minute cycle.
Users interact in the space, deforming the projected image via four Kinect 2 devices concealed in the ceiling. The audioscape was made in Abelton Live by Gregorio de Luca Comandini, collaborating with Luca Spagnoletti of the Rome Conservatorium of Music.
NONE is an art collective based in Rome that operates on the border between art, design and technological research, founded by Gregorio De Luca Comandini, Mauro Pace and SaverioVillirillo. NONE creates experiences that investigate the human dimension, machines that explore physical space, the process of events and the unconscious mind. Technology just happens to be the way in which NONE creates sensitive, interactive surroundings; the visitor is an active part of the installation and contributes to the narration.
See Deep Dream Act ll from 7 October to 27 November at The Pelanda - Macro Testaccio in the context of the XXXI edition of Romaeuropa Festival.
Photo Credit: Cristina Vatielli