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FaceTime Squandering for Beautiful Eyes


Squandering for Beautiful Eyes is an interactive moving image, the five fans in the screen will rotate more and more fast as viewers close it. It is build using OpenFrameworks and Arduino with ultrasonic sensor.

Keywords: Symbolization, Dynamic environment

produced by: Baqi Ba

Concept and background research

In this set of the interactive moving images Squandering for Beautiful Eyes, the acceleration of the rotation of the image as the person approaches the fan image can be understood as an attitude towards the current environment -the authorities are obsessed.  The development of science and technology enables people to enjoy the convenience brought by high efficiency and bring a pleasant experience. At the same time, the confusing eyes make people unable to see the essence of things. It is like the early spring of wildflowers, which is open to the public, full of vitality and makes people fascinated but different forms make people dazzled. No one can judge whether it is better to be far away to stay awake, or to be closer to the beautiful illusion it brings, it depends on their own attitudes.

Squandering for Beautiful Eyes includes installations, photographs, and interactive moving images three parts. The interactive moving images are developed from the photographs which took the series of installations made from lots of images with symbol properties. As time goes on, symbol meaning will show its complexity. The artist collected a large number of images with symbolic attributes that are common in daily life, and rearranged them according to their usefulness on the fan blades of the electric fan. When these fans are energized, the originally still symbolic image attached to the fan blade is transformed into an abstractly digital trace. The artist hopes that the symbolic objects or events will be presented in the development of contemporary people's psychological uncertainty and emptiness in this rude way.

However, in the long historical timeline, the source of these digital traces has long been lost. A static symbol image is physically just an image. What is an object before it is converted into a symbol image? Why is this object still there? How many traces of a current object on the historical timeline?

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Details of symbolised images on fans






This project was built using OpenFrameworks and Arduino with an ultrasonic sensor. I initially used depth camera Kinect to sense the distance between viewers and screen, but failed. It worked well when image from Kinect appeared in program, but after I cut the image, only use depth data from Kinect it didn’t work. Min and max threshold cannot mapped to rotating angle of fans.

After I changed into using Arduino, I started from serialExample, letting Arduino send a signal to oF. To be more simple, I cut the signal sending from oF to Arduino. Also stupidly cut the frequency of byte data reading from Arduino in oF, which led to a delayed message reading. So the interaction looks unstable sometimes, especially when the laptop has run for a long time.



Future development

There's a lot more development I could do to this work. To make it be more stable, the frequency of byte data read need to be added back into oF firstly. Also I want to try to put the group of images into space to make one more layer transferred relation between different medias, like using five light boxes to present it, each sensor for each box, add some wind and sound sensed through sensors.

For further projects, there is a big possibility that film and moving image would be my focus. That the reason why I tried to use kinect in this project, although I didn’t need images from kinect. Just wanted to do some more experiment. Comparing with the the technical developing deeply, I am much more interested in using basic technology to mix other medias, like looking for kind of chemical effect between them. So I will do more practice between film and computational things in this summer, maybe will related to some live things. Also after the last two-term study, I felt that computational style arts are quite different from traditionally conceptual arts in some aspect, I am looking for a balance between them through reading texts and doing more practice as well.



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Sketch for further development of this project