Latest New Media Art and Technology Installation
by New Media Artist Balam Soto
"Phobia": An Artistic Exploration of the Impact of Technology on Individuals
Phobia is an interactive, new media installation, conceptualized, developed and designed by artist Balam Soto. This work presents an analysis of the relationship between the individual and digital technologies. Whether or not we embrace technology, it is a permanent and important part of our daily existence - everyone uses it to some degree. Phobia reflects upon this at a personal level while providing indiviuals with an interctive and explorative opportunity.
The user interface is based on physical computing. The individual initiates the interaction with the installation through motion. The installation includes microcontroller Arduinos, sensors, Xbees, LEDs, servos, custom electronics and custom software developed with MaxMSP, Quartz Composer and Arduino IDE. The microcontroller arduino provides the heart of Phobia.
This installation is comprised of 2 - 3 units (40" x 12" x 20" - number dependant upon the space available in the exhibition location), placed upon pedestals and positioned according to the dictates of the space. Each unit consists of two large, plastic heads positioned upon a rectangular box of wood; each head contains a cubic configuration of LEDs.
The interactivity begins when a person moves near the installation and begins to investigate; when he/she reaches a specific location, the sensors detect this presence and:
~Two of the heads turn towards each other,
~The LED cube inside of each head lights up in preconfigured patterns,
~Audio initiates: Segments of interviews conducted with people from all walks of life, exploring individual reactions to and interactions with technology,
~Video projection initiates: a mix of excerpts from the interviews along with artistic images and video.
The interactivity continues below in a different vein through a series of short videos that Balam developed, aimed at sharing the knowledge. He documented the development of Phobia through video, photography and text. Using examples from the Phobia project in the video series, he begins to explain the use of microcontroller arduinos as an artistic tool.
"Art:duino: The Art of Arduinos" is here!