Project brief

Description
In this project you will work site-specifically and investigate how to combine environments and motion with media and digital technologies to create an augmented environment (live event, installation).

You will design a sensorial experience (emotion) by working closely with the environment (site) and motion (proprioception). Your project has to be inclusive / accessible and invite people to take part, to participate.

The technologies you use to produce and present your work may include sensors, projectors, 3D cameras / displays, binaural / ambisonic microphones, 3D printers, head mounts, headphones, range of speakers, mobile phones, etc., it really is up to you!!

Context
Every day we encounter media, digital gadgets and information technologies. Yet these technologies are mostly used to speed up our lives and communications with others, to make travelling, shopping or finding services  more convenient (bus tracking, QR codes, GPS), or to provide information about a particular object or site (museum’s interactive displays, location tracking, online reviews). What if we used them to slow us down and reconsider the way we move and interact with others in the environments we inhabit? How would this affect our emotions and the sensorial experiences we have in these environments?

With this in mind you might also want to ask yourselves: how can we create environments in which people can get immersed? What elements can we use to augment sensorial experiences in our surroundings? How can we use digital technologies and media content to change people’s perceptual experiences?

Students should have a strong interest in working site-specifically. In this case, the site is the Sculpture Court, located in Lauriston Place (ECA main building). There you will have to listen, move, smell, touch and observe the site, and from these experiences then devise the project.

The biggest challenge of developing site-specific media works / interventions / installations is that the work cannot simply be added to the site, it has to emerge from it. The site inspires the work and is an essential element of the project.

Your work will have to merge with the site and offer a perceptual experience that would normally not be there. The immersive experience that you will design can focus on sonic, haptic, olfactory, visual and/or proprioceptive perception.

Ground floor plan, Edinburgh College of Art, Lauriston Place building. Red rectangle highlights the Sculpture Court. Image reproduced with permission of © RCAHMS (Peddie and MacKay, 1907) canmore.org.uk/collection/1014206.%5B/caption%5D

Aims and Objectives
As part of this project, you will:

  • Explore the creative potential of media and digital technologies
  • Analyse the environment and its relationship with motion and media
  • Design an augmented environment (merging of physical & virtual)
  • Produce a live event / installation that changes perception of the site

Learning outcomes
Project participants will:

  • Acquire conceptual / technical skills to create augmented environments
  • Gain understanding of perception to design augmented environments
  • Create media content that integrates with and enhances the site
  • Take initiative and responsibility for individual and group tasks

Practical outcomes

  • An augmented environment (live event, installation).
  • Blog posts, comments and gathered resources (research undertaken)
  • Documentation: presentation, design / development process

Bibliography

  • Stephen Wilson. 2002. Information Arts. MIT Press.
  • Andy Clark. 2009. ‘Perception, action, and experience’ in Neuropsychologia, 47(6), pp. 1460-1468, doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2008.10.020
  • Yvonne Spielmann. 2013. Hybrid culture. MIT Press.
  • Margot Lovejoy et al. 2011. Context providers. Intellect.

Other resources