From technological research to sensual engineering

A review on the use of interactive media in performance

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Frieder Weiss, creator of the interactive media environment in Chunky Move’s Glow, will talk about his participation in and observations of the ‘dance tech’ genre over the last 15 years.

Weiss calls himself an ‘engineer in the arts’. In an entertaining yet critical review, he will describe developments and achievements in the genre of interactive performance, illustrated with numerous videos of works from the recent years. As he will show, not only has the technology changed in this time period, but also the very paradigms of using interactivity have shifted tremendously. Weiss will describe a recipe for successful interactive experiences, including brief overviews and demonstrations of software and hardware systems. Artistic implications will be addressed.

Weiss will also be giving an introductory workshop exploring artistic uses of video motion sensing technologies on Saturday December 5th. The workshop is FREE but limited to 15 participants and requires a reservation

Hélène Lesterlin

Frieder Weiss is an engineer in the arts and an expert for realtime computing and interactive computer systems in performance art. He is the author of EyeCon and Kalypso, video motion sensing programs especially designed for use with dance, music and computer art.

Weiss developed the video technologies and interactive stage projections for Chunky Move’s recent intermedia works Glow and Mortal Engine. For his contribution on Glow he was rewarded with a Green Room Award for Design in Dance.

Weiss teaches mediatechnology at the University of Applied Sciences in Nürnberg, Germany, and the University Centre in Doncaster, UK. In recent years he has collaborated in installation and performance projects with Phase-7 in Berlin, Leine und Roebana in Amsterdam, Helga Pogatschar, Cesc Gelabert in Munich, Chunky Move in Melbourne, Danish Dance Theater in Copenhagen. He maintains an ongoing collaboration with Australian dancer Emily Fernandez, with whom he has created a number of interactive performances and installations.

For Mortal Engine, the interactive floor projections were scaled up for a larger stage and numerous dancers. The key principle remains a tight, low latency interconnection with dancers’ movements. The graphical representations developed further into generative, particle swarm-based visual worlds. Graphics are based on a video tracking of performers’ body outlines in realtime, finally culminating in a laser projection of those outlines integrated into Robin Fox’s laser performance.

From technological research to sensual engineering
Studio 2
December 2, 2009, 7PM