HEXI // THIBAUT SID
Hexi by Thibaut Sld is a responsive wall system that utilizes sensory input from a depth camera and outputs to an array of wall mounted servos. The wall responds to various human behaviors by moving each individual panel in the array. The panels are coordinated in such a way that a fluid rippling effect is exhibited by the wall. The fabrication for this installation is quite streamlined and clean. Everything from the panel’s polished appearance, to the tremendously accurate tolerance of the servo hardware creates an extremely fluid execution. Although the interaction between people and the installations very playful and energetic, I think this specific installation would be a very compelling way to display information of some kind. The object and it’s interaction appears to exist in it’s own vacuum of space, and could possibly benefit from reaching out further into the world. The exact sources of inspiration for this project are difficult to track down, however upon close examination pieces like Tessel and Versus from David Lettelier come to mind. Both use similar interaction typologies coupled with very smooth mechanical action to create engaging experiences.
BREAKING THE SURFACE // BJORN GUNNAR STAAL (SCANDINAVIAN DESIGN GROUP)
Breaking the surface by Bjørn Gunnar Staal is an interactive installation that uses a large array of suspended acrylic tubing to create an implied dynamic surface. The surface directly responds to inhabitants below it. The actuation system uses a combination of motors, wheels and a depth camera. This installation is impressive in the level of immersion it can reach with a participant. Once in the center of the installation, outward views are easily compromised. The data processing ability and general agility of the installation is very impressive as well. It sits as a very complete and visually impactful piece, however I think the nature of the actuated tubes was a bit of a missed opportunity. The combination of some more advanced geometry coupled with dynamic lighting could have made the piece a lot more engaging. The lineage of Staal’s pieces are very interesting in that they seem to stand out from many other artists that perform at an environmental scale. The open frameworks apps that was written serves as both a simulation tool through the design process, as well as the controlling software for the physical installation. To me this a fairly new idea and would love to track down more examples like it. The thematic interaction typology is very similar to other projects performed by Staal and Scandinavian Design Group, although it’s very unique in its very aggressive kinetics.