FutureEverything was featured on Iranian television channel Manoto TV‘s Tech Show this week. There’s a feature on the Ant Ballet about halfway through. My Persian isn’t too hot, but I think the translation came across OK…
Ant Ballet was featured on the BBC News website this morning. The segment shows a brief overview of the project, along with a guided tour of the installation at FutureEverything in MOSI‘s 1830 Warehouse, Manchester.
You can watch the article here.
I know not everyone can make it to Manchester for FutureEverything, so took a couple of panoramic photosynths so that everyone can join in the fun. The exhibition is in the world’s first railway warehouse, so it’s a nice contrast between the peak of 1830’s physical technology and 2012’s (mostly) virtual!
First up is the elevator that takes people from the ground floor to the exhibition:
It’s been designed by Jörn Röder and Jonathan Pimay. Called fbFaces, it is the result of a script that trawled the web for public photos of people from and related to Manchester. There’s something of a Philip K Dick novel/Keiichi Matsuda experience in being surrounded by so many little avatars…
Secondly, here’s my Ant Ballet installation:
It has four screens showing documentary footage and theory about Ant Ballet, and a floating circular screen in the middle of the space with a robotic arm and simulation of ant trail following and disruption.
On the other side of the room is Brendan Oliver and Kasia Molga‘s The…. Based around David Bohm‘s philosophy that no human thought can be original, but rather a result of other thoughts in the world, it presents visitors with poetic (and non-Justin Bieber-related) Twitter feeds that are sent from one viewers’ shadow to another.
Unfortunately I didn’t have exhibition features numerous other works by artists such as Lawrence Epps, Jeremy Hutchison, Daniel Jones + James Bulley and more. It is open from the 18th May – 10th June at the Museum of Science and Industry
Sad to hear about the passing of Adam Yaunch a couple of days ago. The Beastie Boys are the soundtrack to much of machine-building – here’s a video from the construction of the Ant Ballet machine last year:
This is the cheapest insurance policy you can get to cover losing an iPhone, at 54p! Its reliability is yet to be tested fully. Get in there quick before the cost of stamps goes up again.
The BUGS house
The installation is aptly in the BUGS house – celebrating the diversity of invertebrate life. The building itself is modelled after a termite nest, using a passive ventilation system to regulate the interior temperature and airflow.
The installation is in near to the leafcutter ants, locusts, and cockroaches, in an ‘exclusion zone’ tent.
The installation is going to be there until the 11th of May, so head on down to the zoo if you want to find out more!
I helped my good friend Heechan Park shoot a couple of short videos about the amazing machines he built at the Bartlett last year.
Inspired by JG Ballard’s The Cloud Sculptures of Choral D, they fire vortices of smoke, infused with scents, distances of up to 20m. Viewers experience an ephemeral sensation – bewildering bursts of smell defining their interaction with a space.
Here’s the first testing of the machines near Old Street. There’s a lovely contrast between the rugged, heavy-duty appearance of the machines and the poetically delicate smoke vortex they create.
For more information, head to www.heecpark.com
I’ll be talking about ants, machines and ballet at dorkbot 79 next week.
19:00-21:00, 28 March 2012
MAT Lab, Room G2 Engineering Building, Queen Mary, University of London, 327 Mile End Road, London E1 4NS
Nearest tube: Stepney Green / Mile End
Walk up or down Mile End Road until you’re between Bancroft Road and The Queen’s Building. There’s a glass storefront with orange benches and people milling about looking studious. That’s the entrance. There should be a ‘dorkbot’ sign there.
- – Transphormetic – Paul Prudence
- – the art of passionate following – Jag
- – “P-bROCK” Digital Bagpipes and Ukulele Hero – Duncan Menzies
- – Ant Ballet – Ollie Palmer
See you there!
My Ant Ballet installation is featured in FutureEverything‘s art show this summer, from the 16 May to the 10 June 2012.
The festival was recently listed among the top 10 ideas festivals, scattered in a plethora of interesting venues around Manchester. My installation is be in the world’s first railway warehouse building in the Museum of Science and Industry – a showcase of the future, from a building that built Britain’s past.
Entry to the art exhibition is free! Visit FutureEverything’s site for details.
The exhibition at FutureEverything has been gaining a lot of press recently – see the Press page for more.