May 18, 2011

humanaquarium at CHI 2011

I had the opportunity to attend the presentation session of humanaquarium: Exploring audience, participation, and interaction at CHI 2011, and also experience humanaquarium's compelling interactive performance along with a crowd of CHI 2011 attendees. It was one of my favorite events.

What I liked about humanaquarium is that it is a good example of how music, the arts, and technology are converging, on many levels.  It is encouraging to know that this sort of interdisciplinary, creative collaboration is evident at a number of university research centers. humanaquarium was developed with the support of Culture Lab, Newcastle University (UK),  the Advanced Man-Machine Interface Laboratory, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada, and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts.

According to the abstract for the CHI 2011 paper, "humanaquarium is a movable performance space designed to explore the dialogical relationship between artist and audience. Two musicians perform inside the cube-shaped box, collaborating with participants to co-create an aesthetic audio-visual experience. The front wall of the humanaquarium is a touch-sensitive FTIR window. MaxMSP is used to translate the locations of touches on the window into control data, manipulating the tracking of software synthesizers and audio effects generated in Ableton Live, and influencing a Jitter visualization projected upon the rear wall of the cube."

To learn more about humanaquarium and catch a glimpse of the performance, take a look at the following video clips.  The first video clip was produced by Nick Barber, who was covering the CHI 2011 conference for IDG News Services. (Nick is also the host and co-producer of World Tech Update.)  I produced the second video clip.

humaniquarium:  Robyn Taylor/Guy Schofield/John Shearer

humanaquarium: exploring audience, participation, and interaction
CHI EA '11 Proceedings of the 2011 annual conference extended abstracts on Human  Factors in Computing Systems
CHI 2011 The User in Flux
humanaquarium YouTube channel
Humanaquarium blends art and tech, attracts crowds
Nick Barber, Computerworld, 5/13/11
Humanaquarium: Two musicians, one box
Nate Lanxon, Wired, 3/16/10


Robyn said...

Thanks for this, and thanks for enjoying our show. I love the videos ... CHI 2011 was great fun!

Lynn Marentette said...

I look forward to sharing more about humanaquarium in the future!