Project — keith_lafuente @ 2:38 am

Processing + Max/MSP
Men become more naked the more you move (Motion detection in Max/MSP controls opacity in of images in processing).

Hopefully, in the future I will smooth out the changes in opacity, as well as get pictures of my own instead of the ones used in the demonstration.

Arduino thinks twitter is hot, no homo

Uncategorized — keith_lafuente @ 7:25 am

My Arduino project highlights the ridiculousness of the popular phrase “no homo”; a recognizable snippet of Beethoven’s ominous 5th symphony is played (via piezo buzzer) when the phrase is tweeted from anywhere in the world. A Processing application displays the most recent tweets.

Tweeting Ideas

Uncategorized — keith_lafuente @ 12:57 pm

1. Tweet the physical states of my body, like my body temperature or the speed at which I am moving, at constant intervals

2. Carry around an arduino with ethernet shield, push button to tweet every time I see someone hot

3. Tweet every time I smile

Looking Outwards – Keith Lafuente

LookingOutwards — keith_lafuente @ 10:42 pm

Sustained Coincidence  Rafael Lozano-Hemmer

A set of incandescent light bulbs light up in relation to the visitors in a gallery. The positions of the participants are recorded and the information is used to make sure that the visitor’s shadows from the light bulbs are always overlapping, no matter the visitor’s position in the room. This interesting piece allows viewers to modify their behavior in response to a simple consequence. I like this piece because it forces the user’s interaction with the piece and with other people also viewing the piece.


Time Travelers Toby Schachman

As the user goes closer and farther from the piece, the user travels back and forth in time. Initially a still image, the user’s silhouette changes the image in time. I like the idea of creating a kind of time machine, using technology to explore and control concepts of time. However, I think the concept could be pushed much farther than just an exploration of time. The images Schachman uses (a sunset, decaying strawberries, jellyfish, atomic bomb) are too stereotypical, generalized, and kitschy, making the piece much less interesting than it could have been. Schachman has a whole word of problems and issues he could engage with, and he chose a sunset?


Auto Rosary – Chris Eckert

A pretty self-explanatory piece; a user engages the machine, which then proceeds to pray the rosary for you, so that you don’t have to do it yourself. I think its a simple yet poignant piece that explores some of the very basic rituals of the Catholic religion. Meant to be a very personal and devotional activity, the rosary is undermined as it becomes automated by a machine. But is this machine any more automated than an actual person repeating the same prayers over and over again?

Keith Lafuente – Arduino 1

Uncategorized — keith_lafuente @ 9:45 pm

Arduino controlled Processing application, with interactive potentiometer and light sensor. Potentiometer controls levitation of rock, while the light sensor activates the fluorescent mineral.

Looking Outwards 4

LookingOutwards — keith_lafuente @ 12:07 am

Murmur Study Christopher Baker

This installation explores the phenomenon of micro-blogging. The piece collects tweets and Facebook updates in real-time and continuously prints them out, creating an accumulated pile of the short messages people thought interesting enough to share on the internet. Using Processing and Arduino-controlled printers, Murmur Study is an elegant and physical reminder of the massive amount of information available on the web, while simultaneously exposing the narcissistic and social nature of humans. The piece is simple yet very effective. I think Baker could take if farther, for example by printing out every single Facebook status and tweets from all over the world, having printers on every wall of the room, and letting the paper flood the entire room.


Virtual GravitySilke Hilsing

In this interactive piece, Silke Hilsing tries to determine the physical weight of electronic data. This weight is not determined by the amount of data or literally what the actual data weighs, but is instead determined by its calculated importance. Weight is correlated to internet presence: how much the word is searched on search engines, etc… Hilsing created a sort of electronic balance, where participants can select different words and see which one is heavier (i.e. is more socially relevant). While the concept is really interesting, I feel like its execution is not quite up to par. I feel like the reaction it provides isn’t quite visceral enough, maybe because the medium itself still feels too electronic and Hilsing hasn’t quite fully translated the data into a more tangible, physical format.


Quintetto Quiet Ensemble

A series of five tanks, each with a goldfish, emits sounds that are correlated to the position of the fish in the tank. This simple  artwork is an engaging doorway into a different mode of perception. An interesting aspect of the piece is the mix of nature and technology, where organic bodies and electronic bodies collaborate unconciously. I like how the technology was used as a medium to further explore a relatively mundane, natural occurrence and elevates it to an artwork.

Looking Outwards 3 – Keith Lafuente

LookingOutwards — keith_lafuente @ 2:54 am

Introspectre, Octocoupler, Dromolux – Ludwig Zeller

These projects provide technological solutions to human enhancement in the future. Introspectre is a machine that transmits, through sound, brain activity, allowing the user more insight on his or her cognitive processes. The Dromolux, when combined with specific medication, is used to help patients with dementia (or just the general population) train their brains to function at an increased level. The Octocoupler is a “depressant” that is completely electronic, aiming to relax the user just as other consumable depressants do. These projects are interesting in the way they experiment with theexplore the possibilities of technological and human cognitive interaction.


Necomimi Neurowear

Necomimi by Neurowear is an electronic appendage that, through an EEG, reads the user’s brainwaves and communicates emotion through the movement of plushy cat ears. This prosthetic is a surprising and amusing way to engage both technology and pop culture. I am interested in this project because it brings up questions about the future possibilities of the intersection between technology and fashion, as well as the possible impact of technology on human communication. I do have a few qualms – its too cutesy, and can people really understand these apparatuses?


What it is Without the Hand that Wields it Riley Harmon

This is a kinetic sculpture that is connected to the first-person shooter game Counter-Strike. Every time a character is killed in the game, the sculpture spurts a squirt of fake blood. In a culture brimming with violence, both simulated and actual, this piece is a relevant and engaging piece that deals with how violence is portrayed in our society. It acts as a tangible, physical reminder to the sort of accepted, yet secretly perverse, actions that have become common in gamer culture. I only wish that the fake blood was real blood.

Looking Outwards 2 – Keith Lafuente

LookingOutwards — keith_lafuente @ 4:14 am

Teleklettergarten – Bitnik and FOK

This performance took place on a humongous keyboard installed on the side of the art university in Linz, Austria. The keyboard doubled as a climbing wall, and climbers doubled as computer programmers. Over the course of a week, climbers collaboratively “typed” codes and scripts. I think the contradiction of doing something so fundamentally digital in such a physically challenging and analog way makes for a very interesting perspective on computer programming, transforming the very action of programming into a definitive art piece. However, I think the artists’ main message, which was a statement against patents for basic software, was somewhat lost and personally less interesting than the rest of the piece.


Jeff Koons Must Die!!! – Huner Jonakin

“Jeff Koons Must Die!!!” is an arcade-style video game set in a Jeff Koons exhibition. Armed with a missile launcher, the player (you) has the choice to either enjoy or obliterate Koons’ artwork. If you choose the more destructive route, then Jeff Koons himself confronts you and sends guards to kill you. If you survive the guards, then you are plagued by curators, lawyers, and gallerists until you are dead. This game is a humorous commentary on the art market, the museum system, the commercialization of art, and Koons’ undue praise. I particularly like this piece because of its accessibility; it allows someone to take something as sacred and untouchable as an expensive work of art and be able to personally engage with it.


Kiss Transmission Device -Nobuhiro Takahashi

Kiss Transmission Device

“Send a kiss over the internet with the kiss transmission device” Although not technically an art piece, I still find it to be an incredibly interesting piece of technology. Using a strange gadget connected to a computer, one can supposedly send a kiss by stimulating a bendy-straw-looking-type-thing, whose movement is replicated in another gadget belonging to the person being kissed. This is interesting because it really makes one question how far technology can go and how deeply integrated into human life it can possibly become, even replacing very human acts like kissing. What sort of problems will arise if machines start realistically imitating human behavior?

Another question that comes up is if this particular machine actually feels like kissing, or if it just feels like a straw spinning in your mouth.

Looking Outwards – Keith Lafuente

LookingOutwards — Tags: — keith_lafuente @ 3:54 am

My Little Piece of Privacy – Niklas Roy

Niklas Roy wants more privacy. His studio has a large window that faces the street. As a solution, Roy took a very small curtain and combined it with a mechanical system that is programmed to move the curtain according to the position of a passerby. Using a camera that detects motion, Roy’s program tells the curtain where to go in order to precisely and effectively block the view of an onlooker into the studio. Contrary to its purpose, the installation amusingly attracts more attention than it avoids. Roy uses a simple premise to successfully transform public space into an unexpected and unusual experience.


Captured: An Homage to Light and Air Nils and Sven Völker at MADE space, Berlin

An installation that resulted from the collaboration between artist, graphic designer, and arduino attempts to pay homage to the light and to the air. Silver air bags are choreographed (through the use of processing and an arduino) to inflate and deflate, along with music and changing colored lights. Prints line the walls, declaring vague statements like “The Border” and “The Volume”.

I enjoy the air bags particularly, which have their own mysterious and uncanny beauty as they inflate and deflate in a strangely organic way. It is almost as if they are breathing, which seems contradictory to their artificial appearance. The sounds of the bag’s movements also adds another satisfying level to the sensory experience. On the other hand, the flashing lights were a little hokey and lend themselves more to a dance club than this particular installation. The prints on the wall also seem very disconnected from the air bag component; even the gallery introduces the project as when artist and graphic designer “clash”. I believe the piece would be a lot more interesting if the artist had concentrated and expanded on the use of the air bags instead of the lights or the prints.


People Staring at Computers – Kyle McDonald

People Staring at Computers is a program McDonald wrote and installed on various computers in Apple stores around New York City. The program took a picture every minute, and if it detected a face, the photo would be sent to McDonald’s server. The result was thousands of faces; truthful, unmediated, and surprisingly fascinating portraits of consumers and their relationship with technology. These portraits were ‘exhibited’ on the same computers that took the pictures.

The project would have continued to be interesting had it not been shut down by the secret service. The website has been taken down and the pictures have been censored with pictures of Steve Jobs. Kyle McDonald is now in serious trouble over this project, which obviously stirred up issues dealing with privacy rights. He could be sent to jail for twenty years for computer fraud. The strong reaction to the piece, though, makes it all the more interesting.


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