Examples of work by ManifestAR members in museums and galleries worldwide, both invited and as guerrilla intervention.
Museum of Modern Art, New York
In 2010, Mark Skwarek had been invited to participate in New York’s Conflux Festival. In preparing his proposal, he began to imagine mounting an exhibition of augmented reality art in the Museum of Modern Art without asking permission. As he was conducting some preliminary research, he came across an image of a fictitious sign from inside MoMA that Veenhof had posted on the Internet, which read “No augmented reality beyond this point.” Skwarek contacted Veenhof and a plan for the first augmented reality intervention was hatched, “We AR in MoMA.”
No augmented reality beyond this point, photomontage by Sander Veenhof, 2010.
Gradually Melt the Sky, Devotion Gallery, Brooklyn
The title of this exhibition took its cue from the 1964 artwork-poem “Tunafish Sandwich” by Yoko Ono. The text imagines a performance event which is at once cosmic and mundane, an action painting and a protest. The artworks in this exhibition employed a recent developing technology dubbed “augmented reality” to overlay, intervene and challenge the physical world in much the same conjectural spirit as preceding Fluxus and Conceptual works.
Mark Skwarek views work in Gradually Melt the Sky at Devotion Gallery, Brooklyn, 2011.
The 52 Card Cinema project, by Geoffrey Alan Rhodes, is an exemplar of the unique architecture of cinematic pieces mapped on to the real world, made possible by AR technology. 52 cards, each printed with a unique identifier, are replaced in the subject's view by the individual shots that make up a movie scene or genre. The privileged linearity of the screen gives way to a space of play and deconstruction.
Gagosian Gallery, New York
In December of 2010, during the Anselm Kiefer exhibition entitled, “Next Year in Jerusalem,” Will Pappenheimer discovered that a subspecies of Bufo Virtanus, had spread to the Gagosian Gallery in Chelsea, New York. Researchers from VF Labs went there to see the spectacle. It is not yet known what habitats the subspecies gravitates towards, other than heroic or sublime artworks, which certainly would include those of the Anselm Kiefer exhibition.
ManifestAR @ ICA
Screenshot of the Goddess of Democracy, by 4Gentelmen from ManifestAR@ICA, May 2011.
In “Art Critic Face Matrix Reloaded: You call this ARt!?!?,” by Tamiko Thiel, a matrix of art critic faces, with animated expressions ranging from skepticism to outrage, hovers inside the ICA, Boston.
“Biggâr,” by Sander Veenhof consist of 7.463.185.678 virtual blocks encapsulating the whole earth, making it the biggest possible virtual sculpture in the world. A leap forward in terms of scale, based on new limitless dimensional possibilities brought to the physical space through augmented reality. The one-dimensional “1px” work, at the ICA Boston, is an attempt to discover the limits of augmented reality in the opposite, minimalistic direction. Never before was it possible to actually create a truly one-dimensional piece for real. But with augmented reality, it is. Augmented reality gives us total dimensional freedom. Even to skip redundant dimensions.
“Mao Wants His Money!,” by Geoffrey Alan Rhodes, included two augmented reality features. The first is a set of augments hovering in space above banks and ATMs near the ICA, Boston. The second converts users’ dollar bills into Mao Dollars when viewed on a smart phone using the “Mao Wants His Money!” app. Each bill becomes an I.O.U. and reminds us, “The United States of America owes China One Dollar.” Oh no! Mao wants this dollar!
Venice Biennial 2011 AR Intervention, Giardini
As one of the world’s most important forums for the dissemination and ‘illumination’ about the current developments in international art” the 54th Biennial of Venice could not justify its reputation without an uninvited Augmented Reality infiltration. In order to “challenge the conventions through which contemporary art is viewed” ManifestAR constructed virtual AR pavilions directly amongst the national pavilions in the Giardini. In accordance with the “ILLUMInations” theme and Bice Curiger’s 5 questions our uninvited participation will not be bound by nation-state borders, by physical boundaries or by conventional art world structures. The AR pavilions at the 54th Biennial reflect on a rapidly expanding and developing new realm of Augmented Reality Art that radically crosses dimensional, physical and hierarchical boundaries. Our new virtual Biennial pavilions inside the Giardini drew attention to the importance of such developments in a globalised world.
“Water wARs,” by John Craig Freeman, is a pavilion for undocumented artists/squatters and water war refugees, which anticipates the flood of environmental refugees into the developed world caused by environmental degradation, global warming and the privatization of the world’s drinking water supply by multinational corporations like Bechtel. This version was exhibited as part of the ManifestAR Venice Biennial 2011 AR Intervention, in front of the main pavilion of the 54th Venice Biennial, International Art Exhibition, ILLUMInations in Giardini in Venice.
Tamiko Thiel, who was the main curator and organizer of the Venice Biennial Intervention, created “Shades of Absence: Schlingensief Gilded.” It is an ironic memorial consisting of a hovering gold silhouette of Schlingensief’s absent/presence, surrounded by a halo of terms of censorship often used to describe his work. It was geo-located in the German Pavilion of the Venice Biennial.
Distributed Collectives, Little Berlin, Philadelphia
An exhibition of three web-based artist groups: Computers Club, Manifest.AR and F.A.T. The artists in these groups are located in cities all over the globe, including Berlin, New York, London, Phoenix, Boston, Amsterdam among others – many of them have been working together closely online for years but have never met in person. This show examines the history and structure of the groups and looks at the diverse processes and approach of the artist working on the interwebz.
Will Pappenheimer leads an AR tour for the community during the opening of Distributed Collectives at Little Berlin in the Kensington District of Philadelphia, August 2011.
bUD (Bureau of Urban Devolution) bUD Charter, from Distributed Collectives, Kensington, Philadelphia, 2011, Will Pappenheimer, augmented reality visualization, bUD supports areas of metropolitan districts which entertain general questions about the forward movement of culture in a time of social contract failure that encourages citizens to go back to more positive primitive forms of farming, simple technologies and forest life. Through augmented reality, bUD can move quickly into an area, put disintegrating buildings up into the air and distribute instant "touch and grow" tree pads. A typical city block can be reclaimed in a mater of a few hours.
Metro-NeXt, by Lalie S. Pascual, Caroline Bernard and John Craig Freeman is a follow up to Martin Kippenberger’s Metro-Net project. Before his untimely death death in 1997 at age 43 , Martin Kippenberger imagined a conceptual global underground metro system and started to construct entrances to it in different cities around the world. These faux subway stations led nowhere physically, but conceptually linked the cities and people of the world. Rather than subway stations leading to nowhere, Metro-NeXt leads to a virtual realm, a mixed reality portal, linking the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia, to Boston and Lausanne Switzerland. Using augmented reality technology, users/passengers can enter the Kensington Station and teleport to their city of choice.
Not There, Kasa Galeri, Istanbul
“Not There” is an exhibition of artworks from the ManifestAR Venice Biennial 2011 AR Intervention. The Kasa Gallery show, curated by Lanfranco Aceti and Ozden Sahin, was presented in a partnership with Leonardo Electronic Almanac (Leonardo/ISAST) and the art show “Not Here, which took place at the same time in the Samek Art Gallery.
Crystal Coffin by Lily & Honglie is inspired by the crystal coffin displayed in Mausoleum of Mao Zedong on Tiananmen Square since 1977, a year after Mao’s death. In the twenty first century, while China has been transforming itself into a modern society in many ways and gaining more influences economically and politically around the globe, Mao’s crystal coffin, the immortal-looking shell, remains exist as a symbol of authoritarian ruling system.
Not Here, Samek Art Gallery, Lewisburg, PA
While they are not inside The Gallery, these artworks have been dropped off, virtually, outside the doors of The Gallery and they have spilled out of the building across the Bucknell University campus. To view these artworks on-site, follow the instructions at right. These artworks can be viewed from only two places on Earth: Venice, Italy and Lewisburg, PA. They can be not viewed from anywhere.