House Party is an interactive installation that uses the intuitive interface of a traditional dolls house, albeit with anthropomorphized characters, to explore a narrative with multiple plot threads. By placing characters face to face spectators can listen into conversations in order to navigate the story and find out more information about events.
Inspired by the techniques of Victorian ‘Ingénieurs’ (the engineers behind magicians)and the imagery of contemporary Japanese designers such as Nagi Noda, the artist created a piece that augments the computer with the internal mechanics of a modern illusory toy. An exploration of author Arthur C. Clarke's third law, any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
The installation uses the fidicial tracking patch developed by the Reactable team in 2003 to create their collaborative electronic music instrument. A webcam set in the hollow plinth of the installation points up, looking through the perspex floor of the dolls house tracking fidicial markers placed on the bases of characters. This allows VVVV to determine the x and y postions of characters as well as their orientation.
VVVV passes these values to Adobe Director through the OSC encoder to the OSCXtra plugin. Depending on characters orientation and distances from one another different audio clips are triggered giving the effect of conversations between the House Party guests.
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