[-empyre-] Biennales Plus and Minus

Tamiko Thiel tamiko at alum.mit.edu
Sun Jun 12 18:09:11 EST 2011

Hi Tim,

Thanks for the interesting question on why we did not make the artworks 
available as netart!

The Layar technology (www.layar.com) that we use for the intervention is 
intrinsically location specific. It geolocates a virtual artwork at a 
specific GPS location, and when you are physically present at that 
location and search on the name of the artwork you can see it overlayed 
on a camera view of the environment you are standing in.

Our artworks for the Venice Biennial Intervention were very much 
produced as site specific artworks for the two locations of the Giardini 
and Piazza San Marco, and therefore may have a somewhat different 
meaning, and certainly have a different emotional impact, at another 

This was made most forcefully apparent to me when I developed the AR 
artwork "Carnation Rain (Largo do Carmo)" for Carmo Square in Lisbon, 
where the Carnation Revolution began. At any other location this 
animated rain of carnations is perhaps pretty, perhaps kitschy. But in 
Carmo Square, where historic images show the distinctive buildings of 
that square surrounded by tanks and soldiers, and these soldiers 
(slightly later!) with carnations in their gun barrels, "Carnation Rain" 
creates - imho - a powerful and moving statement:

It is obviously possible to separate the artworks from their context, 
and they can be meaningful without those contexts - but the meaning 
shifts, as it does with for instance Andy Goldworthy's ordered nature 
artworks taken out of their natural setting, or for that matter any 
other site-specific works.

Actually, Richard Rinehart is right now playing with this question in 
"Not Here," the exhibit of our Venice artworks that he is NOT showing in 
the Bucknell University Samek Art Gallery right now. See his press 
release at: http://www.bucknell.edu/x70622.xml

We have placed copies of the works outside the gallery doors, and they 
will be "let in" to the gallery in the fall when the university opens 
again. But when the gallery is open we will show the documentation of 
the artworks in Venice in their site-specific setting, to lend context 
to how the works are perceived in the gallery without that context.

take care, Tamiko


Message: 3 Date: Sat, 11 Jun 2011 08:36:04 -0400
From: Timothy Murray <tcm1 at cornell.edu>
Subject: Re: [-empyre-] Biennales Plus and Minus

 > >Thanks so much for sharing these links, Tamiko.  It's wonderful to
 > >have this cartographic trace of such an exciting onsite AR event.
 > >It's a fabulous extension of the official biennale process.  Great
 > >to see stills of the work.

I'm interested by the participants choice not to extend the
availability of the works more broadly online as net.art pieces.  Was
this choice a technological determination related to the smartphone
interface and the desire for onsite intervention or were there added
considerations involved.



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