AZ Residency Follow up — Filipe Pais

I arri­ved to Resi­dên­cia AZ with a very sim­ple pro­ject in mind cal­led Bloop. This pro­ject explo­res the idea of “enfo” — unnecessary/useless infor­ma­tion and infor­ma­tion over­load on the web, loo­king par­ti­cu­larly to social networks.

Fishes don’t speak, but they com­mu­ni­cate between them­sel­ves. For humans, this is an invi­si­ble pro­cess which is at the moment com­ple­tely insig­ni­fi­cant for us. Who cares about what is a fish saying to the other or even if he’s com­plai­ning or phi­lo­sophi­zing alone? The pro­ject doesn’t intend to put fishes tal­king but ins­tead to use their acti­ons to dump ran­dom mes­sa­ges to twit­ter. This work plays with the metaphor of the glass house and obser­ves this very own moment of social networks incrus­ta­tion.

In order to deve­lop this work, an impro­vi­sed struc­ture was built using some objects avai­la­ble in he kit­chen and all over the resi­dence space to track 2 fishes inside the aqua­rium. The com­pu­ter vision setup was made using 2 came­ras and values of x and y of each blob (fish) were avai­la­ble to cal­cu­late the dis­tance between them, When a mini­mum dis­tance value was rea­ched a ran­dom mes­sage was sent to twit­ter pro­fi­les, Blo­op_a and Blo­op_b, upda­ting its sta­tus. A dif­fe­rent pers­pec­tive of the work using two fishes was also deve­lop but this time with the intent to cre­ate a fake per­so­nal pro­file. Here an algo­rithm sear­chs all over twit­ter for mes­sa­ges with cer­tain key words and post them into fake pro­fi­les con­trol­led by fishes inte­rac­ti­ons. Thus, each pro­file pre­sents a line of inte­rest and shows up as if some per­son could be behind it.

In the first two days I was dedi­ca­ted to com­pu­ter vision issues and also to the com­mu­ni­ca­tion between pro­ces­sing and twit­ter. For the second perspective/project I was coding a small rou­tine in order to com­mu­ni­cate with twit­ter api, search for tags and update each pro­file sta­tus. During the third day (Wed­nes­day) the pro­jects tech­ni­cal issues were sol­ved and wor­king as expec­ted but the fishes see­med not to like their new home and pro­blems came with that. In order to cre­ate a good envi­ron­ment for them, I ran over local shops sear­ching for a new aqua­rium and water tre­at­ment pro­ducts. This task took a lot of time, not because we were in Alen­tejo but because new ideas arri­ved within group inte­rac­tion and new mate­rial needs came to com­pli­cate more the situ­a­tion.

By the end of the week, a team for­med by me, Ricardo Lobo and Mau­ri­cio wor­ked har­dly on the Piano Cock­tail, an ori­gi­nal idea by Boris Vian . The results obtai­ned were enough to cele­brate during the last eve and make everyone, or almost, drin­king trough the divine mecha­nism.

Some moments were odd and I found myself ima­gi­ning and making bizarre things as The Wig’on’wheels:

New ideas came up and they’ll be wor­ked out in the next resi­dence.

This was the last image I have from Mon­te­mor-o-Novo, by the way, a won­der­ful place to work and to get ins­pi­ra­tion.