The Bridge Fact Sheet

This thematic exhibition explored connecting people, cultures, and society through innovative uses of computer graphics technology. The Bridge opened at the New Orleans Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) 22 July and ran through 9 August. At the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, five blocks away, The Bridge was presented 4-9 August.

The bridge between the CAC and the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center was a high-speed network that spanned the gap of five city blocks between one site of the show and its mirror site; it also connected the contributing artists to each other, the Internet, the World Wide Web, and the show's visitors.

The Bridge: SIGGRAPH 96 Art Show was the 17th annual SIGGRAPH show and represented the only international channel of its caliber for computer-generated and interactive art. One hundred twenty pieces were submitted, and 35 were selected.

"Employing interactive technologies and Internet links between the conference and the CAC, the Bridge educates and bridges important issues connecting artists, educators, and regional and internation communities," said Jean Ippolito, The Bridge Chair.


The Excessive Image

Gerald Cannon
Independent Artist

This work, by New Orleans artist Gerald Cannon, contains more than 200 images, with an installation at both the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center and the Contemporary Arts Center. Components of these images are infrequently repetitive, thereby creating links that reflect recontextualization, such as those created by differing representations of O.J. Simpson. It is the artist's intent to play with the cheapening of images in a way similar to what happens in society's burgeoning image glut while investigating what this means to viewers confronted with this in an art context. The Bridge allowed the artist to link two rather diverse audiences: SIGGRAPH 96 attendees and visitors to the Contemporary Arts Center.

Neither Here Nor There

Daniel Sandin
University of Illinois at Chicago

The title of this collaboration reflects the ethereal status of cybercommunication in current society. It also characterizes the notion that while on a bridge you are between locations. It is a state of being that is time-based, where geographic location (space) is irrelevant.

In Neither Here Nor There, virtual reality becomes accessible to digital artists through the ImmersaDesk, a projection-based, drafting-table-sized virtual reality system. The size and position of the screen provides a sufficiently wide field of view so the viewer feels fully immersed in the visual scene. Head tracking allows the participant to experience a first-person view as opposed to a third-person view experienced on other visual media. The user's hand position is tracked by the "wand," the main control device with which participants manipulate the scene. Additionally, the desk is surrounded by a directional sound system.

Mozart's Piano Fugue, Opus 154 "A Musical Score Lent Acoustic Form"

Christian Moller and Elsa Prochazka

The work consists of a pedestal with analog-capacitive glass surface. Behind the glass, an original musical score for Piano Fugue, Opus 154, is exhibited in the usual picture frame. When a visitor touches a note on the sketched musical score, a sequencer specially developed for this installation generates the corresponding musical note.

Rouen Revisited

Golan Levin
Interval Research Corporation

Paul Debevec
University of California, Berkeley

In Rouen Revisited, an interactive installation is presented in which users are invited to explore the facade of the Rouen Cathedral as Monet might have painted it, from any angle, time of day, and degree of atmospheric haze. Users can contrast these re-rendered paintings with similar views synthesized from century-old archival photographs, as well as from recent photographs that reveal the scars of a century of weathering and war. This installation uses a new modeling and rendering technique developed at the University of California, Berkeley that allow three-dimensional models of architectural scenes to be constructed from a small number of ordinary photographs.

The Meadow

Nancy Paterson
Independent Artist

The Meadow explores and manifests the metaphorical space that lies between the simulated and the real. Ambiguity and irony also share this space, and it is here that new mythologies and realities may be imagined. This space is particularly appropriate to artists working with new electronic technologies to bridge the gap between science and fiction. Stepping into the installation, the viewer is surrounded by four large color monitors, each displaying real-time, full-motion video of a different view of a meadow as seen from a central vantage point. It is winter in the meadow, when suddenly the season shifts. The views remain the same, but a certain motion or sequence of movements has triggered a transformation. Suddenly, its spring. The viewer discovers, moving within the installation space, how to trigger these seasonal changes and finds it is possible to move backward in time, from winter to fall, or across seasons, from fall to spring. Effects may also be triggered: sound of geese flying overhead, a persistent buzzing of mosquitos, children playing and laughing.

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Final SIGGRAPH 96 Web site update: 25 October 1996.
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