Wiretap 4.13 - Transforming the Documentary

In cooperation with the Exploding Cinema program, and part of the IFFR (Internationaal Film Festival Rotterdam), with presentations by Dirk Lüsebrink from ART+COM (D), Sawad Brooks/Beth Stryker (US), and Douglas Gayeton (US); moderated by John Wyver (Illuminations, UK).

Wiretap 4.13 - Transforming the Documentary

event flyer

Jan 1999
location: Lantaren/Venster, Gouvernestraat 133, Rotterdam

Multimedia artist and filmmaker Douglas Gayeton, the director and designer of the interactive version of Johnny Mnemonic and of Vanishing Point, gave a presentation of some of his recent projects which use a Bottom Up Content vs Top Down Content approach. Waking Hours is an interactive, online documentary which followed the lives of 24 young people who lived together, over the course of 24 subsequent hours. Gayeton spoke about the way in which the documentary enabled these young people to become content providers or co-authors of their own documentary.

The DissemiNETion project (by Sawad Brooks and Beth Stryker) could be described as an on line documentary, where visitors were invited to add stories from their personal history. The functioning and experience of memory was visualized in transactions: storing, remembering and forgetting. In the end, DissemiNETion would become a collection of stories in which visitors could wander around, or search for keywords or themes through a search engine. The results from this search engine would provide insight in the mechanisms of the World Wide Web. A diaspora of stories over the Net was the goal of the project. With DissemiNETion, Brooks and Stryker wanted to use internet technology to collect and distribute stories that would otherwise be lost -- stories from communities that, normally, don't have easy access to computers and technology.  

The Invisible Shape of Things Past (by ART+COM) is a tool for Internet environments where film visuals are transformed to digital 3D objects. The 3D objects that are created from film images, are shaped from movements of the camera (zoom, pan, tilt), generating strangely shaped 'film objects'. These film objects can be composed from historical films or documentaries, but also from recent images. The objects are placed in a representation of the city: virtual Berlin. This virtual city can be accessed from a timeline (1930, 1940, 1999 etc.). The film objects are then placed on the locations where they were filmed and can be moved to the same location in another timeframe, forging rich relations in thinking about, designing and organizing the city. Virtual Berlin can be navigated from different camera positions; it is possible to choose locations where film objects are placed and then travel through these images, as film sequences or as VR representations. The project can be related to several on line film databases in order to make it very dynamical. The project can be applied in fields as broad as architecture, film, or education.

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