WithervaneAR
rootoftwo (John Marshall and Cezanne Charles)

Location: Rookery Building; Chicago Board of Trade; Lurie Gardens; BP Pedestrian Bridge
Short Project Description: Where are we going and why are we carrying this hand-basket? rootoftwo are currently undertaking a project to create a 21st Century weathervane – a (headless) chicken that will be robotically driven by the climate of fear (apocanoia) on the Internet. WithervaneAR introduces this project as advertising in the layer between the virtual and physical. ‘WithervaneAR’ builds on our previous work and explores how works can inhabit physical, virtual and purely conceptual spaces in quotidian ways.

Short Bio: rootoftwo’s work derives from our interests and observations related to how context informs and transforms behavior, interactions and relationships. We make opportunities to reframe systems, infrastructures, and networks. Our works specifically attempt to disrupt and undermine the systems at work through humor, play, interaction and participation. Our works create a condition where we can perceive ourselves, the here and now and the future differently.

URL: http://www.rootoftwo.com

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Full Bio: rootoftwo’s work derives from our interests and observations related to how context informs and transforms behavior, interactions and relationships. We make opportunities to reframe systems, infrastructures, and networks. Our works specifically attempt to disrupt and undermine the systems at work through humor, play, interaction and participation. Our works create a condition where we can perceive ourselves, the here and now and the future differently.

As a studio, we work through a process of researching issues, materials, and technologies. We brainstorm related themes and create prototypes. We work to test our ideas and assumptions physically. We approach sites and contexts experimentally. This ability to prototype and fabricate throughout the ideation, integration and implementation phases leads to fully resolved art, social objects, experiences, and works in the public realm. Based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, we have presented work in Australia, Brazil, China, Denmark, Japan, Macedonia, the Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Full Project Description: Where are we going and why are we carrying this hand-basket? rootoftwo are currently undertaking a project to create a 21st Century weathervane – a (headless) chicken that will be robotically driven by the climate of fear (apocanoia) on the Internet. WithervaneAR introduces this project as advertising in the layer between the virtual and physical. ‘WithervaneAR’ builds on our previous work and explores how works can inhabit physical, virtual and purely conceptual spaces in quotidian ways.

WithervaneAR is an aesthetic exploration of blended realities that adopts the conventions of corporations that have moved to be part of this new space.  In a word we are advertising: this location, this city, ourselves, our work, this group, this funder, this 3rd party platform, this platform, and this context. This is a system that seemingly offers new opportunities for engagement but AR can also been seen as a system that merely acts upon rather than truly responds to user behavior. How can we move beyond merely “smart” environments and objects to synergistic environments and objects?  Maybe AR will be part of that evolution as platforms become easier to use and applications become more ubiquitous. But for now – perhaps it is only moving new media art back to the point and click of screen-based interactivity of the mid-late 1990s? While this work attempts to solve some practical and technical considerations, it is also intended to allow for the examination of the social and cultural aspects of machine-mediated interaction and is a first attempt. A flirtation with a format.

“A weather vane is an instrument for showing the direction of the wind. They are typically used as an architectural ornament to the highest point of a building. Although partly functional, weathervanes are generally decorative, often featuring the traditional cockerel design with letters indicating the points of the compass. The word ‘vane’ comes from the Anglo-Saxon word ‘fane’ meaning ‘flag’.” (Wikipedia).

“Henny Penny, also known as Chicken Licken or Chicken Little, is a fable in the form of a cumulative tale about a chicken who believes the world is coming to an end. The phrase The sky is falling! features prominently in the story, and has passed into the English language as a common idiom indicating a hysterical or mistaken belief that disaster is imminent.” (Wikipedia).

“An Apocalypse (Greek: Ἀποκάλυψις Apokálypsis; “lifting of the veil” or “revelation”) is a disclosure of something hidden from the majority of mankind in an era dominated by falsehood and misconception, i.e. the veil to be lifted. The term also can refer to the eschatological final battle, the Armageddon, and the idea of an end of the world.” (Wikipedia).

“Paranoia is a thought process heavily influenced by anxiety or fear, often to the point of irrationality and/or delusion. Paranoid thinking typically includes persecutory beliefs concerning a perceived threat towards oneself. Historically, this characterization was used to describe any delusional state.” (Wikipedia).

Apocanoia – portmanteau word a blend of apocalyptic and paranoia – a disclosure of the thought process heavily influenced by anxiety or fear, often to the point of irrationality and/or delusion. Especially as experienced through contemporary media. Apocanoia explores self-fulfilling prophecies – predictions that directly or indirectly cause them to become true, by the very terms of the prophecy itself, due to positive feedback between belief and behavior.

 
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