Self Composed for SFMOMAInstallation
Adobe was approached by San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to create an installation for the relaunch of the museum in 2016. The photographic curators wanted an experience that encouraged people to approach photography thoughtfully and creatively, wanting to help people think critically about photography in a world where camera’s are in everyone’s pockets and image making is cheap.
I joined the project in its early stages, and through a collaborative ideation process with the museum we arrived at a direction inspired by the form of sunprints, or cyanotypes. Through the early webcam prototypes we refined the experience largely as it was installed, where the user’s portrait is obscured until they begin to interact with a glass table in front of them.
As they cast shadows on the table, their portrait is revealed in the cast shadows in the composite, viewed on a screen in front of them in real time, and after a countdown expires is captured. If they like their result, they can print out a receipt with their creation and a link to download the full image. This interaction simply can’t deliver you a photo of yourself unless you are willing to engage with it.
I designed and wrote the original prototypes, first in HTML and JS, later in Open Frameworks and Processing, where we refined the idea of the interaction as well as speced and tested the cameras and lighting arrangements for the final installation. In later stages of the project I wrote the Arduino code for the button and the camera show control system, as well as coordinating development of the application with Adobe’s development team and supporting the content creation for the attract video by the other designers on the project. I also was responsible for working with the vendor responsible for the final build of the cabinets, as well as supporting the technical vendor who handled installation and ongoing support, including training and being onsite for the installation.
Images produced by the installation can be found on Instagram under the hashtag #SelfComposed.