Commissioned by SHIFTboston, Social Gravity was a large-scale installation for a gala celebrating the entries into the non-profit’s international Moon Capital competition. At the time this project was the largest that Artforming had taken on and utilized tthe full breadth of the group’s abilities in computation, fabrication and interactivity to create a out-of-this-world (pun intended) experience for the night’s activities.
Theoretically the piece dealt with the ubiquity of gravitational force – we set our clocks to it; its gives us tides, seasons and annual cycles; it literally keeps us grounded. In our world, the one in which we as designers reside, there is also a concept of social gravity, a psychogeographic condition best embodied by the Situationist practice of the dérive. By alternating between the roles of the attractor and the attracted it shaped how one consciously and unconsciously interacted with the piece.
The patterns for the suspended geometries were generated digitally and fabricated over hundreds of man-hours. Tables with embedded sensors were fabricated so that the activity of the crowd would provide a feed-back loop for custom software controlling video projections. In the end the installation used over 9,000 square feet of fabric, 800 linear feet of conduit, and 12 hours of compiled video, all for one night.
Special thanks goes out to all those that volunteered to help with the assembly process and to Stebs Schinnerer from Paper Fortress Films.
Location: Boston, MA, US