Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Teens and wireless technologies at FreqOUT

I was lucky enough to be invited by the lovely ladies at Vital Regeneration (no website currently) to the FreqOUT launch night at the ICA last night. The idea behind it was to give young people access to various bits and pieces of wireless technology and use them for creativity and learning. They worked with artists and techies to realise and hone their ideas:

1. CCTV is watching me... - this was a film shot using a wireless digital CCTV camera by kids from the Churchill Gardens Estate in collaboration with artist Melissa Bliss and film maker Jake Nowak. This one's definitely worth a watch if you get chance to. If it gets posted to the internet ever, I'll put a link here.

2. Geo Graffiti - this was my favourite. Led by artists Jeremy Wood and programmer Hugh Pryor, kids went around with mobile GPS (global positioning systems) devices and traced their path on earth to create drawings. Back at base the 'drawings' were translated into a manageable size so that the likes of you and I can see them and make some sense of them. They started with creating simple shapes and then graduated to creating their signatures up to 400m wide at Battersea Park. Another project in this installation was to map the local area and mark the places most significant to them. In doing this, they created a map of the Churchill Gardens Estate including the best chip shop in the area. All good stuff.

3. Victoria Voices - young people from the Cardinal Hume Centre interviewd people they found in their local area from office workers, job seekers, armed policement, passers-by, market traders etc to record various attitudes to homelessness, race, and life on the streets in Westminster. A fascinating insight into the local area.

4. Shadow Transfer - Using infrared lights and a video mixer, this installation was about communication through body movement. Participants play, talk and argue with others by projecting their shadows to meet with shadows of others without the hindrance of the usual visual signs by which we usually judge fellow humans (such as skin colour, accent and clothing choice).

All in all, a really exciting range of projects and hopefully a sign of things to come. Watch this space as they say.

Oh, and if you're wondering why I didn't take any pictures, it was because it was too dark and my cameraphone doesn't have a decent flash.

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