[ISEA2015] Artists Statement: Amaranth Borsuk & Brad Bouse – WHISPERING GALLERIES

Artists Statement

Net art with Leap Motion (2014)

In a domed whispering gallery, even the quietest sounds are carried from one end of the room to another: communication across great distance. Whispering Galleries delivers messages across time — helping a voice lost to history reach a contemporary audience. Visitors to Whispering Galleries see their own image reflected and distorted on a screen, and on its surface, a glowing text appears to float: an entry from an anonymous 1858 diary. The author worked with his hands in many roles: as a woodworker making handles, a dry goods clerk sweeping up and making trade, and a violinist making music at home and church. In daily entries, his week is measured by handwork. Visitors to Whispering Galleries use their own hands to sweep the dust from his diary: gesturing over a Leap Motion controller, they scatter pixels from the text, leaving behind a web of whispers: erasure poems that tell a hidden narrative of 19th-century life, labor, and art.

  • Amaranth Borsuk’s most recent book is As We Know, a collaboration with Andy Fitch. She is the author of Handiwork (Slope, 2012), and, with Brad Bouse, Between Page and Screen (Siglio, 2012), a book of augmented reality poems. The two recently collaborated on Whispering Galleries, an interactive erasure using LeapMotion. Abra, a collaboration with Kate Durbin (forthcoming, 1913 Press), received an NEA-sponsored Expanded Artists’ Books grant from the Center for Book and Paper Arts at Columbia College Chicago, USA, and will be issued this year as an artist’s book with an iPad app by Ian Hatcher.
  • Brad Bouse is a developer interested in the creative applications of code. He has a degree in film production from the University of Southern California, USA, and began his career working in visual effects. He has given several talks about creative code, recently including Cascadia JS, the Northwest’s largest JavaScript conference. His open source art projects include Solving Sol, which facilitates programmatically rendering Sol LeWitt’s wall drawings, and Facets.js, a generative polygonal library. Bouse designed and built the family tree interface for Geni and the original desktop app for Yammer. Currently, Brad runs an interactive design consulting service advising early-stage web startups.

Text with images (PDF)  p. 157