MoMA Display Screens (2004)
9-channel video system: nine 30" HD monitors, 10 computers
MoMA Display Screens is a video installation on permanent display in the lobby of the Museum of Modern Art in NYC. Images of the museum's collection and text information reveal themselves, transforming in and out of abstraction, with slow ethereal actions.
The system does not play back video files; instead it dynamically manipulates still images in real-time, by distorting them, layering them, blurring them. The software browses a catalog of still images, then algorithmically chooses which to work with, and what to do to them. Image events are synchronized to occur on groups of screens, or even across the wide image field of all nine screens.
Because the software is constantly making rule-based decisions, the content displayed will never be exactly the same twice. It will run indefinitely without repeating itself.
The museum regularly provides the system with new still images of special exhibitions and events, so the content displayed is always new, and always evolving.
MoMA Display Screens is a project of MoMA, Imaginary Forces, and Kurt Ralske. I designed the system architecture, wrote the image processing code, and designed most of the image event sequences. A technical "white paper" can be read here.