Hackers and artists mashed up web and physical technologies at the Seven on Seven conference at the New Museum on Saturday, building single-day projects that had been planned to varying degrees of detail. “I’m not sure what we will hack on,” game designer Jeri Ellsworth told Betabeat before the event. “I’m gathering up parts, building materials and tools to bring. I hope the airline allows me to check the strange-looking items.”
Ms. Ellsworth and her partner Rashaad Newsome, a New York-based video artist, ended up working on a motion-controlled instrument that simulates vocals.
Other art-hacks produced included supercut.org, built by Andy Baio of Expert Labs, and Michael Bell-Smith, who works with animation and music. The site randomly generates a supercut of supercuts, which are abruptly-cut montages from movie and television scenes, usually cataloging each instance of a specific phrase or trope–every time the Dude drinks a White Russian in The Big Lebowski, for example.
Bre Pettis, founder of Makerbot and NYCresistor, and Zach Lieberman, an open source programmer and hacker, created a sculpture called Important People using facial tracking feedback from an XBox Kinect camera and video footage of people talking about their loved ones, which they projected onto 3D-printed models of the speakers’ faces. “The great thing about this is we have a short time to do things and I look forward to be inspired and push the limit of what’s possible in one day,” Mr. Pettis told Betabeat before the event.
Other hacks included a surrealist card game by Ben Cerveny, who runs VURB, a think tank for urban computational systems, and Liz Magic Laser, a video and conceptual artist; Bringitforward.info (not live), an interactive timeline for historical events by Kellan Elliott-McCrea of Etsy and Emily Roysdon, a New York and Stockholm-based artist; and Behin.de (not live), which enables inline commenting, video, and annotations on the web, by 4chan/Canvas founder Chris Poole and Ricardo Cabello, a Barcelona-based artist and designer. The last hack was an iPad app for layering and fading photographs by shaking or holding the device still, created by iPhone developer Erica Sadun and installation artist Camille Utterback.
The event was part of AOL’s art funding, which includes the Project on Creativity and AOLArtists.com, and was organized by New Museum affiliate Rhizome.