Mad Zoo projection workshop


From February 14th through the 11th the Le Zoo nightclub in Geneva, Switzerland hosted a five day projection art workshop. Traditionally workshops are one or two days. However the technical director of Le Zoo, Andrien Boulanger (aka Bou) wanted to have a workshop where the participants collectively used their newly learned skills, and the resources of Le Zoo, to create an installation for the parties of the coming weekend.

The workshop was conducted by Eric Morzier and I. Eleven people attended. With the exception of three people everyone was based in Geneva.

Each day started at 17h00. We started at 15h00 as the week wore on because the attendees needed more time and assistance in preparing their material. In the beginning we would finish around 19h00 and finished later towards the end with the participants VJing until 06h00 the next day. Yours trully has had his fill of staying up all night and would crawl into bed at 02h00.

The first day was dedicated to teaching Modul8. The second day was focused on MadMapper in conjunction with Modul8. Thursday and Friday were dedicated to assembling the installation and preparing materials for it.

With the conclusion of the first day Bou and I began setting up the mapping workshop for the next day. We had the slight misfortune of not being able to find white boxes in Geneva. We ended up buying regular brown boxes and painting them white. I think we had around 42 boxes. Luckily we had rollers instead of brushes, and the paint we had was water based and it dried quickly. Then Bou had to go about hanging all of the projectors while I made the box setups.

The setup requires that each participant have a table, projector and some kind of little installation of boxes or a model to map.

In previous workshops we have rigged the projectors using magic arms to the tables. The problem with this is that if the tables are shaky the projection moves every time someone leans on the table. As a result, I have been asking for the projectors to be rigged onto tripods placed next to the tables. In the case of Le Zoo the place is setup for hanging projectors almost anywhere.

It was actually a good thing that we did not have more than eleven people because we ended up having exactly one projector per-person. The ideal situation! In addition to the white boxes we also had some small scale models that were created for the very first MadMapping workshop last year.

I think we finished setting up around 02h00.

After a short presentation of MadMapper and its capabilities each participant was assigned to a projector and its accompanying installation. This part of the workshop is always my favorite. The room is dark with the exception of the projectors and the glowing faces of the participants illuminated by their laptop screens. I put some music on and coast around the room answering questions and taking pictures. My bad this time for not taking photos of each setup and the results. It is high on my priority list for next time.

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