Project takes as its starting point the fluidity of the artefact
and the attempts that have been made to fix meaning through classification
and labelling. A 'multimedia' database of objects from the V&A
collection will be made, incorporating 3 dimensional information,
images, and text taken from information panels, this database can
be added to over the duration of the show. This database will be
the core of the online engine for the 'Artefact' project. This engine
then generates new 3D objects through a process that converges elements
from the database within an On-Line multi-user VR environment. For
the duration of the show the 'Artefact' project will evolve through
a generative breeding of the 'genetic' information contained in
the database.Deprived of being able to touch and handle the evolving
virtual/impossible 'Artefact' in the real world/museum, individuals
would be able to virtually 'touch' and manipulate the 'Artefact'
within the On-Line multi-user environment on the Internet. Through
this process of manipulation the 'Artefact' would evolve and take
on further significance as it is reformed and re-classified through
user input. This user input could be collaborative through individuals
working together simultaneously manipulating and redefining, or
sequential allowing a new form to emerge over a longer period of
time. New narratives will evolve around the virtual 'Artefact',
new functions will be decided, more virtual 'Artefacts' may be grouped
and linked through a consensual process of interpretation. The ambition
is to enable a generative process to evolve through the re-interpretation
of the objects, where meaning attributed to an 'Artefact' allows
new 'Artefacts' to be formed through associative links.
This virtual collection of the V&A would slowly evolve and multiply,
becoming more alive than the 'real' collection of 'dead' artefacts
located within the existing gallery cabinets. An additional cabinet
containing the projected images of the virtual 'Artefact' would
enhance the materialisation of the immaterial by denying actual
physical contact to the museums visitors. Questions would be raised
about the nature of all of the 'Artefacts' located in the museums
cabinets, which are real and which are Virtual Artefacts.
Five objects [see process] were selected from the British Galleries
1500-1900 online database as a starting point for the 'Artefact'
Project. The generative rule based system used to breed the 3D artefacts
also mutates the interpretation panel for each object. the percentage
of mutation in the 3D objects corresponds the percentage of mutation
within the interpretation panel.
panel draws on thee sources for its information:
A: The original interpretation and information panel for each object
in the V&A British Galleries 1500-1900 online database.
B: An alternative interpretation panel generated by MODEL.
C: The input from the online viewers.
These are the interpretation panels from categories A and B:
ct64453_p.jpg: ADAM AND EVE COLUMN 1600 - 1620: Museum no. W.25-1959
ct70847_p.jpg: COVERED BOWL Hallmarked for 1899 - 1900: Museum no.
ct23506_p.jpg: NEEDLECASE WITH SCISSORS 1660 - 1690: Museum no.
ct58925_p.jpg: DECANTER 1865: Museum no. Circ.857-1956
ct72468_p.jpg: STEREOSCOPE 1901: Museum no. E.27-2000