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The Facade as a Canvas

An immersive and interactive installation presented on the facade of the British Council, New Delhi for the formal inauguration of the renovated resource center.

Where: New Delhi When: 2009 Client: British Council, New Delhi
Project Partners: Roll over this linkconcept artist and visual content: Vishal K Dar
experience definition: xdlab & Studio Vishal K Dar
experiential systems (hardware & software): xdlab
BCL Architecture: Charles Correa
BCL Mural Art: Howard Hodgins
Code help: Flight404
Coded in open source language: Processing
to see project credits.

British Council is formally presenting to the public the renewed library, which is a fusion of the traditional library with a state-of-the-art media resource center.

Experiential Design Lab designed an experiential installation for this event, to:

  • highlight and formally present the renovated library and gather both audience and media attention
  • introduce the Navagunjara story to the audience
  • increase or resonate audience's awareness of the philosophy of interconnectedness
The main facade of the British Council is illuminated with a large scale projection (100m2), that is influenced by, and influences visitor's behavior and interaction. The installation allows visitors to experience the Navagunjara story...

Design :
'Navagunjara' is an avatar of Krishna (from Oriya Mahabharat by Sarla Das). It's a creature composed of 9 different animals. Krishna avatar represents this specter as an inspiration to be in harmony with all living beings. It emphasizes the fact that we are all connected and a form a part of a larger living organism.

The project found its inspiration in the mural on the facade of the building (that of a living tree), and desires to express a relational diagram between 'live' art and architecture. The interconnectedness between us to form a larger living organism inspires the visual representation of an organic jamboree representing the flora, fauna and the nine Navagunjara animals. To establish a connection between people on the ground and the virtual environment on the facade, visitors are represented in the virtual environment as silhouettes, captured real-time, hence aping each move made by the visitor on the ground.

British Council is located on one of the busiest boulevards of the city. The experience enmeshes mythology, sustainability, gaming on an urban level by using the architecture as a canvas.

The audience Experience:
The visitor will have his 'avatar' projected on the façade (screen mounted in the middle aperture). This 'avatar' (silhouette of the person) involves itself with the presently populated field of animals spirits in plenty (rooster, peacock, snake, bull, lion, tiger, elephant, horse).

media gallery

Links here...
Depending on the speed of movement and stillness, the animal spirits move towards the human 'avatar'. If the human 'avatar' movement is erratic, the spirits run away. The animal spirits icons are of two type - domestic and wild. The domestic animals are easy to attract and the wild ones need to be fetched.

When a human 'avatar' has 8 different animals attached to it, it becomes the 'nav-gunjar', or Navagunjara. This triggers off a various animated clips that present the condition of our relationship with these very animals.

India Art Summit 2009 replica:
Experiential Design Lab has been invited to re-display the Navagunjara project in occasion of the the India Art Summit 2009.
Last modified on Wednesday, 11 January 2012 12:54
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