Project Si Poteris Narrare, Licet

Customer Epidemic Paris

Interactive installation with 360°-projection and dynamically generated surround sound

Project leader audio
Architecture and implementation of the real-time audio rendering software
Specification audio recording and reproduction hardware
System integration

Realized 2002

EXIT Festival Paris 2002
VIA Festival Maubeuge 2002
Future Cinema, ZKM Karlsruhe 2003
Medi@Port Festival Athen 2004
Cinémas du futur, Lille – Capitale Europeenne de la Culture 2004
Festival d'Avignon [F] 2005
Festival Arborescence [06], Fondation Vasarely, Aix-en-Provence [F] 2006
DEAF-Dutch Electronic Art Festival 04, Rotterdam [NL] 2007
BodyMedia, O Art Center, Shanghai [CN] 2007
Vom Funken zum Pixel, Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin [D] 2007-2008

epidemic Paris

The projection environment of iCINEMA is a large inflatable dome, which currently is 12 meters in diameter and 9 meters high. This enables an audience inside of about 50 persons. In the centre of this dome there is a column on which a high-resolution video projector is mounted. A computer controlled motor system allows this projector to rotate 360 degrees and move up and down approx. 90 degrees. As a result the projected rectangular area, which is approx. 2 meters wide, can be accurately moved anywhere over the whole screen surface of the dome. Most importantly, the movement of this projector is controlled by one of the visitors with a simple device in his hand that he can point in whatever direction he wants to place the image. In other words, the projector becomes a flashlight that illuminates a portion of a fully surrounding dark yet present space of imagery. The viewer interactively steers this cinematographic flashlight to explore this space, moving from one area to another, lingering on details that interest him, fulfilling his individual path of curiosity and discovery.

We call this technology iCINEMA because the projected imagery is a digital film, a recording of actors, scenery, special effects and or graphics which is stored in a computer as a fully surrounding 360 degree image in an ultra-high resolution (4k x 4K pixels) fisheye format. This fisheye movie runs like a normal film at 25 frames per second. The iCINEMA software enables the viewer to interactively move his frame of view anywhere inside this fisheye movie, and when projected on the dome this software also corrects the fisheye distortion so that the image looks as if it was taken with a normal film camera.

The 6 minutes film project by the renowned French artist Jean Michel Bruyère is the first iCINEMA experience. The implementation of this project will create a platform for invitations to internationally acclaimed film directors such as Raoul Ruiz and Lars von Trier to create new film productions for this unique digital interactive cinematic environment during 2002-2004.

From a purely technological point of view, this project embodies a unique convergence of traditional cinematic and cutting edge digital technologies. As far as we know, we have created the first video post-production environment in Europe that can handle 4K x 4K image resolution (48MB per frame), while the completely custom projection software and hardware system embodies a highly innovative paradigm for the cinematic experience which is a totally appropriate expression of the new possibilities of the digital medium.

Jean-Michel Bruyère (Direction)
Richard Castelli (Production)
Dolfi Matthias (Graphics software)