“Co-Interaction” is an Art group dedicated to the implementation of Hi-tech assisted artistic projects.
Members: Svetoslav Kosev, Atanas Markov, Simeon Jelev
INTERACTION WITH IMAGINARY REALITY
Svetoslav Kosev, Atanas Markov
We, Svetoslav Kosev and Atanas Markov, are two members of Art Group CoInteraction who participate in the event named Interaction with Imaginary Reality. We had planned this to happen a year earlier, but it was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. What we present here are two of our interactive installations created in the last few years. The first one is called Interactive Generative Formations, it was designed in 2014 and was then first shown at VIVACOM Art Hall in Sofia, under the auspices of the exhibition Teachers and Students organized by our colleagues from Sofia University. It was henceforth presented several times in Bulgaria, as well as in the Serbian city of Nis, and in Murcia, Spain. What is characteristic for this installation is that the display is observed on the two-dimensional surface of a screen. It reflects the silhouettes of the volunteering people who play with the virtual objects we have provided and by means of their actions the volunteers become part of the work.
The next installation we present here is called Interaction with a Technological Organism, and it was devised on the basis of the installation mentioned earlier. However, what we aim to achieve in it is to shift the action away from the two-dimensional space and bring it down on the real ground. We decided to extend it on a surface of 500x500x350 cm, and make the installation imitate the behavior of a living organism. A group of helicoradian plants serve as an impellent – an idea we have borrowed from the movie Avatar where the protagonist touches the plant and it provokes an instant reaction from the whole group of the same species to vanish shrinking at their base. On the other hand, it is risky to make an installation of the scale we desired covering the observers' footstep area. Therefore, we decided to raise the moving objects above the heads of visitors, which is certainly more complicated from the engineering perspective. And thus, it became inevitable for an expert in that field such as Engineer Anton Krastev to join our team. We faced another problem asking ourselves "What object shall react to the presence of the observer and how exactly will all this take place?" Then I thought of a toy I had seen on the beach. It was a telescopic ball stretching up when you throw it and shrinking inwards when you catch it. As it later turned out, this toy is known in scientific circles as the "Hoberman Sphere", named after its inventor. After several experiments with it, it turned out that it could be opened and closed by means of servo motors. Having already encountered various vicissitudes in our work, we came to its end by adding musical background composed by Georgi Mlyachkov. Currently our works of Augmented Reality are accompanied by his short sound composition; it is the latest component which significantly expands the originally intended scope of the exhibition Interaction with Imaginary Reality. A while ago I mentioned that we overcame numerous challenges, particularly when Nasko had to solve problems mostly in relation to the electronics, but eventually we managed to come to an end.
In order to amplify what we have previously shown, we decided to add another technological component to the exhibition Interaction with Imaginary Reality. That technology is known as Augmented Reality or AR. We came up with this idea rather at the spur of the moment, but it is a perfectly logical continuation to the overall concept of our viewpoints. Adding such elements to the composition is another way to enhance the possibilities for perceiving a graphic image, which anyhow would be attributed independent aesthetic presence in the exhibition area. This technology opens up broad opportunities for the visual arts, provides new directions in their development, and it can change the manifestation of classical art forms.
Within the project framework Svetoslav Kosev presents 10 of his graphic works, which are accompanied by Augmented Reality implemented by Atanas Markov.
Although they appeared spontaneously as a component of the exhibition Interaction with Imaginary Reality they have proved to be one of the main attractions at its showing in Sofia.