You are here… somewhere else


Playful and poetic installation, You are Here… Somewhere Else is a monumental device urban interactive maps, a journey that begins under your feet, in your neighborhood, and takes you into the stars.
Come to the game of video projected lights, symbols, details and videos where space moves in a fun and interactive human mapping. In walking, the city, and soon the world is at your feet.
Residents, passers-by, visitors discover the unexpected and symbolic plural apprehensions of the city and the neighborhood.

It deals with relationship with the landscape through areas of vertical and horizontal projections. Imagine drawing a map ground, facing a screen that reacts to your movements in
real time as you explore the corners of the map. With an audio-spatial system, walkers, players give rise to surprising animations
projected in front of them: tables, pictograms, testimonies and stories from people, maps, etc. From one table to another, discover many ways to approach territory, light…and play!
The contents of these tables are created through a process of exchange, shared thoughts, creative and artistic workshops, in a kind of territorial infusion conducted with residents.

How did this project use Max?

The video system was entirely made with Max. A lot of OpenGL layers could be controlled individually by the visitors. camera tracking with cv.jit The system ran on a quadcore Macbook Pro. The patches communicated through UDP with live for the sound.

Do you remember the first Max patch you ever made? What was it?

My first patch was in 2003. I was a student at the art school "Le Quai" in Mulhouse when I discovered the potential of Max/MSP Jitter for video.
It was at a workshop with the didascalie.net theater group. They were working on the video patch "Mirage" for theater developed with objects softVNS. The objective of this workshop was to create small theater scenes with controlled players with the wireless sensor hardware Kroonde for dance and theater live video.
It was also an opportunity to meet and talk with great artists such as Johnny dekam or Pedro Soler. The video was in real time, and Max/MSP offered the possibility to program with a graphical interface (and without lines of code).
My first creation with Jitter was "Faille" with choreographer Andreas Schmidt in 2004. I was in charge of developing the generator and the visual tracking. I think it was really my first artistic experience with Max/MSP. Watch it here.

How did you come up with this project idea?

The history of this project began when I was working to develop a monitoring system to identify several dancers. I was in my apartment and I decided to film with my infrared video camera the tourist spot under my window in Lyon to try to track the people on my patch.
I noticed a lost tourist looking on a map for his location. I suddenly wanted to tell him: "You are here" pointing my screen! I love the absurd and I think this is the starting point of the "You are here" project.
The light festival in Lyon accepted the first draft of "You Are Here" with a projection on the ground 8m by 6m. The concept was born. After the local success of the installation, I decided to make a new one, more ambitious technically with one projection on the floor and one on the building. Gives one a more immersive experience in the urban space. The project on the city and its inhabitants, the idea was to bring visual and audio together with residents to achieve an imaginary map of the city.

What sorts of problems did you have to solve?

I had to develop a robust tracking system that works on an area of ​​12 by 9 meters to work with many people and even in the rain. So I used the library "cv.jit" developed by Jean-Marc Pelletier and cv.jit.touches.recycle patch.
For the development of visual effects, I had the problem follow from 1 to 40 drops. So I developed a set of visual works with a minimum of 18 frames per second.
After finding the effects on the contrary, I could start writing with narration and make this composition.

If there were one person who you would want to see your project, who would it be?

I think like any artist has the desire to be seen by as many people and confront the greatest number of public. It is a dream for one day Daito Manabe and Masato Tsutsui to see the project and propose a collaboration to develop this project.
I remain open to any proposal for collaboration with other digital artists. But I'll admit that my wife is pregnant -- I expect a child during this month -- so my greatest pleasure will be to see him play on this system in a more or less near future.

At the conclusion of this project were you:
a) exhausted
b) ready to do a new one
c) thinking of ways to expand it
d) [other, please describe]

a) exhausted
The project requires a lot of energy. The duration of the workshops is 15 days in each city. Our goal is to meet the inhabitants of the city to create visual and audio tracks to finish the project.
Then comes the time of release or we must adapt to the architectural context for the technical installation and solve problems. Each version is a challenge.
For example in Cascais (Portugal), we will cover the surface of a museum of Paula Rego (photo) pyramid, and we must add an additional video projector for complete coverage. I had to rewrite the entire program so that it can be projected onto any surface.

b) willing to make a new
The team and I are always ready to leave for new adventures to meet new people with this project.

c) consider ways to extend
Since 2012 Max/MSP evolved to offer new possibilities with Gen and physics objects. I added two new interactive pieces and mapping recently in Bruges (Belgium) I want to develop the project in a more immersive dimension as the "Cave" with 4 faces of projections in urban space.

worshops in Reims (french) : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5uzhsZlAt-o
Brugges in belgium : https://vimeo.com/92732013
Tallin Estonia : https://vimeo.com/84325572
Cascais Portugal : https://vimeo.com/76041163
Slovenia : https://vimeo.com/65590216
Lyon : https://vimeo.com/35249739