DIGITAL ART + LITERATURE

DELTA_ARK

SOLARPUNK POLITICS

STORY + CLIENTS

Since 2011, Delta_Ark has tracked and amplified progressive groups in the United States that work on fair housing and ecological advocacy.

Delta_Ark has created installations on behalf of Occupy Providence, Building #13 Squat, the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project, Biome Arts, Wetland, and Swale.

DATA + SIGNS

Delta_Ark interviews members of these groups, mines their data, and remixes this information into poetic texts that are displayed alongside an animated logo. 

These site-situated literary logos inform outsiders about the group’s values and practices, and provide information about how to get involved with their causes.

timeline + book

This site is an evolving record of Delta_Ark’s ongoing engagements with these groups, and development of technology on behalf of these groups.

Consider each project as a chapter in a book about the people around us who are trying to create a fair, sustainable, free future.

BEACON 2011

OCCUPY NEW HAMPSHIRE

During the republican national primary in New Hampshire, Delta_Ark set up a tent, interviewed protesters about why they were occupying and these reasons were then projected onto the tent's exterior. #TheBeacon was one of the top trending tags at the event.

OCCUPY POznan

The Beacon traveled to Poznan in Poland to participate in the Transatlantik Film Festival in order to protest the European sovereign debt crisis and austerity. The above version of the Beacon juxtaposed images of the crises with lines from the poem “The European Constitution in Verse.”

OCCUPY PROVIDENCE

Delta_Ark developed The Beacon as a three-part installation for Occupy Wall Street. During Delta_Ark’s residency at Occupy Providence, Delta_Ark noticed that passers-by continued to state that they did not understand the protester’s intentions. Because the intentions were so numerous, yet interconnected (as demonstrated by the diagram of the occupation of wall street) Delta_Ark decided to build a system that allowed protesters to broadcast their reasons for occupying on their tents.

occupy interrupt

The Beacon also participated in the Interrupt Festival of Digital Language at Brown University. There, more nuanced aspects of the occupation were highlighted, including the slow dissolution/dissolving of the camp and intra-camp rivalries and divisions.

 

core 2014

utopia, ny

In the summer of 2014, Delta_Ark and Biome Arts co-organized a large scale collaborative project: a two-week symposium on ecology, technology and autonomy that culminated in the construction of a networked, semi-autonomous structure in the woods of Delhi, New York.

solarpunk

This structure served as a performance space, international activist meeting hall, gallery and platform for other artworks. Artists gathered for two weeks to do collective research and mapping of both (a.) the solarpunk science fiction movement and (b.) the solidarity economy.

The biological elements of The Core include cultivated Vanessa cardui butterflies. These insects were drawn to light of the projected mind-map, shifting the attention of participants and thus the flow of conversation. The conversation from the core inspired the following works by the participant artists: forest portrait, paper plants, hardware stories and asemic tilt.

a eco-digital conversation machine

Situated within Forest Pavilion is Delta_Ark's collaborative installation with Biome Arts, The Core. The digital component of Core was an interactive mind-map editable by anyone in the world with internet access. Also accessible within The Core via four computer terminals, the mind-map evolved as participants discussed, rearranged, and added new topics along an axial coordinate system. The mind-map was also projected on to a multi-layered column of sheer fabric at the center of The Core.

FOREST PORTRAIT

Terri Chiao and Adam Frezza used footage taken during daytime meditations in and around the pavilion to project onto the walls of the structure at night. The footage draws attention to natural sunlight “projections” through the forest canopy. The imagery also catalogs the softly rustling forest scenes, moss tips bending with the wind and sunlight glittering across the surface of a stream.

PAPER PLANTS

Terri Chiao and Adam Frezza created paper plants that examined the tension between nature and artifice. The series is an exploration of shape, mark, color, and character in the form of abstract papier-mâché sculptures. The plant sculptures visit a meadow and forest where the real and imaginary plants become the subject of a series of photographs. The sculptures were on view in the Forest Pavilion for a one-night gallery opening in the forest.

hardware stories

Anne Goldenberg created Hardware Stories, a research-to-production performance about the material and mineral origins of our electronics, the condition of their production and their ultimate destination. Our computers deal with the immaterial: speech, thoughts, knowledge; therefore, we think of them as immaterial. Yet, from violent extraction in African mines, to poisonous soldering and repetitive assembly by Chinese companies, the workers that make our everyday electronics live under severe physical and psychological threat. The performance was a first exploration of the spiritual and ecological dimensions of these supply lines. It involved one dying computer, three humans, two projectors, somes images stolen from the web, poetry, magical and spiritual and textual inspirations, a dead butterfly, a dead hornet, plants, stones, a theremin and a thread of LEDs.

Asemic Tilt

Brian House set up a four-channel sound system projecting out from the structure and into the surrounding territory. He sent pulses into each speaker whose rate was determined by the angle above the horizon of four celestial bodies (sun, moon, uranus, saturn). The pitches of the pulses were generated via an algorithm mimicking Arvo Pärt’s tintinnabuli method of voice layering. Finally, the timbre and texture of the sound came from him as he meditated while maintaining a note on a melodica for the duration of the piece. Here to Listen.

Jonathan Sims created digital images to accompany the performance (animated with the technical assistance of Gene Kogan). Jonathan exhibited a new crop of asemic glyphs and linear scripts arrayed with new and abstract imagery.

Dream Catcher 2015

PROJECTIONS ON BEHALF OF SQUATTER’S RIGHTS IN PROVIDENCE RHODE ISLAND

“Electricity, really, is just organized lightning.”

A FACTORY FOR ARTS AND LIVING

Building #13 was a semi-legal multiple collective live-work and performance space in Olneyville, Rhode Island. It was housed in 36 Manton Avenue, one of the largest industrial buildings in the state. In 2013, the residents were evicted and the Olneyville Housing Corporation acquired the building. These collective live-work spaces played an important role in cultural regeneration of the city as well as preserving the buildings against further decay. This role was under-recognized by the political and economic forces of the city. Delta_Ark brought attention to that role through the construction of several installations.

REPURPOSING SPACE + TESTIMONY

For the first installation, Delta_Ark took over a room and converted it into a projection space; a projection was created for the glass facing the street that spoke to the current state of the building. For the second installation, the former occupants were interviewed about their time in the building and their interviews were distilled into short texts that were wrapped into a network diagram and projected in the nearby area. For the final installation, Delta_Ark kept a record of explorations of similar spaces throughout Providence, which exists as a digital video file. The text of this file can also be read here.

Islands, accidents 2015

PROJECTIONS FOR MARY MATTINGLY’S ‘WETLAND’

“Men argue. Nature acts.”

A PRE-APOCALYPTIC TEST SITE

Mary Mattingly’s Wet Land aimed at confronting operations in a future where networks suffer under ecological, physical and political collapse; during the summer of '14, the sculpture and living space played host to a variety of workshops dedicated to enhancing public knowledge around community activism, ecology and sustainable technology.

A POST-APOCALYPTIC FLOODED WORLD

Fulfilling the role of establishing both context and text, Delta_Ark’s installation cycled between a detailed schedule of the events active during attendance at the project and a litany of undeniable and resilient objects that the vessel would encounter during its voyage through a flooded future world. The full text is available here.

GEO LOCATED NLP & NLG 2016

GEO-LOCATED MEDIA ANALYSIS AND LANGUAGE-GENERATION SOFTWARE

The Software suite

Currently, the library incorporates five tools. “Sample” will scrape and save up to 100 geolocated tweets in batch form. “Real time visualizer” uses “Sample” to create a word frequency distribution chart which can grow and change in real time. “Scan and Respond” scans geo-located tweets and asks the user to verify they are of interest before sending a tweet response. “Suggest_Bot” is an auto-suggest text engine. The user can create poems with bots that suggest either words or phrases based on a pre-defined corpus and/or a geo-located twitter scans of an area. And "Scraper" rips text from websites. Together, these tools allow you to collage the language of the city and respond to it in real time.

“What strange phenomena we find in a great city, all we need do is stroll about with our eyes open. Life swarms with innocent monsters.”

READING AND WRITING AT SCALE

Delta_Ark has built a software library for geo-located scraping, analysis, monitoring and language-generation called Geobot. This library allows an operator to interact directly with the real-time linguistic field of a city. The city is filled with language, constantly shifting and changing; these tools allow you to see it and work with it at scale.

light atlas 2016

PROJECTIONS AGAINST UNFAIR EVICTIONS FOR THE ANTI EVICTION MAPPING PROJECT

A COLLABORATIVE POEM BETWEEN THE EVICTED AND BOTS

The Light Atlas is a 40-stanza light-projected poem about the Bay Area, detailing the takeover of the technology industry, its impact on housing as well as present and future displacement resistance. The Light Atlas is composed of remixed fragments of twitter, testimonies of eviction collected by the Anti Eviction Mapping Project, excerpts of books, collaborations with bots, observations from protests and speculative narrative. The full text can be read here.

“Our cities have become unaffordable to our poorest families, and this problem is leaving a deep and jagged scar on our next generation.”

A DATA UNIOn

The Anti-Eviction Mapping Project is a multi-part citizen-driven data project that collects information about evictions in San Francisco. This data is used by community groups to lobby city hall and plan actions against no-fault evictions and gentrification. While in residence as Eyebeam's Fellow at the Buzzfeed Open Lab for Journalism, Technology and the Arts and then later on at Gray Area Foundation for the Arts, in collaboration with AEMP, Delta_Ark created “The Light Atlas."

ARCHIVE OF THE ECOLOGICAL FUTURE 2016

A FLOATING FARM

Mary Mattingly's Swale is a floating food forest built atop a barge that travels to piers in New York City, offering educational programming and welcoming visitors to harvest herbs, fruits and vegetables for free.

A DATA THEATER

In the summer of 2014, Delta_Ark and Biome Arts co-organized a large scale collaborative project: a month-long symposium on ecology, technology and autonomy that culminated in the construction of the Green House Theater.

agriculture CINEMA

During the symposium, Delta_Ark and Biome arts hosted a film festival for environmental work that dealt with the themes of food scarcity, security and diversity.

an incubator

During the symposium many artists used the archive and the structure as a jumping off point, in order to create their own works.

THE ARCHIVE

Inside the Greenhouse Theater, Delta_Ark and Biome arts build the primary installation: The Archive of the Ecological Future. The Archive has two sections.

The Data Section contains a record of all data gathered at Swale during the summer of 2016; e.g., wind speed, wind direction, location, soil moisture, etc.

The Entry section contains (a.) information on a plant grown on swale, (b.) paired with the name of an organization that participated in the project, along with (c.) a poetic text clipped from the website of that organization.

Throughout the month-long symposium, the archive was available online and also on site, where it was projected into a column of hanging fabric within The Greenhouse Theater.

three californias 2019

AN AR GAME AND SOCIAL WRITING PLATFORM FOR IMAGINING CALIFORNIA’S FUTURE

AR GAMING + SOCIAL WRITING

The Project will be a trilogy of geo-located AR games. Participants will seek out shrines across the bay area, pull data from them, and collectively assemble them into a large scale narrative about the future of the state through a social publishing platform.

“I grew up in a utopia, I did. California when I was a child was a paradise.”

THE FUTURE OF THE GOLDEN STATE

Delta_Ark is working on a trilogy of projects about (1.) a new decentralized internet in California that (2.) is used as a vehicle to develop regional autonomy such that (3.) California eventually becomes the major manufacturing center for sea-steads, launching a series of new nations into the pacific.