Magnifying Connections: creating an installation, episode 1

Something about the chill in the air, a roaring fire, and some jolly ol’ holiday cheer that’s able to sink its holly under our skin and pull people together from all corners of the world. ‘Tis the season for connection. And, here at jungle [8], empowering connection is what we’re all about. So, when asked to create an art installation centered on magnifying the connections of the Los Angeles technology community for Digital Family Reunion, linking Web 1.0 to Web 2.0 and all of us before and future, needless to say, we leaped at the opportunity.

First, what’s Digital Family Reunion?! In short, it’s a party.. with a purpose! It’s common ground to “reignite old relationships, spark new ones, and set the stage to kick off 2009.”

Inviting early adopters and legacy participants of the Internet 1.0 and today’s digitally apt Internet 2.0 tube dwellers, the DFR will create the optimum conditions for these generations to synergize with one another and inspire opportunities that will serve our industries, our region, and our society at large. Attendees will include leaders from all the major industry sectors such as media, entertainment, finance, publishing, venture funding, software, commerce, education, and many more.

So, how to express that, visually? The concept is a connection we all have in common. Our most basis connection, really. That of the molecular bonds that shape the very elements we’re composed of. In order to expound upon this, we were provided upwards of 5,000 business cards from past companies and people involved in the first ages of the LA tech community. By creating an interactive sculpture resembling a molecular bond, then attaching the old business cards to it and on the night of the gala asking current members of the tech community to contribute their business cards, we would bring the old in connection with the new; a social graph of where the tech community has been and where it is going. Below is our original concept design.

With a concept sketched out, it became time to shop. And shop, we did. The vast majority of today was spent in downtown Los Angeles’ floral district searching out styrofoam balls. Styrofoam balls are apparently quite expensive. Our original hopes were to gather a few very large balls, upwards of two feet in diameter — but that dream was quickly smashed upon our discovery that balls of that size are outrageously expensive and only available online. So, we settled on balls ranging from six inches in diameter to twelve inches. See below.

And after a lovely, comfort-food lunch and some brisk walking through downtown, we now have balls aplenty. Our next task, well — we need to attach them. Tune in tomorrow for the next episode of “Magnifying Connections: creating an installation.” Spoiler alert! Acrylic dowels are in our future! Brandon, signing off!

2 comments for “Magnifying Connections: creating an installation, episode 1

  1. Bill Ohlsson
    December 3, 2008 at 7:18 pm

    Hey Brandon…..take those styrofoam balls back. Check out this website with
    the newer Smoothfoam Balls and compare the prices. Dont know if your
    going to decorate them, but the smoothfoam balls are easier to paint or
    stick things into them. Also the larger ones are hollow for cheaper shipping because they nest togther. I will see if I can russel up some other large art projects using them…..great idea and good luck…..oh here is the site.

    http://www.plasteelcorp.com

    Bill Ohlsson

  2. Pingback: “If we knew how connected we are, how would that change everything?” | jungle [8]

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