Diamonds in Dystopia: container & tool

Description (in English): 

What does a cutting-edge collaboration between music, visual, and literary artists look like and how did it evolve? This ongoing, transdisciplinary collaboration between said types of artists evolves a born digital interactive poetry application for every presentation and exhibition opportunity. Our mission as collaborators is to open up creative workflows for interactive technologies and artists interested in using them to benefit the presentation and experience of the visual, musical, or literary arts. We developed an interactive, live-streaming poetry web app that takes audience response to trigger improvisations, sensory experiences, and create an event-specific poem collectively. The user acts as collaborator by sending word selections that resonate with individual users by tapping text from a born-digital “seed poem” on their mobiles to trigger Markov chain reactions, which enables succinct recombination of massive amounts of language as source material. The app that creatively data mines +2500 TED talks as a found text corpus to send improvisational stanzas to the poet on stage as well as acting as a multimedia sound installation and interactive performance enhancer for poets. ELO2019 University College Cork #ELOcork 51 We will adapt our interactive performance web app to become a more open tool for parameterized poetry performance—to become a container, stand-alone installation as well as a tool for other literary and multimedia artists to utilize and explore using their own “seed text” and “found text corpus” for unique, interactive performances. This way one need not be a developer to perform heightened text collaboration—with the opportunity for generative input from an audience and a dynamic set of texts—or create unique, new media collaborative poetry from mobile interactivity. This new system would be attractive to contemporary poets, performing artists, and audiences seeking more engagement from readings as well as scholars curious about language processing to creative datamine subtexts. Our precedent for this adaptation is from the first iteration of our interactive poetry application, Causeway, which was exhibited in the “Louisiana Contemporary 2016” Juried Exhibition at the Odgen Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans ( Diamonds in Dystopia is a clustered Node.js application that is served and balanced between Google Cloud Compute and a custom OpenStack installation for interactive art. Users connect to an Express.js HTTP server that displays the original manuscript. They click on individual words that resonate with them which get passed along to a server via WebSockets. Each time a user taps a word the collection of texts, hosted on a Redis server, are searched for the top results that contain that word. Those texts are used as source material for generation through something such as a Markov chain algorithm to generate a new stanza of found text. These new stanzas are fed to the performer who can choose via a "controller" interface running on their own mobile device which to read and display on a theater view.

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Vian Rasheed