Jeffrey Shaw


'Trigon Personale', Neue Galerie, Graz 1995

This work extends the tradition of panorama painting, photography and cinematography in the vector of simulation and virtual reality. A rotating platform with three video projectiors allows the viewer to interactively rotate his window of view around a circular projection screen and so explore a virtual three dimensional world constituted by an emblematic constellation of panoramic photographic landscapes.

The installation has a large tranlucent white projection screen in the center of which is a round motorised platform, a computer and three video projectors which project onto a 120 degree portion of the screen. Also on the platform is a video camera which constitutes the interactive user interface that allows the viewer to control his motion through the virtual scene, as well as the rotation of the platform and of the projected image around the circular screen.

The projected scenery is constituted by eleven cylinders which are photographs of landscapes made with a special panoramic camera in various locations - Australia, Japan, La Palma, Bali, France, Germany, etc. Each of these virtual panoramic cylinders is the same size as the projection screen, so from their centers the viewer can reconstitute the immersive totality of the original 360 degree camera views. The ground on which these panoramas are positioned is marked by a diagram of the Sephirotic Tree of the Later Qabbalists. The placement of each panorama connects the visual identity of its scenery with the signification of its location. The LCD screen on the interface camera shows an aerial view of this diagram centered on the viewer's actual position in the landscape.

A microphone on top of the interface camera picks up any sound that the viewer makes and this controls the release of travelling three dimensional texts within the projected scene. Quoted from various sources, these texts offer a discourse around issues of place and language. Whilst the letters originate in the center of the screen, their physical arrangment in the virtual space is dynamically determined by the viewer's movements. After some minutes they become more and more transparent until they disappear, comprising a tracery of something said that temporarily marks each viewer's presence in this work.


Software: Adolf Mathias
Platform: Huib Nelissen
Computer: Silicon Graphics Onyx RE2
Camera interface: Bossinade Lightworks
Production: Neue Galerie Graz and ZKM Karlsruhe

23 October 1944, Melbourne, Australia.
Architecture at the University of Melbourne
Art History at the University of Melbourne
Sculpture at the Brera Academy of Art, Milan
Sculpture at St Martins School of Art, London
Since 1991
Since 1995

Since the late 60's, Jeffrey Shaw has pioneered the use of interactivity and virtuality in his many art installations. His works have been exhibited worldwide at major museums and festivals. For many years he was living in Amsterdam where he co-founded the Evenstructure Research Group (1969-81).
At present Shaw is director of the Institute for Visual Media at the ZKMCenter for Art and Media Karlsruhe. There he leads a unique research and production facility where artists and scientists are working together creating profound artistic applications of the new media technologies.


VIEWPOINT '6th Biennale de Paris' Musee d'Art Moderne, Paris 1975
POINTS OF VIEW Mickery Theater, Amsterdam 1983/4
THE NARRATIVE LANDCSAPE (with D. Groeneveld), Amsterdam 1985
INVENTER LA TERRE La Villette, Paris 1986
HEAVENS GATE (with H. de Wit), Shaffy Theater, Amsterdam 1987
THE IMAGINARY MUSEUM OF REVOLUTIONS (with Tjebbe van Tijen) Brucknerhaus, Linz 1989
ALICE'S ROOMS 'International Art & Science Exhibition', Kawasaki 1989
THE VIRTUAL MUSEUM 'Das Belebte Bild', Art Frankfurt, 1991
DISAPPEARANCE 'The Binary Era', Musee d'Ixelles, Bruxelles 1992
EVE 'MultiMediale 3', ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe 1994
THE GOLDEN CALF 'Ars Electronica', Linz 1994
PLACE - A USERS MANUAL, 'Trigon Personale' Neue Galerie, Graz 1995