230 am in studio working hard for our mid term review this friday
Posts tagged studio.
Our point of departure for this project is that Vimeo has produced a radical shift in our experience of film. The passive viewer of the hollywood film has become an active user, who is at once viewer, filmmaker and critic. This means that a physical venue for the Vimeo experience calls for an entirely new spatial typology.
To discover the space of Vimeo, we started by an exhaustive and rigorous study of existing film-related typologies. Our concerns were based on the body’s relationship to film. We also compiled an exhaustive spreadsheet of quantitative information such as screen size, number of viewers, distance of viewers from film source, etc. which we will use to eventually help generate optimal forms.
Here are the existing typologies:
With over 3.7 million registered users, Vimeo is the world’s largest social network of exclusively user-generated videos. Over 8.5 million people in the U.S. alone visit the site each month. Recent developments in communication technology and network theory have aroused a vast sum of creative capital, which Vimeo has harnessed to fundamentally reorganize film culture around the world. Vimeo is now poised to create a new type of physical interface to complement the existing web community for social gathering around film.
To imagine the new typology, we can recall Richard Sennett’s distinction between the ancient greek square (agora) and theatre (pnyx): “Two very different kinds of democracy were practiced in the square and the theater. The square stimulated citizens to step outside their own concerns and take note of the presence and needs of other people in the city. The architecture of the theater helped citizens to focus their attention and concentrate when engaged in decision-making.” The feature-length movie theater is a watered-down version of the pnyx, while Vimeo reflects a space that is closer to that of the agora. We envision an immersive shared experience in which the passive viewer becomes the active user. Every user is a potential viewer, filmmaker and critic, engaging other users democratically offline as well as globally via the world wide web. Physical interactions between users will take place at multiple scales in a continuous space that is differentiated by the ephemeral properties of light, sound and movement. These properties should also play into considering how the physical interface is embedded in the larger city network. Just as Richard Sennett describes the disinterested yet engaged citizen standing under the roof that lines the edges of the agora, an unknowing passerby in the city who catches a glimpse of an ongoing event can share the experience passively at a distance or potentially join in the action actively. Because the format of the videos is relatively short and the commitment is to quality rather than to time and money, users are free to come and go as they please.
Vimeo has harnessed a vast sum of creative capital, fundamentally reorganizing film culture around the world.
We began by identifying both the physical and virtual agents participating in Vimeo’s network. We distilled the network into clusters and identified points were revenue is generated.
Next, we made additional connections based on revenue and social gathering, allowing us to establish points of immediate spatial potential.
As evidenced by the current VimeoOffline events, the inaugural Vimeo Festival + Awards last year, the organization of the actor-network diagram, and the numerical data, it’s apparent that Vimeo is in a position to go “offline” by way of a venue for gathering, a new type of interface that celebrates user-generated film.
What is the new typology of this offline environment?
Returning to Richard Sennett’s distinction between the Agora (a democratic, decentralized space of transient interaction) and the Pnyx (an anti-democratic space commanding focused attention and concentration), we identified existing types (theater, film festival, museum installation, drive-in theater, concert, Vimeo online interface) for viewing video content.
A weak pnyx, the conventional movie theater allows for no control over the experience - as Slavoj Zizek says, the cinema tells the viewer how to desire.
The drive-in theater was the most interesting and closely-related to Vimeo because the user has more control over his or her relationship to each other, to the film, and to the acoustics. Both the drive-in and Vimeo are simultaneously intimate and collective, only the latter exists in the virtual realm.
By looking at the way Vimeo operates and the previous typological diagrams, we set up criteria for the investigation of this new typology through the above 5 points.
Then, we identified precedents to situate ourselves and help us envision this criteria.
The surface would be shaped to both receive projection and envelope the space. In addition, the surface could articulate different acoustic zones (see: Jean Nouvel / Copenhagen Concert Hall, Diller + Scofidio / Hirshhorn Museum Bubble & Public Sky)
The enclosure would be shaped to invite people from the street, enabling an ease of movement (see: Atelier Bow-Wow / BMW Guggenheim Lab, OMA / Jussieu Library, Steven Holl / Storefront for Art & Architecture)
IMMERSIVE SHARED EXPERIENCE
The passive viewer becomes the active user, informally relating to each other and the film with much more control (see: Postopolis NY / Storefront for Art & Architecture, Crown Fountain / Millennium Park, Doug Aitkins / Sleepwalkers @ MoMA)
Users will engage at multiple scales in a continuous space that is differentiated by the ephemeral properties of light, sound, and movement (see: SANAA / Rolex Learning Center, Ernesto Neto / Walking in Venus Blue Cave)
As everyone’s property, the space becomes common ground, a potential host to constantly changing events that, in turn, generate different groups of users. The space could even exist across multiple sites - a temporal venue for the city to discover (see: Seeper, IAC Building Projection, Anish Kapoor / Ark Nova, Archigram / Instant City)