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A Panorama of the Skies

A Panorama of the Skies

Maja Petrić

Exhibited December 2015–March 2016

Transforming a room into an ever-changing skyscape with the RoomAlive Toolkit

A Panorama of the Skies is a prototype of an audiovisual installation created in collaboration between artist Maja Petri and human-computer interaction researcher Hrvoje Benko at Microsoft Research. Their focus was the innovative application of immersive technologies that morph the experience of space, engaging perception, emotion, and imagination.

For this project, Maja and Hrvoje transformed the experience of a regular conference a room in Microsoft's Building 99 to that of a sky transitioning from dawn to sunrise and storm to calm, enveloping the visitor in a heightened sensory space.



A normal conference room at Microsoft is transformed…

A normal conference room at Microsoft is transformed…

a dawn skyscape

into a dawn skyscape

where the sun rises

where the sun rises

until the lighting strikes

until the lighting strikes

a storm takes over

and a storm takes over

the calm after the storm

followed by calm

elevating the immersed viewer to a new emotional plane

elevating the immersed viewer to a new emotional plane

a multi-projector, multi-depth-camera framework

To achieve this audio-visual effect, they used a multi-projector, multi-depth-camera framework, the RoomAlive Toolkit. This system uses five projectors and eight Kinect cameras to acquire a detailed map of the room, register the projectors and cameras into a single coordinate system, and enable real-time projection mapping in the scene.

Sound was created by Daniel Peterson, a doctoral student at the University of Washington's Center for Digital Art and Experimental Media whose emphasis is composition and 3D spatial sound with ambisonics. Using recordings of natural sounds, he produced a soundscape that modulated between the real and the imaginary via experimental 3D audio techniques.

About the artist

Maja Petrić

Maja Petrić is an artist working at the interface of science, technology, and art. Her work is about transforming poetic experience of space through light. During her art residency at Microsoft Research, she explored the essence of the sky thematically and experientially in collaboration with natural interaction researcher Hrvoje Benko and machine learning researcher Nebojša Jojić.

Maja grew up in Croatia during the violent fragmentation of Yugoslavia. It was then that she became preoccupied with using art to transform the sense of her surroundings. Her work is about transforming the poetic experience of space through light.

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The team

Hrvoje Benko

Hrvoje Benko

Research Science Manager
Oculus Research

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Daniel Peterson

Daniel Peterson

Sound Artist
University of Washington

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