Statements on Creative Alliances and Integrated Participation

TrueBit’s #ArtProject at ETHDenver

During the 36-hour ETHDenver hackathon, emerging creatives of the #ArtProject Community worked alongside developers, thought leaders, and artists in the Top Floor Maker Space, imagining art in a decentralized future of blockchain. From Saturday morning through Sunday night, hackathon participants from around the world collaborated to design, iterate and create. Final projects ranged from interactive installations to virtual reality performances, all driven by a goal of bridging artistic expression with technology, asking the key question: how do we connect the Dogethereum Bridge art structure to the Blockchain?

My work in this project takes the form of a facilitator, a guide, a director, who attempts to enable connections between people, including myself, to achieve a series of interactions and experiments to be displayed inside the Dogethereum Bridge public art structure later this summer.

This document gathers testimonies by EThDenver participants who describe their participation in the Maker Space and the prototypes created there.

#ArtProject Tech Lead, Lindy Wilkins’ presentation. Murals by Jessica Angel

THE MAKING

Sophy Wang, Jessica Angel, Richard Beer, and Brady McKenna, took over the space, installing wallpaper, building sculptural pieces and applying adhesive vinyl. New ETHDenver attendees like Kelly LeValley joined the space to make a mural, Lane redding and others, became new friends of the #ArtProject, contributing to the Maker Space with work, ideas and company.

The Making. First day in the space was about covering walls, having presentations and workshops about the Doge-Ethereum Bridge #ArtProject and the technical possibilities to create interactive pieces connecting prototypes to the blockchain.

THE INTERACTION

Lindy Wilkins, Jane Hacker and Matt Condon, developed an interactivity between one of the physical blocks built at the temporary wood shop and a piece of metal pipe, giving birth to a piece representing proof of work that will take place inside the DOGE-ETH bridge.

TrueBit, Status, #ArtProject members, and ETHDenver attendees gathered to discuss the technical possibilities to connect LED lights to blockchain activity. Océane Boulais who was casually at ETHDenver joined the team to develop the Whisper Mailbox piece in collaboration with Ivan Danyliuk and Adam Babik from Status. This project is going under continuos development and it will also be installed inside the DOG-ETH Bridge.

The Interaction. Artists and programmers joined forces to create working prototypes connecting the blockchain to physical art pieces.

STATEMENTS

Lindy Wilkins and Jane Hacker,
Enter The Rabbit Hole (named proposed by ETHDenver participants) was a collaborative work about the concept of “proof of work” in the Ethereum blockchain. Using a pickaxe, you can physically mine Ethereum in real time on the blockchain. With this piece, we hope not only to make an interactive and fun artwork, but to also educate people on how the blockchain actually works. What does “proof of work” mean and what form does that take on the internet? This piece uses an Arduino microcontroller communicating over serial to a node.js server, performing the computational tasks and making a connection with the blockchain. Addressable ws2812b LEDs power the display, which lights up to show your progression in mining. Collaboration with Océane Boulais

Proof of Work
Lindy Wilkins and Jane Hacker connecting the mural

Océane Boulais
Our goal was to bridge artistic expression and the blockchain, so we created an interactive installation for humans to play with an Ethereum testnet. I worked on connecting a whisper node to a low level microprocessor using a Status protocol in order to visually represent different types of messages being sent across the network in real time. At the hack, we also finished an interactive platform to demonstrate Proof of Work, where users were to “mine” on the testnet with a physical pickaxe. We continue to work on manifesting difficulty adjustment per every block mined to make the experience more challenging and fun for the human.

Brady McKenna and Richard Beer

While at EthDenver, Brady McKenna and Richard Beer contributed to much of the preparatory work for the project and constructed the wooden boxes that were used for the interactive “mining” activity as well as the center piece that was next to the musical performance stage.

Richard was also in charge of lighting the stage, video and photography for Brady McKenna’s music performance. Brady’s performance was a multi-instrument interactive experience that was collaboratively produced using the interactive features made available to guests. As people would interact with the various features of the makerspace, Brady would respond accordingly, playing off the energy of the crowd as well as the interactive lighting.

On the topic of virtual reality performances, Brady created a two way “mixed reality window” in the makerspace. This was done by placing a computer monitor in one of the windows of the room along with a camera to feed the event into AltspaceVR.

This allowed people in VR to see and hear everyone at in the makerspace and visa versa. While this was a small scale concept it expresses a larger scale vision for interactive mixed reality application in art.

BUIDLING. Brady and Rich saved the day with their contribution to the sculptural elements of the piece.
Brady McKenna performing in the Maker Space.
Richard Beer managing the live stream — VR — layer of the performance

Chris Hutchinson — STATUS

The Doge-Eth art project inspires an entire new branch of creation in connecting the magic of blockchain into the reality of the physical world we occupy. My contribution to the art project was to display the messages that are passed across the whisper protocol which lives on-top of Ethereum in a tangible form.

Whisper messages are a integral part of Status. The messages are part of a provably dark, multicast protocol. I wanted to bring this dark; peer 2 peer system to light in an artistic way. When a message is sent to one of the mail inbox servers it relays a signal which can be translated into an infinite amount of possibilities for the bridge to display by LED or sound. For example 10 messages to one inbox may flash a whole series of smaller lights and echo into a web of noises and sounds resulting in an ethereal journey.

Creating an interactive experience that anyone can participate in. Exploring and understanding more about the new frontier of web 3 technologies is an amazing pursuit.

Chris Hutchinson leading the Status collaboration with the #ArtProject

Adam Babik and Ivan Danyliuk — STATUS

Ivan: I’d describe it as we created a bridge between decentralized Whisper Mailbox node and NeoPixel LED stripe, which allowed us to visualize incoming and outgoing messages that dApps or Status users send to each other.

Adam: In a nutshell: I built a WebSocket server into Ethereum node which was broadcasting a payload whenever a new Whisper envelope was received from the Ethereum test network.

More precisely, I modified Whisper implementation in geth Ethereum client so that it supported a WebSocket server. Next, I started this modified geth client as a regular Ethereum node and listened to Whisper envelopes. Whenever a new envelope arrived from the test network, the WebSocket server broadcasted information about it to all connected clients. In this way, we were able to connect other programs that were lighting up LEDs depending on the number of new envelopes per second.

Ivan Danyliuk, Océane Boulais and Adam Babik. The three forces behind the Whisper Mailbox Interactivity

Wanqin Nong

Unity of Conflicts — a conceptual intervention // Core Concept: Opposite things can be harmonious.

Wanqin combined 9 unrelated fields — Physics, Biology, Astronomy, Computer Science, Economics, Art, Buddhism, Philosophy of the East & the West, Humanity, into ONE unified symbol — the Klein bottle. By projecting key visuals of the 9 fields onto the Klein bottle structure, Wanqin tried to demonstrate the concept: the structure is the beginning/the mother of the 9 fields; at the same time, it is the result/baby of the 9 fields.

Unity Of Conflicts. Proposal developed by Wanqin Nong.

Chris Bagley

I’ve been working on new version’s of video feedback loop’s for years now. This technique creates endless patterns with vibrant psychedelic color that never repeat.

Jessica Angel’s wall graphic worked with this setup seamlessly. The main elements used at ETHDenver were a camera and projector. I’m excited for all immersive art possibilities in the future!

Jessica Angel
Chris Bagley
Ethan Nunn

Current Call for a Makes Space in NYC. Deadline May 5th 2018
Info HERE

Special Thanks to ETHDenver participants and supporters:

Adam Babik
Brady McKenna
Chris Bagley
Chris Hutchinson
Emily Hunter
ETHDenver team of volunteers
Holly Chang
Ivan Danyliuk
Jane Hacker
Jason Teutsch
Jessica Angel
Justin Moskowitz
Karen Teutsch
Kelly LeValley
Lane Redding
Lindy Wilkins
Matt Condon
Océane Boulais
Rhys Lindmark
Richard Beer
Robbie Bent
Teri Minogue
Sina Habibian
Wanqin Nong