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Fleischmann, Monika; Strauss, Wolfgang
«Liquid Views: The Virtual Mirror of Narcissus»
In this interactive installation (collaborator Christian A. Bohn), a monitor equipped with a touch-screen and mini-camera simulates the surface of a body of water, which seems to reflect the viewer. When viewers near the surface (the image on the TV screen simulates ring-like currents in a pond), they see their own reflected image integrated within a virtual scene. When they touch the screen, as interactants they generate algorithmic, water sounds and waves, which then distort the viewer’s mirror image (the computer simultaneously alters in real-time morphing the appearance of the viewer’s image, recorded live by a mini-camera). An additional intervening of the viewer increases the distortion, and after not touching the surface for a while the image again becomes as calm as ‹water› and a ‹tranquil mirror.› In the background, the participant’s reflected face is reproduced on a large projection surface; in this way, the interactant’s ‹introverted› gaze is also seen by the spectators standing nearby. This mirror-and-TV-screen can be understood as an interface that connects the real with the virtual world, as an interplay of image within image.