Digital Arts news everyday, and a full magazine every quarter
Tous les jours, l'actualité des arts numériques, et tous les trois mois, un magazine complet
View My Blog
Send me a message
Lire le dernier numéro
The latest Digitalarti Mag is coming soon in english.
Report at Scopitone festival, digital art & electronic music festival in Nantes, France
rAndom International @ Carpenters Workshop gallery, Paris
Innovations in Paris: Futur en Seine
Capture, by Gregory Chatonsky, presented in Paris
[Call for project] Borders
Digitalarti Mag #13
[Interview] Peter Weibel, director of ZKM
Ars Electronica Price 2013 : and the winners are...
[agenda] Nancy celebrates Renaissance
A trap made of light : Isotopes by Nonotak Studio
[exhibition] Digital Africa
[Exhibition] Water Light Graffiti @ Stereolux
[Festival] Parizone@dream 2013
More blog entries
[Wat?], abbreviation of "Who Are They?, We Are Trafik, Who Are Trafik?" is the title of the latest solo exhibition by the Trafik collective(1). [Trafik] of signs, letters, paper, pictograms, typographies, pixels, fonts, colours, LED(2), the graphic design agency, set up in Lyon at the end of the 1990s, is asserting its style and circulating the light between New York, Rennes and Taipei. Responding to the rigorous constraints of traditional graphic design, its creative proposal force is increasing with the power of virtual tools and interaction with the public. Between architecture, fine arts and new technologies, "[VS]"(3), Trafik’s latest piece, is redefining the limits of perceptible space, together with the Saazs laboratory for research and creation(4).
Collective strategy and global communication
15 years ago, the Rodière brothers, an artistic director and an encoder, choose Lyon for its quality of life, and there, together with school friends, they set up a graphic design agency, focused on visual identity: it is about the pleasure of drawing the symbol that defines a brand, creating its logo, choosing the right proportions, a colour, a font, a quality of paper… The design of the website then becomes obvious. The studio made a full use of the space and developed the multimedia aspect through light installations and interface design, thus creating new perspectives in the fields of architecture and space design. Prospective projects cannot be developed out of frustration, but a visual approach born out of constraints is what feeds our reflection, reassesses Pierre, the artistic director.
When Pierre Giner, curator of Muséogames, asked them to create the visual identity of the exhibition held at the Musée des Arts et Métiers in Paris (2010), Trafik responded with an extensive communication package: a website, a brochure, a mini catalogue, and here you are! A new font, a poster, a mascot and an iphone application … The studiothen suggested that the entrance of the exhibition should be made of graphic design and light: in the darkness of a night club, a time line made out of screens fixed on the wall - video games from 1958 to 2001 - overlooks a black lacquered central table where visitors
can sit down and play.
Colour dots, pictograms and public
To respond to a commission, go beyond it and sometimes anticipate it, meeting the right people: this is what Trafik did in proposing Marithé + François Girbaud, in 2006, a light installation based on projected images and colour dots controlled via luminescent diodes, for their men catwalk show. The same year, Jérôme Delormas(5), then working at the Ferme du Buisson gave them carte blanche to use the space of the art centre (700 m2) where other designers had been invited to move the boundaries between design and artistic experimentation. There, Trafik designed a kind of pictoplasma creature, inquisitive about the public and disappearing from one room to another through a screen.
It is the very little red mole one hopes to find in 2013, in the second tunnel of the Croix Rousse in Lyon, dedicated to "soft" circulation: invited by the architect, together with two other digital designers (Miguel Chevalier and Pierre Giner), the Lyon studio has worked on a 2 km underground path: how to attract the interest of pedestrians, cyclists or “trolleybus” users?
Anima, our little character, lives in the tunnel, which is his den, he moves in it. You can call him up with your laptop, arrange a meeting, change his colour… Here, the digital media is fulfilling its role, underlines Pierre Rodière, it allows to make a full use of a building, to give life to it and transform it.
And this can even be done remotely. You can produce an event from home, choose the place and time of its presentation but not necessarily be there. This is the basis of the virtual media isn’t it?
Voici ONI is a recent interactive piece developed with the “1%” (French public art scheme) for Le Liberté, in Rennes. It consists in creating one’s own pattern online, which will then be shown through
a panel of luminescent diodes placed in the hall of the performance venue, at a date and time you selected. In addition, ONI, which stands for Objet Numérique Immortel (immortal digital object) offers you two random dates in 2014 and 2020. Have a go on www.voicioni.org! Trafik favours participatory projects and has done so for years.
As mischievous designers, they are also curious to see how the public appropriates these things: as early as the year 2000 the studio developed an online collective cre-ative module composed of ten by twelve dots. In deciding to turn the dots on or off, users created symbols. From more than 3000 pictograms proposed by Internet users, Trafik, selected 213, together with their authors’ names, and created a font kept in a Signotek, that can be downloaded at: www.dafont.com/fr/signotek.font
We started by producing real-time applications that worked with the screen, and then we broke out of the frame. From designing the store window displays of Habitat in Paris or Louis Vuitton on the Fifth Avenue (2005), to the production of a 3x3m sonic cube for Grame (national centre of musical creation), an exhibition in Taipei and the design of an interactive ceiling for the lobby of the Morgans Hotel in New York, Trafik has multiplied multimedia projects over the last five years, blessed by 2000 stars of Superluxe, one of its first applications.
Initially created for the Fête des Lumières in Lyon, this ephemeral work, which projects video words composed of stars, radiated the screen (in a controlled explosion) installed on the Credit Municipal building during the 2007 Nuit Blanche in Paris. Upon discovering this piece, Cyril Putman commissioned Trafik to create of a website; a few months later, Andrée Putman, the undisputable queen of refinement and pure lines asked the studio to make "an artistic gesture" for the ceiling of the hotel with the famous checkerboard patterns. Trafik mounted 4000 LEDs controlled by a sophisticated interface allowing visitors to redesign in real time, the ceiling of the hotel.
When light became controllable in real time, we entered another dimension. Demonstrating a partiality towards light, Trafik very quickly understood the opportunities offered by such a material as the LED:
it is both about the light and the screen, a 3D surface that can be deployed or fragmented within space. When you select a diode or a pitch (the distance between two LEDs) it clearly impacts on the graphic production. In the same way that there is no noble support or bad typography, it is by starting with a technology and its constraints that Trafik responds…
Versus [VS] is an installation resulting from the studio encountering interactive glasses research led by Quantum Glass ™(6).
Here it produces the effect of a quantum leap: the visitor enters a black box, a vortex made up of five glass and light aligned structures; five frames made of glass LED, which are infinitely reflected into two oneway mirrors. At both ends of this immersive architecture two electronic pads are used to endlessly modulate the perception of space, playing with the light, transparency and sound(7). [VS] is a sensory experience in itself, a re-definition of architecture though light and design.
(1) Anatome Gallery, 38 rue Sedaine, Paris 11th.
(2) Lumiscent Electronic Diode (DEL in French).
In the (French) live events professional jargon, it is
referred more generally as "LED" as if it was a material.
(3) [VS] pronounced “Versus”, has being shown since
June 2011 at the Glass House, 4 passage Sainte Avoye,
Paris 3rd. Info: www.aglasshouse-paris.com
(4) SAAZS, is a laboratory for creation and promotion of
design that combines leading edge technology, poetry,
ecological tendencies and architectural thinking.
(5) Jérôme Delormas, current Director of the Gaité
Lyrique in Paris, invited Trafik to present 72 / 180 °,
a light architecture initially designed for the Nuits
Sonores in Lyon, to the opening of the site in 2011.
(6) Quantum Glass™, a subsidiary branch of Saint
Gobain dedicated to the research and development of
active glasses. Info: www.quantumglass.com
(7) Interactive sound loops designed by Maize, (third of
the six Rodière brothers) mysteriously increased the
immersive effect of the work, seen here as a simulation of
the quantum world.
Published in the Digitalarti Mag #8.
Digitalarti Mag, the international digital art and innovation magazine.
Read the magazine for free online.
anne cecile worms ARTIST, ARTWORK dm_artist I. P. C. Jason Cook MATÉO mathieu lehanneur Object Avatar Peter William Holden surrealist trafik by
More information about formatting options