Each week we will be highlighting the artists for Digital Graffiti 2016. Join us and learn about these incredible artists from all over the world. This week, we’ve got Q&A’s with Tracy Miller-Robbins from Westerville, Ohio, and Olga Guse from Dresden, Germany.

Artist: Tracy Miller-Robbins
Current Residence: Westerville, Ohio
Website: tracymillerrobbins.com
Piece: Dots

Tracy Miller-Robbins

Have you participated in other projected art exhibitions? Where and how did location play into the work?
My experience with projected art has been with gallery-based projection installations. I was creating animated loops that were meant to exist in a space for the viewer and create a more intimate experience with the work.

I have also created site specific installations for the facade of the Museum of Contemporary Arts in Zagreb Croatia. This event takes place during Animafest Zagreb. The monitors run at night, on the front of the building, so those passing by the building can see the work.

Strange Neighbours, the projection piece I presented at Digital Graffiti last year, originated as a site specific three video triptych for the facade of the Museum in Zagreb. It hadn’t occurred to me to exhibit it in other places until Malcolm Turner, the director of the Melbourne International Animation Festival, contacted me about showing the work, in the animation installation program in Melbourne. For that installation and for Digital Graffiti, I reformatted the piece for the space. Since I have a tendency to not create linear, traditional narratives, site specific installations seem to be the best match for the work.

How much technology is required to create your work? If you didn’t have it, would you still be able to produce it?
I basically use a Mac laptop, Photoshop, After Effects, and a tablet monitor. If I didn’t have this, the work would change. As it is, I still continue to experiment both with traditional drawing, painting, and sculptural materials, as well as new digital tools and software.

I think the question for me is on growing the work and extending the work. I would love to have a projector to use for experimenting with projection mapping and the technology to program some interactive elements, as these are directions I plan on further exploring.

Give us examples of where you see projected art headed.
I see the work evolving based on the artist’s background. As a painter originally, I am exploring how the works can still have some of the same attributes of a painting, such as the viewer controlling the length of the viewing, and therefore engaging with the image in a more personal way. I also see projected art continuing to reflect the melting pot of the mediums that artists come to it from.

What do you find most remarkable about projected art?
The work is a more direct conversation with the audience or viewer. There is a bit more intimacy to the work when it is installed in a site. It also creates a situation where the viewer can determine the length of the viewing of the work.

What sparked your interest in digital art and how long have you been creating it?
I was originally trained as a painter, but I always knew I wanted my paintings to move. So my initial interest in digital art was sparked by the animations that were being created in the early nineties with 3D programs. At that point in time, they were painterly and fluid and abstract. As a painter, I was interested in what the digital aspect could add to my process, and initially I came into it as people were just starting to talk about interactivity.

In my graduate work, I created what were some of the first interactive multimedia, artistic CD-ROMs, exhibiting my first year project in the Netherlands along with the original Sim City at ISEA 93. There was this sense of making up the rules, and of the new frontier and not knowing what I didn’t know that gave this energy to those works. I started creating digital art in 1990 and created interactive computer based works for several years. A turning point for me was seeing William Kentridge’s animations at the Carnegie Biennial, installed as projections. There were so many things about that experience. These lush moving charcoal drawings, the messages in the works and of course, the intimacy of the projection. At that point I began experimenting with projection pieces and what could be created with more site specific works.

Artist: Olga Guse
Current Residence: Dresden, Germany
Website: olga-guse.wix.com
Piece: The Astronaut

Olga Guse

Have you participated in other projected art exhibitions? Where and how did location play into the work?
Yes, I have participated in following projected art exhibitions:

– Aurora Arts Festival (2015; Dallas, Texas)
– Facade Video Festival (2015; Plovdiv, Bulgaria)
– Digital Graffiti Festival at Alys Beach (2015; Alys Beach, Florida)

How much technology is required to create your work? If you didn’t have it, would you still be able to produce it?
I primarily use a photographic camera and a PC computer with software and materials for painting and sculpting. If I didn’t have these materials, I would not be able to produce the artwork.

What do you find most remarkable about projected art?
I think projected art is becoming the art of modern times and the future.

Have you or your works received awards or been covered elsewhere by media (newspaper, magazine, broadcast, etc.)?
Some of the art awards I have received include:

– INCUBARTE International Art Festival (2015; Valencia, Spain): Awarded from Centre d’ Art Contemporani Addaya
– A Film for Peace Festival (2015; Medea, Italy): Nominated for the Best Short Film: Recommended for Schools
– Digital Graffiti Festival at Alys Beach (2015; Alys Beach, United States): Honorable Mention

What sparked your interest in digital art and how long have you been creating it?
Since 2000, I have been creating digital art. That’s when I got my first computer and graphic software.