i Spy (people in motion)

iSpy is a game. A game which can be played within the exhibition space or outside the exhibition space. Identify animated characters from the game board and score points. Score points and win while walking down the street observing the 'woman with Shopping Bags' or the 'man on a Skatebboard'. We each participate daily in such interventions. The exhibition is a series of stations which 'contain' actions. 'peopleInMotion'
iSpy (people in motion) is part of a series of digital animations and installations which began with the digital animation strobingMuybridge in which a digital version of the Muybridge photograph "Galloping Horse" was downloaded from the Internet. The individual frames were redrawn by cutting out the positive figure (horse and rider) and placing it on a solid color background (rotoscoping). These images were then reworked as white on black and black on white frames. 'exhibition photo'
When these individual frames were interspersed at specific frame rates, the resulting animation revealed a glowing, strobing effect. strobingMuybridge was exhibited in 2001 in the exhibition "Horse Tales" at the Katonah Museum (NY). Several other animations were created for this exhibiton which also utilized rotoscoping redrawn frames captured from movies including hiyoSilver which was sampled from a Lone Ranger movie. 'exhibition photo'
Subsequent installations in 2002 - 03 featured animations using other Muybridge works. These works varied frame rate and frame order while utilizing rotoscoping and color keying to turn Muybridge's traditional motion studies into herky-jerky, spasmodic sequences. Following that I began to create contemporary motion studies from my own original video as well as from movie and television sources. 'spinners'
An example of this type of work, man on a water jetski, was exhibited at the Brooklyn Museum in the exhibition "Open House"(2004). A man riding a water jetski circled endlessly (and aimlessly) on a yellow sea. The animation was played back on 1.8" lcd monitors sitting on porcelain soap dishes. Several wall installations followed including exhibitions at Scope New York 2005 and Photo SF 2005. These works were video wall installations in which the small lcd panels were sewn to curtains or hung on strings from the wall while playing animations from dvd players on the floor. 'daisyChain'
The video installation becomes a wall drawing. Wires, extension cords, video cables, disassembled lcd monitors, electrical boxes and dvd players were spread across the wall. A non-automatic writing. The electrical connections to the imaging devices became the lines of the composition. 1.8", 2.5", 4" and 6.8" lcd monitors were strewn about. 'exercise18'
The first installation as wall drawing was humanLocomotion_la. It was exhibited in Los Angeles at Fringe exhibitions (2006). The lcd monitors played animations which were originally sampled from movies whose plot was centered in LA. Each monitor flashed a digital video animation featuring a single character performing a sequence of motions. The figures were isolated 'actors' extracted from movie dvd's. Several seconds of action were cut out from the seamless flow. The figures were rotoscoped, redrawn then reanimated. 'greenfield' video excerpt
The reified figures echoed their filmic past while populating a new environment. iSpy (people in motion) is a sequel to this work but in this case all the animations save one were created from original video shot in Brooklyn and Manhattan. The characters are the inhabitants of the city performing daily activities, working, anonymous. Individual frames from short sequences of activity were chosen to create the repetitive actions which become the contemporary motion studies. 'spinners'

iSpy video excerpts

Ray Rapp ArtPapers.org, Jody Zellen


Exhibitions 2001 - 2008