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Urban Kinetic Research Group

Urban Kinetic Research Group

Kinetica Artefacts

Urban Kinetic Research Group
Thames Valley University
Creative Campus Initiative

Ubermensch Bolt

Kinetic sculpture, Perspex, metal
Artists: Carol MacGillivray, Alex Misick, Laurence Misick

You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star - Nietzsche

Ubermensch Bolt plays with the interchangeability between the human and the mechanical and explores our perception of four-dimensionality allied to the theory of non-linear dynamics. Tiny increments in non-linear dynamics lets in Chaos: a system that is predictable in principle but unpredictable in practice. Non-Euclidean geometry demonstrates that the shortest route from one point to another in curved space is not a line.


Interactive work, metal thread and conductive cloth
Artist: Susan Thomason

Two layers of conductive fabric are stretched taught across a frame, analogous to skin stretched across a drum. The top fabric will be stenciled with sports graphics of the 2012 Paralympics. The piece involves an element of interaction; this will be in the form of weaving or sewing directly onto the stretched conductive fabric with conductive thread. Conductive fabric and thread comes in various shades of gold, copper and bronze and as contact is made, audio is created.


Audio-visual installation
Artists: Lucie Hernandez, Edwin Love

'Re:Play' explores the possibility of experiencing circuit racing, off-road racing or other selected competitive events from multiple perspectives. Presented as a mixed reality artefact, participants interact with terrain, routes and statistical data showing competitors progress over time. Information can be revisited and replayed through graphical trails mapped out in a visual representation, 'opened out' spatially and temporally.

Liquid Athletes 

Installation, mixed media and projection
Artists: Ryan Besty, Immo Blaese, Sally Butterfield, Panos Di, Nimra Javaid and Marcin Wysocki (MA Students at TVU)

A synthesized abstraction of the physical, psychological and external elements that are involved in the creation of the ultimate Olympic performance. A representation of a conversion and magnification of energy alongside the presence of diverse internal and external influences and pressures, resulting in an illuminated Olympic iconic image created using water and light.

Courbetin Commemorative Vase

(French, c1900, replica 2012)
Artists: Carol MacGillivray, Andrew Moller

Drawing on archive photographs and fragments found in an attic of the house of Henry Goodyear in Brooklyn, two academics have painstakingly recreated a replica of the Courbetin commemorative vase created for the second modern Olympics held in Paris in 1900. The vase draws on the contemporaneous cinematic techniques of the zoetrope to animate when rotated.

World Nation

Audio-visual installation
Artists: Olivier Ruellet and Paul Ramshaw

The work is informed by notions of social and philosophical deconstruction: shared meanings of culture, nationality and identity from representations of flags and anthems are deconstructed into formant parts of colours shapes and melodic and harmonic phrases -the deconstructions are intended to represent individuals as unifying (dynamic, kinetic) and influencing elements of vibrant humanity - a moving sound and visual scape of multi-coloured and multi-voiced- elements.


Artist: Phil Hawks

As part of a continuing body of visual research into the symbiotic and creative relationships between traditional life drawing and digital visualisations, Caryatid is an animated life drawing that demands interaction with its audience. Taking its primary inspiration from the Caryatid Porch of the Erechtheion in Athens the home of the Modern Olympics the work consists of a stack of six computer monitors each of which show a 180 degree traditionally drawn rotation of a life model. Each of the sections can be rotated individually with the audience able to control both the speed and direction of the rotation. Whilst not intended primarily as a structural form the final artwork at over 2.5 metres in height has a monumental feel to it in keeping with its historic associations.


Interactive performance and audio
Artists: Antonio Castells-Delgado and Sebastian Lexer

Sport is movement. Each sport has a different set of rules that define and condition both the athlete's own movements and how these movements interact with those of his competitors. The level of mastery of these movements will translate into either victory or defeat. Sound is movement. Sound is created by setting air into motion, creating air displacements which our hearing system translates into audio. Motus brings those two worlds together, sound and sport, both born from movement, and transforms athletes into musical instruments, matches or races or combats into live performances. Motus aims to create an interactive live fencing combat/performance where the movements of the fencer and his sabre, together with his opponents, will dictate the music.

Soft Bodies

Artist: Ian Grant

"Soft Bodies" is a collection of small kinetic and interactive objects that explore the global obesity epidemic alongside the Olympic effort. At the time of writing we have 100 days to collectively get in shape and take up an olympic sport, get fit and compete, or convert our current sporting prowess to another more desirable sport in order to compete for medals for Team UK in the 2012 Olympics. Using real-time 3D virtual simulations (of soft bodies) and the poetics of the fairground (throwing objects), digital artist Ian Grant explores the role of sugar, fat, food, sport, and kinetics (including secondary and tertiary body movements) in re-enacting moments of Olympic Greatness.