Science Centre Interplay - The Future Playground of Our Children

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Brought to you by Science Centre Singapore and ARS Electronica, Interplay is the local edition of Game Play.  It is a unique experiential exhibition where visitors will encounter installations by international and local artists that blend art, science and technology.

We had the opportunity to go to the exhibition yesterday and I agree with AJ that it was one of the best exhibitions we have gone to in Science Centre Singapore. We spent almost four hours there and he was still reluctant to leave. There are over 20 installations in Interplay, I will just highlight some notable ones. Do prepare to stay at least two hours to fully enjoy the exhibition.

1. Deep Space

Deep Space has two 2D and three 3D video presentations to keep the audience very entertained.  The three video presentations transit you from swimming with the fishes in the deep sea, to walking in outer space then to skiing on the snow mountain. All packed in into 30mins, both adults and children are sure to be glued to the screen.

Do take note of the screening time and work your visit around this, because this is a show you should not miss. And don’t forget to create your deep sea creature at the entrance first before show starts. You will get to see your very own creation swimming in the Deep Sea 3D video!

“It is very cool to see the fish that I have created at the entrance of the room swimming in the 3D aquarium! And we got to walk on Saturn’s rings, what an experience!” - AJ 

2. Digital Puppetry

Digital Puppetry is an interactive installation where visitors can alter their appearances in many playful ways. Standing in front of a screen, you will see yourself reflected as you are looking at a mirror. Then you use the luminous pink sticky notes available there to grab the various accessories floating on the screen and attach them anywhere on your bodies.  The floating accessories are attracted by bright colours like red or pink, so if you want to be a magnet, wear red or pink or have some patches of these colours on your clothes and these accessories will stick to you like glue!

3. Game Border

From Game & Watch of my time, to Xbox of AJ’s time, Game Border moves the game character from one game machine to another. 

If you are good at gaming, you will probably enjoy this game as it allows you to connect the borders of various machines and you get to play the game almost seamlessly from one machine to another.  If there is no casualty in the game, your game character will ‘walk out’ from Xbox and your scores, together with the highest score achieved will be displayed. 

AJ was extremely intrigued by the fact that the character of the game can transit from one machine to another.

4. Shadowgram

Your shadow stays with you, we all know.  This is probably the first time I have seen my shadow left behind. Standing in front of an illuminated background, your silhouette will be captured and printed out as stickers which you could paste onto the installation. How cool is that?

5. o.lhar

Looking into the holes set at various heights in this installation, your look will be captured as a sequence of photos and will be projected in the form of short videos.

6. Ideogenetic Machine

Ideogenetic Machine fulfills the desire of participants to become the heroes of their own comic book. Custom-made software captures the portraits of the participants and transforms them into “hand-drawn” comic book characters. These characters are then integrated into backgrounds drawn by the artist. At the end of each session, you can email a PDF version of your comics to yourself!

7. Recollection Six

Recollection Six is an interactive installation that invites you to move in front of a large video screen.  As you move, your image will be recorded by a video camera and passed on to a computer with special image processing capabilities. It is a hit among the kids because it gives an unforgettable experience that teaches them about colour, form, movement, and computer graphics.

8. Temporal Distortion

Temporal Distortion is a five-screen video installation that captures and warps, in real time, the movements you make. You are encouraged to move from one screen to the next, and enjoy the changing distortion of your images.

This installation uses modern computers and high definition cameras to attain a new level of quality and control over the “speed of light” of the individual reflected pixels making up the captured video image.

9. Sandbox Ocean

This is an excellent sensory activity. Instead of digging sand in the beach, the children (adults can too) dig into the sand here in Interplay, shift it around and pile it up into new mounds. The lights above the installation senses the distance between the lights and the terrain and determine the colours to be displayed onto the sand. So the peaks will be yellow or green while the trough will be dark blue, resembling mountains and ocean.  Wave your hands vigorously above the ‘ocean’ and you will see a variety of sea creatures being formed.

10. Earth Patrol

Earth Patrol is a multiplayer shooting game in a full-dome format. This is any time better than playing an arcade game in Time Zone, especially when you lie down on the floor, you’ll experience a very real 3D effect.  You basically use the laser blasters provided to shoot hostile creatures which seek to destroy the Earth.

11. AR-Muse

AR-muse is an Augmented Realty (AR) application to augment learning in museums. By using natural feature tracking techniques, AR-muse enables artists and curators to digitally enhance their artworks with AR technology in order to bring them to life. Through the use of the AR-muse magic-lens app on smartphones and tablets, you will be able to see these AR enhancements.

You can also download this app first before you visit interplay exhibition so that you can use your smartphones to view the artworks. Just go to playstore and key in ‘AR-muse: Project Dandelion’.

12. Kinetic Light Sculpture

In this installation, a visual medley of light and motion is presented by shining light onto a rapidly rotating piece of rope that is attached to two fixed points.

Once set in motion, the vibrating rope becomes invisible to the human eye, while the colours from the chromastrobe are revealed in rapid succession as it reflects off the rope in a range of colours.

13. Frozen Shadow

Leave your shadow behind! Unlike Shadowgram, Frozen Shadow does not allow you to print your shadow sticker, however, in this installation, you will leave your shadow(s) behind (temporarily) on the wall you lean against.

14. Graffiti Wall

This is probably the only legal way to express your creativity on public walls! You can go as crazy or creative, as you want!

15. Whippy-Wavy

The principle of how this interactive installation works is pretty much the same as Kinetic Light Sculpture. The multi-coloured strobes flash at high frequencies, creating a kaleidoscopic effect when the light bounces off objects in motion.

In my opinion, the Interplay is one exhibition that is really worth going to.  In this digital era, this is likely how our children's playground will evolve to be. Here are the exhibition details: 

Date: 30 May to 16 Aug 2015
Venue: Science Centre Singapore, Annexe Hall
Time: 10am to 6pm
Ticket: Adult $13; Child (3-12YO) $9; Student $9; Family Package (2 adults 2 children) $36


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