Client: The Social Lights

When our friends at The Social Lights were opening a new office, they asked us to help create an installation to evoke discussion. We responded with mockingbird, a system that recreates Instagram photography in the style of famous artists and displays it on custom-built screens framed to resemble fine art hanging in their halls.

Each of the large gold frames conceals an LCD screen stripped of it's casing with a white matte, adding to the realistic fine art look. Tucked behind each screen, a Raspberry Pi running an openFrameworks application receives a notification when it's time to change the image it is displaying. A custom built, lightweight steel mounting bracket holds all of the parts together and allows for easy hanging.

A web service captures images from the Instagram accounts or hashtags selected in the admin web interface and schedules them for processing. They are then uploaded to a Nimbix server where the heavy task of recreating the image in a different style is offloaded to a GPU better suited for the job. After processing, the newly styled image is made eligible for display on one of the framed screens.