chris o’shea – “out of bounds”

Chris O’Shea’s ‘Out of Bounds’ installation allows people to see through walls. The experience is made convincing by the artist giving visitors an infrared torch in which to project onto the walls and interact with the work. This works by the software tracking the position of the IR emitter via an overhead security camera, and the whole thing is coded to make the impact realistic.

The software is coded in Open CV (an open-source computer vision library from Intel, in C++) and OpenFrameworks (a lightweight multimedia C++ framework for artists)


Chris O’Shea stated:

‘There is a childlike quality about wanting the ability to see through walls with x-ray vision like a superhero character. I want to encourage visitors to bore through the walls of the museum and engage in a ‘behind the scenes’ experience with an x-ray torch. This playful interaction encourages childlike curiosity in young and old alike, and opens up a portal into the Museum’s forbidden spaces.  Shine the torch at the wall to reveal the secrets hidden beneath. Pay an anonymous visit to the staff office, collection’s store, workshop, roof hatch or plant room.’

I like this idea, it involves the audience and creates an experience for which the viewer can take away from the gallery and savour.  Everyone at some point must has wished that they had some form of superhero power! (I know I have, I keep asking my girlfriend for ‘The Force’ for Christmas, but so far she hasn’t come through) This is a playful and fun installation, what a day that would be when (even though only virtually) you had the ability to see through walls! 



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January 2008
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