• Nyeleni Superville

UniBirds: Interactive Art

Disclosure AR presents UniBirds created on behalf of the Embassy of Colombia to the UK, it is an exhibition that explores the Universe of Colombian Birds. Located at the Moxy Hotel near the SECC it is currently running from the 2nd to the 7th December. The vibrant exhibition takes over the trendy lobby of this new West End hotel, changing the space that into an interactive bio-diverse experience that gives attendees a snippet of the wonderful wildlife of Columbia.

Columbia has one of the largest range of birds species in the world, hosting 1958 bird species it makes up 20% of all bird diversity. In a time of climate awareness, these sort of facts are surfacing and people are appreciating the natural world we live in. In lieu of this artists Sergio Mantilla, photographer and multi-media artist, and Miguel Chaparro designer have out together an collection of pieces focusing on these birds. They have collaborated to create a wonderful interactive experience to promote their countries biodiversity.

The artist worked with the Humboldt Biological Resources Research Institute to capture images and videos of birds in their natural habitat. Transposing bright colours and playing with the contrast of these images, the collaborations create lively and almost dreamlike images. By altering the images in such a way they take nature photography to a new level, creating images of nature that are strangely reminiscent of modern club life.

Each image is different and attuned to the artist interpretation of the birds themselves featuring images of owls, kingfishers and sparrows you are enlightened and intrigued by the alternative compositions and detail in each piece. The neon colours chosen are reminiscent of the pop-art style and Warhol's Marlin Diptych and Eight Elvis. You can see this in how Mantilla and Chaparro conflate flamboyant colours and occasionally overlap one image onto another, using layering and other techniques to make the pieces more significant.

This exhibition requires user participation to fully enjoy making, the participation aspect is simple but adds depth to the event making the exhibition even more engaging. UniBirds in uses an app called Artvive. All that is required is to hold your phone up to the images and the birds then come to life, bringing movement and life into the prints. It allows for a person to feel connected to the art, and allows the artists to show their skills with digital and interactive media.

The collaboration between the biological research center, interactive media and artistry summaries the exhibition's mission of conveying ''a message that preserving and protecting the biodiversity of species around the world is a responsibility of all.''

I would suggest a visit to this exhibition to get a taste of Colombian wildlife, it is definitely an experience one has to see to fully appreciate. I am excited to see what other projects these artist will produce in the future.


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