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Blog: Art

The Invisible Artist Layer Guides You Through London’s Art Museums

Adriane Goetz February 15, 2011

Perusing London’s wide array of art museums, a personal tour guide is the ultimate way to augment your experience; so when a charming British artist dandified in a variety of custom suits appears before you at each of London’s top museums offering commentary about its history and architecture as well as a list of exhibiting artists, you find his “presence” pleasant and helpful despite his disarming lack of flesh and bone. 

As you progress from museum to museum, however, you begin to question this “invisible artist’s” motives. 

Artist and Derby University professor John Goto came up with the concept for The Invisible Artist in a period of frustration after being dropped from a gallery’s books. Ruminating over the politics of the art world, where an artist’s visibility requires the approval of a small group of “gatekeepers,” Goto began sketching the headless figures that would eventually become the 3D models in his Invisible Artist layer.

The nature of Goto’s frustration fit perfectly with Augmented Reality’s open space platform because Goto could place his art at any location—or in this case, at any museum he desired, without permission, and anyone (with the Layar app, that is) could see it. The result was a subversive layer satirizing the bureaucracy and lack of diversity of London’s contemporary art scene (notice how the list of exhibiting artists contains the same few names at every museum).

While its derisive nature is clever, the “must-see” factor in this layer is its exquisite 3D modeling. Peering through your mobile phone at these life-sized figures, you can see the shadow behind every fold in the artist’s clothing, the texture of each material, and the soft glow of London’s cloudy sky gently reflected off of each garment.

The Invisible Artist is an excellent example of what can be achieved on the Layar platform with the right combination of skills in the artistic as well as the technical fields. In order to build this layer, Goto utilized his artistic talent to create the 3D models, then colleague Matthew Leach (from whom Goto first learned about Augmented Reality) used his development skills to set up a server, place the models, and program functionality to make for the best possible user experience.

The Invisible Artist is Goto and Leach’s second layer in their Augmented Reality repertoire; their first, West End Blues, explores the history and sounds of London’s jazz and blues musicians. The two have recently become Pioneers in the Layar Partner Network, and you can look forward to more groundbreaking AR content from them in the future.


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Andy Warhol museum releases Warhol Layar

Redactie October 14, 2010

Another great example of Layar being used by the art scene. Last week the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, USA, released the Warhol Layar.

The Warhol Layar enables you to view points of interest pivotal in Andy Warhol’s life and work. You’ll find locations in Pittsburgh and New York. The Warhol Layar also provides rare and premium content prepared by The Warhol’s education curators.

Layer: Warhol
Location: Pittsburgh & New York City
Required: iPhone or Android device
More info:
Brunner Mobile


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Uninvited DIY exhibition at MoMA NYC

Redactie October 8, 2010

On Saturday October 9th, the physical space inside the MoMA building in New York will host a virtual exhibition, based on Augmented Reality technology. The show will not be visible to regular visitors of the MoMA, but those using the “Layar Augmented Reality browser” on their iPhone or Android smartphones, will see numerous additional works on each of the floors.

The experimental unofficial exhibition is part of the Conflux Festival, the annual New York festival dedicated to the psychogeography practice. With the exhibition, the organisers of the event aim to address a contemporary issue, caused by the rapid rise of Augmented Reality usage. What is the impact of AR on our public and private spaces? Is the distinction between the two fading, or are we approaching a situation with an increasing fragmentation of space and realities to be perceived individually?

The exhibition is organised by Sander Veenhof, augmented reality experimentalist from the Netherlands, and the New York based new media artist Mark Skwarek. Both artists share a common fascination for hybrid collaborations between virtual and physical entities.

Augmented reality artists worldwide were invited to showcase their work in the MoMA. Sander & Mark curated the exhibition. By the way, the MoMA is not involved in this yet. But that’s not a requirement anymore anno 2010, being independent and working in augmented reality.

Event: DIY Augmented Reality exhibition - MoMA, New York
Opening: 4PM October 9th 2010
Location: MoMA, NY - floors 1 to 6 + virtual floors 7 & 8 + garden
Required: iPhone or Android device
Developers:  Sander VeenhofMark Skwarek
More info about the festival:
About the exhibition:


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Amazing Augmented Reality Art in Layar

Maarten Lens-FitzGerald June 29, 2010

A project at the MediaLAB for the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam resulted in some amazing art work in Augmented Reality. We said it before and we’ll say it again: you can create ANYTHING in Augmented Reality. Augmented Reality is the biggest canvas you can work with. These artists know this already.


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32 new layers launched; Get inspired by “Art & Culture” layers

Redactie March 29, 2010

32 new layers have been launched recently. Amongst them a couple of “Art & Culture” layers, which makes you enjoy virtual art in Layar or helps you to find art around you. We talked to Alex Young from MOB (Mobile Online Business Pty Ltd), who developed the Sculpture by the Sea layer in Australia in 2009 and with Russell JVM Gutierrez from flippingNORMALS (Hong Kong Art walk 2010 layer) and Christian Meinhardt from Superimpose (WTC and Virtual Public Art Project layers), who launched art layers recently.

What inspired you to develop these layers? Christian: “It is all about the perception of reality, it is about adding layers of abstraction as well as visible information to our surroundings and thereby enhancing our understanding of the world. A great aspect of this is to show realities that have been or that could be, as in the WTC layer project that brings back a reality that does not exist anymore. But you can go even further and think about creating additional or parallel realities existing on top of our common reality. That is an aspect you will find in the VPAP [Virtual Publik Art Project] layer project, here we offer artists the possibility to create new kinds of realities, that allow us to see the world through the eyes of the artist, thereby redefining it.
Russel: “We have always been tuned in to AR in general and Layar in particular. In Hong Kong, there is a noticeable lack of local layers, which is odd since there are a variety of interesting sites and events always going on - from traditional shrines to places where you can watch football live in the early hours of the morning.” Alex: “When we started working on the Layar platform we felt it was a perfect fit for the Bondi 2009 exhibition (outdoor and set along 2.5km of coastline around the iconic Bondi Beach in Sydney). The layer showed people where the Public Facilities such as toilets, bus stops and cafe’s were as well as providing detailed information on sculptures from a set of the exhibiting artists.”
What does the layer bring the user? And what is crucial for an optimal experience? Christian: “Layar, in particular using its new 3d functions offers us a fantastic tool to explore these ideas and make them accessible to a global audience.” Russel: “The Art Walk naturally springs to mind. There are several participating galleries this year, most of them clustered around the Central, SOHO and Sheung Wan areas. The whole concept of the Art Walk is to encourage users to visit these galleries in one night to see the art and meet other people over drinks. The layer makes it easier to find these galleries, specially those that are not on the main path.” Alex: “At first we only wanted to display information relating to a sub-set of the works, as the printed Catalog (sold on-site) is a revenue source for the Sculpture by the Sea organization. The launch of the Layar App Store will provide a great opportunity to extend the layer, as people could choose to purchase the layer (as a Catalog) as an alternative to the printed version. The layer brings the opportunity to literally have a “catalog in their pocket”.
Who made the art objects visible in the layer (and what does a such a layer mean for the artists)? Christian: “The Virtual Public Art Project (VPAP) was initiated by US-based artist Chris Manzione and realized in cooperation with Superimpose. Starting with an inaugural exhibition of works shown on 14 locations around the globe more artists and artworks will be added over the coming months.”
The artist [Chris Manzione]: “Different than most other AR applications that look out into the world for information, VPAP interests lie in looking inward, onto an object. Another key element of our layar is that the objects are site-specific. This is different than most other digital media that can be easily transfered and shared. This requires the users presence and interaction with the site itself. Also being site-specific and with non of the limitations that physical artworks carry gives these artworks a context never seen before.” Alex: “Independent artists from Australia and around the world created the sculptures. Ideally it would be great to work with some of the artists who create 3D models of their works prior to creating them so we could use these as the Points of Interest icons for their works.”
Any other thoughts, idea’s or things you’d like to share? Christian: “I am really exited to announce another layar project of this kind coming from us soon.. For now I can’t tell you more, it is still secret…” Russel: “AR has a big potential in Hong Kong (HK), though not a lot of developers and companies here are taking advantage of it yet. iPhone (and more recently, Android phones) have a high penetration rate of the mobile market in HK so a lot of people potentially have access to the Layar app. One of our main goals is to first increase the visibility of AR in HK, and the only way to do that is to build more interesting layers. One of the next exciting projects we are looking to do involve mapping the street and graffiti art in HK and building a layer on top of that.”
Alex: “Art & Culture” layers are a great way to provide information to people in an accessible way.  It opens up and enriches the cities and landscapes that we live in. We are currently working with the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney to create a layer that uses historical photos of Sydney and overlays them onto the modern environment.  This will open up the history of Sydney to everyone wherever they are within the city.  We hope that it will lead to more interest by people to explore their culture and cities in more depth.” All newest launched layers: WTC- New York, US Virtual Public Art Project - international HK Art Walk 2010 - Hong Kong Hotels Now! - international UPCOMING - international AroundTown R’dam (Game) - Rotterdam, Netherlands AppAware for Layar - international Explore South Africa - South Africa House Detective - Germany, Italy, Spain, UK SA Golf Courses - South Africa Second Cup locator - Bahrain, Canada, Egypt, Jordan, Oman ,Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates 横浜観光案内 - Yokohama, Japan Urban Walkabout - Sidney, Australia 『今から』泊まれる宿検索 - Japan Stelling van Amsterdam - Amsterdam, Netherlands Bath Pub Guide - Bath, UK Political Party Time - US Project Noah - international Dutch Highschools - Netherlands Tilburg University - Tilburg, Netherlands Se salgspriser for danske ejendomme - Denmark NWS NEXRAD Level 3 Storm Attributes - Iowa, US קניונים בישראל - Israel בנקים בישראל - Israel MyCosmik Supplies: WiFi hotspots and SIM cards - international Find a Property - UK 不動産アーカイブ検索 - Next - Japan Aviones LocalizaTodo - Portugal, Spain YMCA Old Valletta -Malta Hot Spots Katowice - Katowice, Poland GipuzkoaMarket - Gipuzkoa (province in Basque country), Spain Discover Shropshire - Shrewsbury, UK Please open this post to see screenshots and descriptions of all layers. WTC Description: World Trade Center New York virtual memorial. This is a virtual memorial to the WTC World Trade Center on location in New York as it was present from 1971 to September 11, 2001. Geographical spread: WTC, New York, US Developer: Christian Meinhardt Developer Company: Superimpose Virtual Public Art Project Description: An Augmented Reality platform for the public display of digital works of art. Geographical spread: international Developer: Christian Meinhardt Developer Company: Superimpose HK Art Walk 2010 Description: List of participating galleries for the Hong Kong Art Walk 2010 - Hong Kong’s premier charity art event - will be held on Wednesday, 17 March 2010 between 5pm to 12midnight. For more information, see Geographical spread: Hong Kong Developer: Russell Gutierrez Developer Company: flippingNORMALS Hotels Now! (English & Deutsch) Description: Displays the available hotels in your area. See and book: By map, list or with the camera of your mobile phone. Easy and fast: Check price, location and amenities. Book the hotel of your choice for the best price directly with your mobile phone. Your benefits: # Direct availability, even at the last minute # Free booking - even without a credit card # Payment at the hotel # Free to cancel until 6pm on day of arrival Geographical spread: international Developer: Andreas Nöthen Developer Company: HRS Hotel Reservation ServiceDeveloper UPCOMING Description: Upcoming events & things to do. Geographical spread: international Developer: Pablo Garcia Developer Company: ELIPSE AD AroundTown R’dam - Game Description: Op zoek naar de ultieme stadsbelevenis? CityTour & CityGame. Deze AroundTown Layar biedt je een unieke belevenis van Rotterdam centrum. Speel ook de CityGame en maak kans op een orginele chopperbike van Nirve twv € 850,00 ! Geographical spread: Rotterdam, Netherlands Developer: Victor van Rijn Developer Company: MediaMedics AppAware for Layar Description: What are people around you installing on Android phones? AppAware shares online your installations, updates and removals of Android applications. In this way you become aware (App-Aware) of what other users are installing on their Android phones right now and around you! Please visit: Keywords: appaware, application, android, phone, mobile, eth, zurich Geographical spread: international Developer: Andrea Girardello Developer Company: Information Management Explore South Africa Description: Comprehensive augmented reality guide to South Africa. Geographical spread: South Africa Developer: Feroz Osman-Latib Developer Company: WebFive Media House Detective Description: Investigate houses for sale or rent nearby. The House Detective will find details of any houses for sale or rent around you, showing the price, number of bedrooms and other distinguishing features. The search results are powered by Geographical spread: Germany, Italy, Spain, UK Developer: Alex Tucker Developer Company: Alex Tucker SA Golf Courses Description: 500+ golf courses throughout South Africa with course detail. This layer gives you the location of golf courses throughout South Africa. Premium listings include a detailed description of the course as well as a AR view of the course that shows distance and direction to the green, water hazards and sand bunkers. Geographical spread: South Africa Developer: Feroz Osman-Latib Developer Company: WebFive Media Second Cup locator Description: Second Cup is Canada’s largest specialty coffee café franchisor. Since its inception, Second Cup has grown to more than 340 cafés across Canada and over 50 cafés internationally. Geographical spread: Bahrain, Canada, Egypt, Jordan, Oman ,Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates Developer: Mathijs Gajentaan Developer Company: Winvolve 横浜観光案内 - yokohama Description: 横浜近郊の観光スポットをご案内いたします。 Detail Description: Yokohama Station, and tourist facilities in the heart of Yokohama Minato Mirai area, tourist attractions, you can find information such as the cruise ship. Provides a link to the homepage of each facility. Geographical spread: Yokohama, Japan Developer: Shinichi Wakasugi Developer Company: atWare, Inc Urban Walkabout Description: Fashion, design & lifestyle in Sydney. In addition to this layer, Urban Walkabout publishes and the Urban Walkabout Sydney Shopping Guides, a series of carefully designed Geographical spread: Sidney, Australia Developer: Rob Manson Developer Company: MOB (Mobile Online Business Pty Ltd) 『今から』泊まれる宿検索 Description: 現在、空室がある宿泊施設が検索できます。; accommodation search (hotels, lodging and tourist resorts) Geographical spread: Japan Developer: Shinichi Wakasugi Developer Company: atWare, Inc Stelling van Amsterdam Description: De Stelling van Amsterdam is een 135 km lange verdedigingskring op 15-20 km rond de hoofdstad Amsterdam Geographical spread: Amsterdam, Netherlands Developer: Mike van Drongelen Developer Company: yellowpond Bath Pub Guide Description: Find your way around the pubs of Bath Geographical spread: Bath, UK Developer: Paul Lewis Developer Company: Media Grand UK Ltd Political Party Time Description: Discover nearby political fundraisers. Layar showing all venues hosting political fundraisers as gathered by Find out where your legislators are mingling with lobbyists. Clicking on a venue will show the latest party there as well as a link to the site to see all parties that have been held at the venue. Geographical spread: US Developer: James Turk Developer Company: Sunlight Labs Project Noah Description: Wildlife sightings from Project Noah Geographical spread: international Developer: Martin Ceperley Developer Company: Emergence Studios Dutch Highschools Description: Alle locaties van 15 grote hogescholen in Nederland Geographical spread: Netherlands Developer: Yori Hak Developer Company: Yworks Tilburg University Description: Tilburg University layar with Points of Interests for students. This layar contains al buildings at the campus, lunch rooms, bars and other interesting locations. Geographical spread: Tilburg, Netherlands Developer: Koen Driessen Developer Company: Tilburg University Se salgspriser for danske ejendomme Description: Se salgspriser for ejendomme i Danmark indenfor kategorierne Ejerlejlighed, Villa, Rækkehus, Fritid og Erhverv. See selling prices of properties in Denmark in the categories Apartment, Villa, Townhouse, Leisure and Business. You can see what a property is sold, commenced sales, and much more. Geographical spread: Denmark Developer: Pimin Konstantin Balic Kefaloukos Developer Company: Grontmij | Carl Bro NWS NEXRAD Level 3 Storm Attributes Description: IEM (Iowa Environmental Mesonet of Iowa State University) provided summary of National Weather Service NEXRAD level 3 storm attributetable. Processes a feed of National Weather Service NEXRAD information in near realtime. The storm attribute tables from the NEXRAD are processed and served via this service. Data is provided as-is and without warranty. Geographical spread: Iowa, US Developer: Daryl Herzmann Developer Company: Iowa State University קניונים בישראל Description: השכבה מציגה את הקניונים הנמצאים בישראל, ומאפשרת מידע לגביהם. [This layers finds shopping malls] Geographical spread: Israel Developer: Dubi Finger Developer Company: Tapuz Mobile בנקים בישראל Description: השכבה מציגה בנקים בכל רחבי הארץ; shows banks across the country Geographical spread: Israel Developer: Dubi Finger Developer Company: Tapuz Mobile MyCosmik Supplies: WiFi hotspots and SIM cards Description: Over 12,000 WiFi hotspots and SIM card resellers that can be used with MyCosmik. MyCosmik’s Value-Roaming is a free piece of software that you download to your mobile phone. It saves you over 75% on mobile calls while abroad and on international calls while at home. Geographical spread: international Developer: William Hill Developer Company: Devicom AB Find a Property Description: Search property for sale, find houses and flats to rent. Powered by Nestoria. Geographical spread: UK Developer: Howard Ogden Developer Company: 不動産アーカイブ検索 - Next Description: HOME’S不動産アーカイブ - ‘Next’ is one of the largest real estate companies in Japan. Geographical spread: Japan Aviones LocalizaTodo Description: Muestra los aviones de LocalizaTodo Geographical spread: Portugal, Spain Developer: Tomas Escartin Developer Company: LocalizaTodo YMCA Old Valletta Description: See buildings of old Valetta as they used to look like Geographical spread: Malta Developer: Jeroen Meijer Developer Company: Hot Spots Katowice Short Description: Search for Hot Spots in Katowice center. Geographical spread: Katowice, Poland Developer: Tomasz Kacała Developer Company: MBT Media GipuzkoaMarket Description: Gipuzkoa Market, el escaparate donde encontrarás todos los productos y servicios de Gipuzkoa Geographical spread: Gipuzkoa (province in Basque country), Spain Developer: karlos g liberal Developer Company: investic s.l Discover Shropshire Description: Discover the history and environment of Shropshire. This Layar is part of the 1630 Panorama exhibition at Rowleys House, Shrewsbury Geographical spread: Shropshire, Shrewsbury, UK Developer: James Grimster Developer Company: Orangeleaf Systems Ltd


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