Concordia's 3-D innovation revolutionizes visual art

Jun 04, 2012
This is an image from Chorus of Lungs, an interactive 3-D installation by Leila Sujir, associate professor of Studio Arts, and Maria Lantin, presently a visiting scholar in the Department Computer and Software Engineering, as well as at the and Hexagram Institute of Research Creation of Media Arts and Technologies. Credit: Leila Sujir and Maria Lantin

What happens when visual art comes into close contact with computer science? Stereoscopic magic.

Concordia University's Leila Sujir and Sudhir Mudur are bringing into new territories. With a generous grant from Quebec's Consortium en numérique and Mitacs, the two professors, along with Maria Lantin from Emily Carr University of Art + Design in Vancouver, are completing a year-long project to develop 3D drawing tools for a system known as Sandde.

Sandde, short for "stereoscopic animation drawing device," is a unique 3D animation software from the Montreal-based Janro Imaging Lab (JIL) that allows the animator artist to work intuitively by literally drawing in thin air. That action of free-hand 3D drawing was the research focus for Sujir, Mudur and Lantin, who are working with graduate students to create low cost, high performance motion-tracking solutions.

JIL, the maker of the software, is working closely with professors and graduate students in Concordia's Department of and Software Engineering, as well as the Department of Studio Arts, to develop the user interface and hardware interface components of the software.

The researchers aim to bring Sandde to a point where it can potentially revolutionize video game design, performance art, and even Hollywood's 3D feature animations. By facilitating the free movement of artists as they add 3D layers to their work, this research returns physicality to the process of digital content-creation.

The fruits of this labour can be seen on display at Montreal's Studio XX gallery, located at 4001 Berri Street, through June 5. The Distance Between is an inter-generational, all-female exhibition of 3D work that showcases a variety of creative approaches made possible using stereoscopic imaging tools like Sandde.

The show features Chorus of Lungs, an interactive 3D installation by Sujir, associate professor of Studio Arts, and Lantin, presently a visiting scholar in the Department Computer and Software Engineering, as well as at the and Hexagram Institute of Research Creation of Media Arts and Technologies.

The exhibition includes 3D work by Alison Loader (MA candidate, Communications Studies); Rebecca St. John, (animation student, Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema); and Emily Pelstring (MFA Studio Arts '09), who is also is the curator of the exhibition and Vice-President of Business Development and Marketing at Janro Imaging Lab.

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