Millerntor Gallery #11
The Millerntor Gallery is an annual art exhibition inside the football stadium of FC St. Pauli in Hamburg, Germany.
It is being organised by Viva Con Agua a non-profit organisation that is working for clean drinking water, sanitation and hygiene in places where these basic human needs are not met.
The installation we participated with was a team effort by Pascal Reitz and me.
The idea based on the motto of this years Millerntor Gallery "MAKING WAVES" was to use an old rotary phone and use it to control a projector that shows a different animation for each number on the dial.
The sound of the animation being played through the receiver of the phone.
Technically I set up the project with an Arduino Micro to collect the analogue signals from the phone and send them to the computer as well as taking a sound signal from the computer and feed it into the phone.
All of it based pretty much entirely on this youtube tutorial (german).

After that I used Javascript and a browser to build the logic of showing the different videos mapped to the numbers 0-9.

All of the code is available on github.
The biggest chunk of animation was done by Pascal Reitz. He provided 7 of the 10 animations. To see his work in action check his website or instagram.

Nonetheless I also created three of the animations.
They where mainly done in Procreate (Rough Character Animation), Clip Studio Paint (Clean Up), Adobe After Effects (Composition) and some work in Adobe Photoshop (Pixelart, Backgrounds).
Character Design and Animation: Photoshop
Background Animation: Done by David Majdandzic
Composition: After Effects
Water Walk
Character Rough Animation: Procreate
Character Clean Up: Clip Studio Paint
Background: AI Generated
Composition: After Effects
Trippy Hippie
Character Design: Procreate
Background Animation: Procreate
Composition: After Effects
Unfinished Drafts
Besides the finished Videos I had to abandon some animation ideas because of time/technical restrictions.

One was a character animation of a child throwing a coin into a wishing well while a dragon appears from the clouds. This one I did not have enough time to finish because the animation was too complex.

And another one which was supposed to take the image from a camera and project it into a "sea" of dots. That one was "generative art" done in code and did not perform well after the first drafts. As I also did not know if I could actually get a good camera position at the gallery I abandoned this idea as well. 
Initially, no mural was planned for the installation. But because of construction circumstances the projector hat to fairly close to the wall and therefor the image was pretty small.

Based on that Pascal and I decided that we take a few hours of the last day before opening to add a small mural frame around the projection area.
Ideally there is always something to sell, next to the art at the Millerntor Gallery because the main focus of the event is to collect money for clean water around the world.

Because of that I painted two rotary phones to be sold off.
Another one was painted by Pascal.
Participating at the Millerntor Gallery was one of my artistic goals that I was aiming for since I started taking art seriously in 2019. After being blocked from participating in 2020 by Covid it was great to check this box 3 years later.

It was not all fun and games though.
The possibility of adding a projector installation to the gallery was unclear till shortly before the gallery started,
the projection area was way smaller than expected so we had to add a unplanned mural "frame",
Pascal had very limited time,
I had very limited time,
animation is not my main art focus and is a completely different animal,
on the first day of soft opening the installation crashed every 30 minutes,

But even though it was very stressful to get everything done on short notice it was still a dream come true and a true bliss to watch 17.000 people go through the gallery and many of them stopping at these old phones, trying them, figuring out how it works, enjoying the animation and most of all:
Kids playing with them for a long time even though they have never seen a rotary phone in their lives.

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