In November 2017 Media City Bergen officially opened it’s doors. As part of launching a new international hub for media and technology innovation, an interactive media installation – Eiris – was conceived.
Eiris was the Goddess of the Rainbow and Messenger of the Olympian Gods. As a conceptual starting point the name encompasses both the purpose of the media industry and the spectrum of coloured light that enable the capturing, transportation & presentation of media content – a concept shared by the brand’s interactive identity.
Media City Bergen [MCB] is home to the Norwegian National Media Tech Cluster. The building houses a variety of brands including Norway’s two largest national and private broadcasters NRK and TV2, a university campus for UiB, two newspapers BT and BA, and internationally leading media technology companies such as Vizrt & Vimond Media Solutions, and many other creative, media and tech SMEs. This dynamic space is used by executives to public personalities, journalists to technologists, students to entrepreneurs, while functioning as a new public space within the city.
Strategically placed just inside the entrance of Media City’s large atrium, Eiris lives in the public space, welcoming guests and media professionals alike.
Eiris’ job, like a media personality of the information age, is to present and personify content. Like a person – an entity in today’s society is determined by its interactions – the form, quality & frequency of them. We are what we share, why we share and how we share.
Influenced by how the content is received online (the number and types of reactions each new article gets; like, love, angry etc.) the installation changes it’s appearance, behaviour and personality accordingly. With the intent of achieving the Eliza effect, the human psychological tendency to unconsciously assume artificial behaviours are analogous to human behaviours, the installation expresses it’s agency through the illusion of a living, moving, blinking eye.
Eiris is also affected in the immediate environment, by single and combined human interactions, live and over time. Interactions such as eye contact, movement & gestures or lack thereof.
The combined effect is a provocative and emotive presentation of media — blurring the boundaries between ‘medium’, ‘content’ and ‘audience’.
Through this system of influence Eiris becomes a dynamic personification of our relations to media. The nature of this is determined by the viewer, who plays a direct role in influencing Eiris’ persona. The result is therefore unique and evolving — interpreted as anything from novel entertainment to profound questioning of our media age and social interactions through technology.