Projection Art & The Human Body Combined

Posted on December 9, 2015 by Liesl Ulrich-Verderber

What does it look like when the human body becomes a canvas?

For centuries, artists have painted, sculpted, and drawn the human form. It seems to be a natural human impulse, even since the early days of cave painting, to depict the human body in art.

What does it look like when one adds technology to the relationship between the body and art?

Projection Art on Back Mandala
Source: OSKAR & GASPAR

Liesl, you might say, we know the answer to this already.  The body has been a canvas for art forms like fashion, body painting, and tattooing for years! True, but what about being painted in light, with projection art? Artist duo Oskar & Gaspar have changed the interaction between art and body with their pioneering use of projection mapping.

Before I go into the magic of projection mapping, I will start you off with a video by Oskar & Gaspar that takes full advantage of the human body as a canvas (what you will see, below, is as the attendees saw it live, with no post-production editing)…

Each time I re-watch this video, I notice something new in the projections. What an incredible way to not only celebrate the human form, but also bring to life the two dimensional works of art being projected onto them!

Projection Art

Projection mapping, or video mapping, uses projection technology to turn all kinds of surfaces, often irregular ones, into canvases for video projection. Projection mapping is perhaps most widely used in theater, concerts, and gaming (Americans might be most familiar with its common use during Superbowl halftime shows).

Here’s a quick look at the wide range of current uses for projection mapping, as well as some potential uses for the future:

This certainly won’t be the last time we feature artists working with projection mapping! If you missed our piece by Bot & Dolly that also utilizes this technology, go check it out!

If you know of any worthy artists working in the world of projection mapping, or any other art or technology you think we should hear about, please let us know!

In the meanwhile, be sure to check out some of the other artists we have featured here on EWC!

-Liesl
“Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.”-Victor Borge

Liesl can be found on Instagram @Liesl.UV


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Liesl Ulrich-Verderber is a camera toting traveler, a global story seeker, and an aspiring—but more often floundering—yogi. She can be found on Instagram @Liesl.UV

Notes:

  1. Oskar & Gaspar. “Ink Mapping: Video Mapping Projection on Tattoos, by Oskar & Gaspar.” Vimeo. Desperados, 22 Oct. 2015. Web. 01 Dec. 2015. <https://vimeo.com/143296099>.
  2. “Projection Mapping – The Future Is Here.” YouTube. Projection Mapping Central, 28 July 2015. Web. 01 Dec. 2015. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKMCB5v8pt0>.