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Interactive Annual 18:

Amon Tobin ISAM

Launch Live Site

“A gorgeous interactive performance incorporating dynamic video and music.”
—Kim Rees

“This mind-blowing combination of music, digital projection and 3-D sculpture is as technically amazing as it is sensually stimulating.” —David Wright

Overview: In 2011, electronic artist Amon Tobin toured to support his new Ninja Tune Records release ISAM. The breath-taking set for his performances featured an array of inter-connected boxes, including one central cube that functioned as the artist’s cockpit. The use of real-time projection mapping and generative, audio-reactive graphics, mixed with traditionally rendered media created one-of-a-kind experiences for each audience. It’s the perfect blend of technology, sound, design and animation, in the hands of one phenomenal musical artist.

  • • Creating the visual content spanned almost three months.
  • • In addition to creating a custom projection alignment tool for handling complex mapping projects, the team also used a Kinect hack to capture a 3-D representation of Amon, projected on-stage in real-time during the performance, that functioned as a virtual controller for him to pluck invisible strings and control visuals.
  • • After the show premiered at the MUTEK Festival in Montréal, all subsequent North American tour dates were completely sold out.

Comments by Leviathan

What was the most challenging aspect of the project? “As his fans know, Amon is partial to melding organic and mechanical sounds to create narrative; we wanted to do the same with his performance visuals for ISAM. Once concept development started, the team began factoring in a spaceship, nebulae, asteroids and other abstract imagery to represent the journey concert-goers would experience. Creating original, long-form content in this style for live-performance projection mapping was taken to a whole new level when we saw the projection surface—stacked white cubes.

“While we, and about a dozen artists, set about creating animated content for five of the album’s tracks, the programmers focused on the challenge of aligning projected, mapped content on the complex structure of Amon’s stage set. A live 3-D camera feed of Amon is distorted with effects and projected onto the structure’s façade, over the pre-rendered animation. The result is unbelievable and, in fact, every aspect of each performance is custom tailored for Amon to deliver amazing, one-of-a-kind performances ”


Aaron Edwards/Gareth Fewel/Derek Weglarz, design team
Sam Gierasimczuk/Bradon Webb, creative directors
Jason White, executive creative director
Adam Berg/Bryant Place, V Squared Labs/Peter Sistrom, V Squared Labs, programmers
Matt Daly/Alex Lazarus, technology directors
Daniel Ryan/Vello Virkhaus, V Squared Labs, editors
Ashley Hughes/Mathew Smith, photographers
Chris Beers/Erik Jensen/Tim Sepulveda, visual effects artists
Vello Virkhaus, V Squared Labs, director
Dave Foss, V Squared Labs/Carlos Sa, V Squared Labs/Emilio Sa, V Squared Labs, animators
David Brodeur/Blake Cartwright/Jody Evenson/Jimi Filipovski/Katrina Nelken/Dave Pasciuto/Dan Tiffany, 3-D animators
Krissy Estrada, associate producer
Anastasia King Jaress, V Squared Labs/Brandy Olsen, producers
Chad Hutson/Alex Lazarus, executive producers
Heather Shaw, Vita Motus Design Studio, production designer/structural designer
Jarret Smith, consultant
Stefano Novelli, fabricator
Leviathan (Chicago, IL)/V Squared Labs/Vita Motus Design Studio, project design and development
Ninja Tune Records/Amon Tobin, clients

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