ROGERS PARK — An interactive art installation in a vacant Howard Street storefront will track passers-by and project 3D-like video toward the street, said artist Benjamin Keddy.
The Pilsen-based artist plans to use a projector and a Kinect motion-tracking device, commonly used with video game consoles, to display a 3D scene onto the sidewalk-facing windows of a storefront adjacent to Sol Cafe, 1615 W. Howard St., next month.
This will be Keddy's second project of its kind. The first one featured a scene of a drab insurance sales office during summer 2014 in Cambridge, Mass.
The motion-tracking device follows viewers and dishes out images to give the illusion of a real 3D space. The images are projected onto a thin film on the storefront windows.
Keddy said he hopes the art installation would communicate the dichotomy of a vibrant space, like Sol Cafe, and an idle one, like the empty storefront.
"What I really wanted to highlight was the difference between a space that's being occupied regularly by customers and a space that’s … sort of lost its utility," he said.
Keddy said he expects the projection to be ready for interaction in mid-April.
Howard Street has seen a resurgence of art-based endeavors. Sol Cafe has remained successful and an art gallery opened a viewing space on the same block. Factory Theater plans to open two doors down from the cafe later this year.
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