REFIK ANADOL is a media artist and director born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1985. Currently lives and works in Los Angeles, California. He is a lecturer in UCLA’s Department of Design Media Arts. He is working in the fields of site-specific public art with parametric data sculpture approach and live audio/visual performance with immersive installation approach, particularly his works explore the space among digital and physical entities by creating a hybrid relationship between architecture and media arts. He holds a master of fine arts degree from University of California, Los Angeles in Media Arts, master of fine arts degree from Istanbul Bilgi University in Visual Communication Design as well as bachelors of arts degree with summa cum laude in Photography and Video. Co-founder and Creative director at Antilop. As a media artist, designer and spatial thinker, Refik Anadol is intrigued by the ways in which the transformation of the subject of contemporary culture requires rethinking of the new aesthetic, technique and dynamic perception of space. Anadol builds his works on the nomadic subject’s reaction to and interactions with unconventional spatial orientations. Embedding media arts into architecture, he questions the possibility of a post digital architectural future in which there are no more non-digital realities. He invites the viewers to visualize alternative realities by presenting them the possibility of re-defining the functionalities of both interior and exterior architectural formations. Anadol’s work suggests that all spaces and facades have potentials to be utilized as the media artists’ canvases. He has been given awards, residencies and has served as a guest lecturer. His site-specific audio/visual performances have been seen in Walt Disney Concert Hall (USA), Hammer Museum (USA), International Digital Arts Biennial Montreal (Canada), Ars Electronica Festival (Austria), l’Usine | Genève (Switzerland), Arc De Triomf (Spain), Zollverein | SANAA’s School of Design Building (Germany), santralistanbul Contemporary Art Center (Turkey), Outdoor Vision Festival SantaFe New Mexico (USA), Istanbul Design Biennial (Turkey), Sydney City Art (Australia), Lichtrouten (Germany).






30 thoughts on “SEPT 23- REFIK ANADOL

  1. David Nessl says:

    Refik’s art of projection mapping is stunning to say the least. It’s a shame that the sound would not work due to some unfortunate technical difficulty. It would have been great to witness this new art-form with the audio accompaniment from something besides a laptop at the podium. Despite the digital bugs I was intrigued at Refik’s usage of big data to give life to his work, utilizing twitter feeds and mass sound capture to inform each piece. I’m also daunted by the high costs of projectors and the incredible knowledge base needed to code original software to keep innovating this form of art.

    Using data collected through digital interface systems like Twitter or traffic mapping websites is very unique. It’s like an artistic mirror showing us what we look like in digital form, or on a broad scale. Contemporary artists are intrigued by producing work that unifies people, inviting them and most often including them in the artistic process. In my opinion this is good and bad. Good because its a new way of looking at art and expanding its medium to show people what art can be and how it can be used. And bad because I feel that eventually public interactive art eliminates the artist as an individual, broadening art into more of an action than an object. As we progress into the future of artistic expression it tends to become harder and harder to actually define “art.” It’s the same as trying to give a definition for “technology.” Really think about it and ask yourself what is technology–a combination of electricity, materials, and tools? Is it a feeling, or an idea that creates? I couldn’t tell you.

    All in all what Refik is doing blows my mind both visually and technically. Now I wish I would have spent more time learning code than taking shots of vodka with my friends on the weekends. Like most digital art forms it’s partly the creativity and partly what amazing gadget you posses that showcases your work in the best quality possible. Most importantly, projection mapping is created in a physical space, shedding light on physical forms and involving actual people gathering together to witness its fascinating beauty.


  2. Evan Tedlock says:

    I had no expectations coming into this weeks seminar lecture but I left feeling more inspired than any of our previous presenters. Refik showed us project after project of his amazing work in and development of projection mapping and live processing. Then, I come to find out that he has only just finished his MFA last year. It blew me away. His concepts are solid and most of them based on some source of data. For example he created a data visualization of the Twitter activity for the entire city of San Francisco. I had no idea that it was even possible to generate such beautiful imagery in real time. I really appreciated the insider knowledge he shared with us about how he creates these projects. He uses a program called VVVV which is processing software much like Cycling ’74’s Max programs but the German developed VVVV seems to be a bit more powerful.

    The most interesting part of his presentation for me was his deftness at using conceptually appropriate data to drive the imagery. This element in his projects brings an immediate relevance to the conversation between the piece and the viewer. It presents the viewer with a scientific visual representation of data that gives perspective to otherwise abstract number sets. This visualization can be of any sort of data but brings with it an immediate, visceral understanding of what the data means and its implications. This understanding of data has traditionally been out of reach for most people who are not scientists or data analysts, but now with work like Refik’s, it makes this information palatable and understandable for just about everyone. It’s a dynamic that I’ve wanted to work with for a long time and it’s amazing to see another artist navigating those waters so adeptly.


  3. Erik Dumas says:

    It’s always fascinating to me to see new art forms developing. I went into Refik’s lecture knowing absolutely nothing about projection mapping or data visualization. Seeing how the process works, and how quick the time tables can be for those kind of temporary installations is mind boggling to me. The idea of adding interactive or real time elements to artwork is also intriguing to me. It raises the question of what expressing yourself as an artist means and whether or not allowing the audience to interact with and change the artwork is a hindrance on the artist’s ability to express themselves or simply a new avenue of expression.


  4. Yu Yu says:

    It’s hard to perform music or data visually. I can barely imagine what will those notes and numbers look like in life, or in an animation. Refik Anadol successfully make the sound and music alive! When the abstract objects dancing in the wave with music, on the building, a wall, or in the street, it’s like they are meant to be here, belong to the places they were putted. I love the concept for the Disney Concert Hall, both inside and outside. The animation perform perfectly with the orchestra as if they are also one of the band. It’s like bring Fantasia into the real world, but in an abstractly way. I can’t wait to see it by myself!

    Still, the technique needed for the projector artist are complex for me. Although Refik Anadol introduced some software and hardware in class, and said that they are “easy”, I still can’t even read them. I don’t know how to perform nonfigurative objects, either. That’s why I admire those digital artists. They can organize the program part and the performance so well, let the notes and numbers dance in their world.


  5. Really inspiring and super informative in the speech by Refik Andol! From the projects he did, I can understand how collaborative efforts of the huge scale of dynamic team and state of the art technologies work. With conveniences from open source and miscellaneous soft wares like processing, VVVV and MadMapper, people from diverse backgrounds can utilize efficiently for visualized coding and exchange ideas without limitation. So all these things make the bigger dreams and pieces come true.

    The projection journey around the world is also amazing, organic and transformative! He can get inspiration from the various kinds of structures and atmosphere in the city to create emotion which people left in the space. We can see the beauty and organism flowing track and data from his works.


  6. Okike Franklin says:

    I came expecting to see the mainstream projection mappings, where an animation is projected onto a building by following the buildings structural forms but when I saw the level of dept and amount of illusions you can achieve? I was hooked!!

    Refik’s presentation for me was unique because of the medium and the believable level of illusion achievable. I’ve never really understood the theory behind projections and why it’s consider art but from his presentation I sort of see why. One thing that stood out for me was the real-time visual representation of how people use social media or basically representing noise in visual forms.

    The way technology is rapidly growing and we as humans are advancing I won’t be surprised if Projecting on a building becomes the new way of painting or restructuring a building or have a build act like a mirror (projecting from a camera)


  7. Kun Xia says:

    I really enjoyed Refik Anadol’s presentation. I think there are lot of potential in projection mapping, and the goal of projection mapping is to turn almost any surface into a dynamic video display. Use software to warp and mask the projected image to make it fit perfectly on irregularly shaped screens. I really liked his “infinite room” piece. Anadol created the light installation Infinity an immersive environment project. It is also an integral part of his ongoing ‘Temporary Immersive Environment Experiments,’ a research on audio/visual installations by using the state called immersion which is the state of consciousness where is awareness of physical self is transformed by being surrounded in an engrossing environment. Rather than approaching the medium as a means of escape into some disembodied techno-utopian fantasy, projects sees itself as a means of return,


  8. Amir Arzanian says:

    I was always wondering about projection mapping. I had no idea how it was made or what people involve in creating this art. Refik presentation make it clear for me how does this technic work. Beside of the technical issues he discussed his artistic vision was interesting. He looks at the buildings in a way that is innovative and I can say strange. Buildings and their architecture are the potential canvas of his art. I also like his idea of how using facts and data as a source of creating arts. He had two projects that used statistical parameters as his source of inspiration. first the project in Istanbul which was brilliant to me. He used the noises level as his reference and made his projection so detailed based on the information he gathered. The second project was his project in San Francisco that he used tweets as his reference. The art of this project was amazing, the lights was showing online tweeter users and when a new tweets came it flashed. It was like we see the city breathes and alive. I think he moved projection mapping from technical level to more artistic level.


  9. Joseph Etemadi says:

    It was great opportunity to see the work of Refik Anadol presented to our class. It only seems to be a matter of time before this kind of work attracts the attention of mainstream commercialism. Like many forms of technological art that has evolved and attracted the attention of the public, this type of projection and installation art will one day be used to stream products and advertising on a grand scale. I am also really interested by the concept of projection mapping and installation art. I honestly would love to have my artwork and animation projected huge onto a building, so that it could manipulate the minds of anyone who walks by. I think it is a really powerful tool when you can fully immerse your audience into your world, and break the connection we have with our perceived reality.

    My favorite piece that Refik showed us had to be the “Infinity Room” because of its total immersion of space. I loved how a blank room could be transformed into an alternate universe of sound and color. The “Arc de Triomf” piece was also beautifully calculated, and I just love the way these structures can be transformed into moving pieces of visual art and design. It is an interesting idea to take such a large solid structure that is bound by its shape, and stretch it into any limit of the imagination.


  10. Yingzong Xin says:

    I was really happy to see Refik Anado’s presentation, the mapping projects he did were stunning and unique .I was always want to know about the secret of this technique , and Refik’s presentation has gave me the answer very clearly . As the technology is increasing, mapping has lots of potential to become a widely art form. And I really enjoy the project in San Francisco ,he did bring life to the city which is amazing. I can tell for him, mapping technique is not about technical anymore, he made a good combination of art and technique to make work, this will become a new level of the modern art.


  11. Sequoyah Madison says:

    Perhaps it is because I am more drawn to narrative works, but I unfortunately felt a little underwhelmed by Relik’s presentation. Relik’s work wasn’t the problem; I found his work very interesting and I think that mapping out information using light in a CG environment , while it is not a sculpture would be very informative to look at as a record of a community. His early projection works on buildings were also captivating, but I feel Relik failed to share anything of depth that students couldn’t have simply found by perusing his website. The problem could very well have been that the information he did share was just not presented in a way that was palatable for both the technologically advanced and inept, but regardless I failed to find the spark that normally leaves me feeling inspired by the end. Well, I now know VVVV, Antilop, and Cinema 4D exist, but not their inner workings or how an artist could potentially utilize them to improve the world through art.


  12. Tuo Kan says:

    Refik Anadol’s works are very fascinating to me. He’s using predictors to decorate spaces. For me, it’s an area that I always interested in.

    Here’s some works of him that I really like. The Coco cola’s room. I noticed that is just a room with screens on walls. But when the visual effects are showing on the screens, the room’s covered by an incredible environment. I even feel the space’s turning around and I feel that I lost the gravity. I guess that’s the charm of some kinds of installation arts like this one. I feel dizzy but in a good way.

    I also like the two communicating robots. It’s very unique and interesting. And the Disney hall one is my favorite. I heard that he used more than 40 projectors to create that outside’s lighting. I worked with Michael and Candace last semester to make the visual music like this, and I have a lot of fun to do it. Maybe that will be one of my future directions.


  13. Joe Stucky says:

    Phenomenal presentation! I have done some research into projection mapping. Some what minimal though in comparison to what Refik was able to show us. The code (software) that he was using was a bit over whelming. The data information that he was able to utilize is interesting (although a little freaky). Visualizing the things that are unseen is ground breaking. There are many outcomes of technology, and it is a great to see it used in a way that uncovers new landscapes. I really appreciate the work Refik was able to accomplish with visual music. Refik’s projects and concepts where an open door to a lot of possibilities. I can’t wait to see what he is up to next.


  14. Katie Smith says:

    Refik’s presentation was very interesting, I loved seeing the ‘Twitter’ project he did in San Francisco. It was incredible seeing how he intertwined the tweets from people to create these sound type projections, and to see where the most densely populated they were. The level of artistry he achieves with his work is really incredible. It was a little hard for me to follow at points, as I tend to lean towards narrative pieces of animation and storytelling. It has been eye-opening though seeing presentations like Refik’s, and also different clips of experimental animation in our History class – I’m glad to be learning about these different forms of animation art. While I know it is not something I want to do myself, I really appreciate hearing about it and learning about that world.


  15. Hyeon Jeong Cho says:

    When I was in undergraduate school, I roughly learned about projection mapping(very basic of Arena). I was awed by the result and wondered how the artists can plan and handle such a big project.
    This is the first time that I met someone who is actually involved in this art form – during the presentation, I thought what is the future form of the art, and the boundary between fine art and public art, and the art and technology. The border between different realms are being destroyed and things combines, and give birth of totally new form.
    The city map of tweeting was absolutely stunning, it can be said that combination between technology and the art. It’s little bit hard to how he made all of the result, but I appreciated that he explained and shared all the process of the work and the programs he is using.
    As a 2D drawing-orientated person, the presentation was pleasingly threatening time.


  16. Megan Simon says:

    Refik Anadol is a fascinating figure in the artworld. Inspiring for students considering his senior project of projecting an animation onto the building of his art school got him international recognition. Certainly a goal to seek out as animation students when considering our projects. I enjoyed Refik walking us through each of his projects. Most interesting was considering his collaboration with corporations to create artwork. The work produced wasn’t exactly advertisement, yet the fact it’s commissioned work doesn’t exactly make it independent fine art either. Of course art has a long history of financial sponsorship, many master painters work was made out of commission for royalty or churches. There is certainly a historic link to Anadol’s work and the history of art itself. This link isn’t entirely isolated into the fine art world, but also through animation. Visual music has it’s own distinct impact on the development of animation throughout history, and is one of those rare venues that is shared by both commercial and the fine arts.

    I think this is best represented through Anadol’s collaboration with Disney. To hear that a CEO like figure at Disney was excited about something that may seem obscure to the onlooker was actually quite encouraging to hear. No doubt it was due to Disney’s distinct link to visual music through Fantasia, and employing Fleischer. While Disney itself hasn’t had the most commercial success with it’s work in visual music, it has clearly been a passion shared by many within the company. Eric Goldberg has often mentioned his experiences working on Fantasia 2000 stating often that the budget they had was not nearly as limited as it would have been on the average feature film.

    But why is Anadol’s work so compelling? Projection work isn’t entirely a new idea. Neither is creating animation through computer coding. There is a fresh quality to his work, most notably the pieces where sound and interactivity are utilized. I think this comes from both the aesthetic of his work, and the innovation of its use. Projecting onto the side of a building to bring new life to the space, or moving robotics to create an unbelievable interactive work. I think moving outside the theater and the screen is what makes Anadol’s work truly spectacular. Even with Disney he wasn’t projecting onto the screen behind the orchestra, but instead onto the walls and the architecture of the building. The idea that animation can bring a space to life is truly distinct, and something I look forward to see how artists like Refik Anadol express through their work in the future.


  17. Yijie Li says:

    Projection arts are not a fresh word to me, I wasn’t expect much until I saw the video that his works are actually projected onto a huge building. The graphic seems to surpass the medium of the projection and the architecture, which give this art a new interpretation. It must be way more astounded when you are at the live scene.

    REFIK’s presentation is pretty different and unique from previous presentation. To my surprise that his precise and complex calculation has such a emotional and intense result. His theories or principles beneath these intriguing visual arts are clearer and easier to comprehend via his explaining.

    Technology is rapidly growing and it is more excited to see an artist to control it and explore the depth of the technology itself. Projecting is surely the pioneer of the conflict of tradition and rising art.


  18. Jing Huang says:

    Refik Anadol gave me a amazing presentation that full of inspiration of new art form that is mapping projection. I always be in trouble with technique things and wondering how to make new technique combine to art. Because as I focus on the technique I will be distracted by it and ignore the art. But Refik gave me a perfect example that combination between art and technique.My favorite part is “infinite room” that I immersed so much. And I wondering how to do these things and need more detail to know it more, it’s a inspiration that there are more art form could be combination with animation or other art form. I will do more research about it.


  19. Jinyue Wan says:

    What Refik Anadol did is really amazing!

    Nowadays, the technique has become one of the most important things in art and creation. The artists have to know more about the technology, especially for those multi-media artists. As an animation student, technology is a very important element to us. For example, I’m doing a 3D animation now, which I never did before, and I have to spend a lot of time on learning the technique things.

    Refik Anadol is really good at using those techniques, he have good taste on art, and also have the ability to create great artwork with the modern technique. And that’s what I need to learn from him. There are still some people think it’s stupid to spend too much time on learning technique, now I can tell them it’s not wasting time, it’s valuable to spend time on it.


  20. Min Shi says:

    Projection mapping is the most interesting art work that recently I have ever since. This art form is kind of an art form that combine fine arts, new tech, architecture together, so in my opinion, this new media has potential.

    What Refik Anadol brought us today is amazing. Beside his technical issues how he considers his inspiration is interesting, he looks at the buildings in a way that is innovative.

    My favorite Refik’s work is “Infinity Room”, from his work he develops space so well . I loved how a blank room be transformed into a space that like universe of spacing, dimension sound and color.


  21. yudu says:

    I have been always interested in projection mapping. I love the idea that projecting the image on the architectures and landscapes. Since I have already seen projection mapping, as a matter of fact I have already have some experience on projection mapping. And I have already seen the project that he created and projected on Disney Hall. I thought I will be surprise but won’t be too surprised by the content of this presentation. However Refik Anadol proves me wrong. The idea of data visualization blows my mind! He sculpts with data. I have only tiny bit experience on data collecting and coding. So honestly I didn’t completely understand how everything works. However the way he generate data, transform them and use those data into his work is absolutely amazing. It is the first time you can really see the data. In addition, I love how he mentioned the interaction between audience and the art project, and using audience as an important element to affect the immersive world. Overall the presentation brings a brainstorm to my mind. I will definitely follow him and search more about what he is doing.


  22. Mayra Flores says:

    Most of what Refik Anadol was talking about went over my head but I can tell it was thoroughly researched and that a lot of thought went behind making these installation pieces not to mention all the team work and funding necessary to bring these about. New ways of visualizing all the data being generated in real time is also cool and also a bit creepy how everything is being recorded and is available for anyone to access. Those moving robot sculptures were pretty great. Aside from the wow factor, I don’t really know how I feel about this emerging technology but I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of this in the future.


  23. Jinzhi Du says:

    Since projection mapping art becomes more and more popular in visual art field, we can actually get some new experiences of the form of art which we will never imagine without it. This is such an unbelievable art form for everybody. Especially Refik Anadol gave me a lot of inspiration.

    As he describes, one of his experiments discuss the inherent spatial qualities of immersive virtual environments and their effect on the embodied person. Through the presented framework, the experiments intends to question the relativity of perception and how it informs the apprehension of our surroundings. Rather than approaching the medium as a means of escape into some disembodied techno-utopian fantasy, projects sees itself as a means of return, i.e. facilitating a temporary release from our habitual perceptions and culturally biased assumptions about being in the world, to enable us, however momentarily, to perceive ourselves and the world around us freshly.

    That totally achieved the main superiority of projection mapping art. The improvement of technique will push it more.


  24. xiruiliu says:

    Refik Anadol’s art work is more abstract art form for me. I love his idea to mapping animation into the out look of buildings. especially, he is really good at explore the space and form of object, When his work project to the big building, it is looks like the building can move with the line and changing light, also with the movement of scale cubes, the really space is changing visually in front of audience, It is so amazing masterpiece.

    Also, he can match his visually part with music so well. Like he made the mapping projection in the Disney hall, It is looks like making a new world inside the building. audience can have a better feeling to enjoy this show.

    The most hard part for realize his art work is to combining the music, animation and new projection technique together. But, he is successful to resolve those difficulties and making those amazing art works.


  25. Zhaoyu Zhou says:

    I love Refik’s work a lot! Mike Patterson introduced me his work in the beginning of this semester since I am doing a motion design project for my second year film. Therefore, it is a perfect time for me know know Refik and his amazing works. To me, he is not only a designer, but also a concept-builder who makes advanced works by utilizing sophisticated technologies such as project mapping. As an artist and designer, Refik has done a great job to merge art and design, integrated with visual music. Consider he’s from UCLA Design and Media Art program, it’s not hard for me to recognize his design style by looking his amazing work. My goal is to be a designer like him. Great talk! Many thanks to Refik for being here to give us such an amazing show.


  26. mengna Lei says:

    it is such an amazing technique and design to design, create and mapping the media arts on the specific screen, sculpture or architecture. it will be so astonishing when the visual media been projected on the other medium.
    I really feel making this kind of art needs to have a good aesthetic consciousness and also a good acknowledge of managing data and the good ability of arrange project.
    what is more, also need to have a good awareness of music.
    I like his work.


  27. Ruchia Masuko says:

    Refic Anadol’s works are so amazing, I am overwhelmed to his works.
    All his works are so beautiful.
    It is so amazing that his works are blended with the surroundings, such as buildings, structures and musics. I found projection mapping is little different from other VFX.
    When I saw actual projection mapping, I thought that viewer given more like illusion, they are more similar to coming into your perceptions and consciousness than they are just bing seen by viewers.
    I am looking forward to see more of Refic Anadol’s future works.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: