Polemic

Hamish Campbell – Aotearoa New Zealand

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Whau Flags

25 Sep 2015

I've been working on a side project for the Whau Arts Festival happening in Avondale, Auckland from the 15th - 18th October. "Whau Flags" is an interactive installation (online at whauflags.nz and via screens at the festival) that generates flag designs. The site gives participants ways to interact with the installation by guiding the evolution of new designs, saving and sharing favourites and more. It's still under construction but usable now.

Each flag is represented by a genome that defines the colour palette and constituent patterns that make up the design. For example, the flag 356o560oCA0-5113o3125o3446- looks like this:

From a flag page in the website, you can click the 'evolve' button to produce new variants. Each 'allele' of the flag genome can mutate, migrate or disappear entirely in a generation. Some of the results are surprising:

I'm looking forward to see how people use the site, and it's possible that a local sewing group will be "materializing" some of the designs as real life flags to fly at the event.

The festival itself is only in its second year, but it provides a platform for alternative and experimental projects. There will be live metal-working, tattoo, a boy-racer chauffeur 'experience' (for lack of a better description), experimental architecture, large scale street art and a lot more. Hope to see you there!