The Royal Road Project was collectively envisioned by the artist team comprised of Ethan Bach, Charles Veasey, and J. Craig Tompkins, (later joined by invited artist Sinte’ Jackson Torrez) who have a history of working together in innovative media projects. Together, their media creations, including a documentary on Transgender individuals, an online geolocative sound map, and interactive video and audio installations, have been shown nationally and internationally at locations including the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Santa Fe Complex, and Electrocuciones Electrocution in Madrid, Spain.
One of the artist team’s past collaborative efforts that led to the envisioning of The Royal Road is the Hudson Mohawk Sound Gate (HMSG). The HMSG, designed by Charles Veasey, is a study and an artistic representation of geographic soundscape morphology. It documents and reproduces changes in the sonic environment over time, including geophony (sounds of the earth), biophony (sounds of animals), and anthrophony (sounds of humans and machines) at the geographic meeting point of the Hudson and Mohawk Rivers. This project began in 2007 and has been distributed through three installations, two concerts, and via radio broadcasts. J. Craig Tompkins coordinated with Veasey on the creation of a sound map web art connected to this project. The project is currently being archived at the Hudson Mohawk Sound Gate Website.
Another collaborative project was Retrieving Humanity, a telematic video art installation that used custom built software that coordinated live global feeds. Retrieving Humanity was shown in 2010 at the Santa Fe Complex, and brought live streaming video and audio from around the world to Santa Fe in real time. Through the use of cutting-edge technology, including custom-made as well as DJ and VJ software, motion sensors, media streaming, and computer networking, Retrieving Humanity allowed the audience, by participation, to explore and express connections with their community and the world at large.
Charles Veasey Charles Veasey is an internationally exhibited artist based out of Santa Fe, New Mexico. He received an MFA in Electronic Arts at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2008 and a BS in Visual and Audio Communications Technology at Bowling Green State University in 2006. He has been a working artist in the field of new media art and composition for over a decade creating electroacoustic music and soundscapes, interactive installations, and web art. His electroacoustic compositions place real and imagined sounds into the listener’s consciousness allowing one to perceive aural worlds of the past and present. With his interactive installations, he explores the human-computer relationship through experiences of light, sound, and motion. Using net technologies he explores telepresence, telematics, and artistic web application development. His work serves as a reflection of perceptual awareness; it encourages meditations on the self (human), the environment (nature), and the future (technology). Charles works as an interactive software developer at Ideum where he creates custom museum exhibits and serves as the project coordinator for the multi-touch framework Open Exhibits. He also works as the digital dome software developer for IAIA programming interactive tools for fulldome theaters.
J. Craig Tompkins
J. Craig Tompkins is an artist and designer living and working in Santa Fe, New Mexico where he serves as Animation Faculty at the Institute of American Indian Arts. He received an MFA in Electronic Arts at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2009. In 2006 he graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a BFA in Media: Film and Video. Craig works primarily in the fields of 3D animation, previsualization, and scale modeling, branching out into video compositing and installation. As a collaborative artist, he designs and constructs scale models and sets for photography, film, and installation. Craig also works collaboratively as a previsualization and concept artist on projects ranging from exhibit design to architectural public artworks. Some of his collaborations can be found in Pittsburgh, PA at the Center for Postnatural History and at the Museum of Contemporary Arab Art in Sharjah, UAE. In Summer 2011 and 2012, he acted as Lead Faculty Adviser to IAIA students at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in the formation of the Creative Humanics Laboratory (CHL). CHL is an ongoing design, modeling, and simulation experiment in collaboration with IAIA, NASA, and the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC). Students and faculty work side by side on a wide set of projects including: mobile application design, graphic design, 3D modeling and animation, and research. Craig’s work has shown nationally and internationally from New York to Novi Sad, Serbia.
Ethan Bach is an internationally known media artist who works primarily in immersive and interactive media. Ethan Bach is a consultant, project manager and art producer. Bach is the owner and operator of Bach Multimedia. He received an MFA in Electronic Arts from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2008 and BA in Media Production from The Evergreen State College in 1996. Bach served as Principal Investigator for a DoD grant developing interactivity for fulldome and a research associate for a National Science Foundation grant developing tools and content for fulldome environments in his former position as the Digital Dome Manager at the Institute of American Indian Arts. Bach is internationally known for his media art which is primarily in immersive and interactive media. Bach’s artistic expertise in experimental media won him awards from the Santa Fe Arts Commission, New Mexico Film Visions, and New Mexico Art in Public Spaces. Solo Exhibitions include the interactive, real-time international storytelling installation, “Retrieving Humanity” (2010) at the Santa Fe Complex, as well as “Translations” (2010) at the NW Film Forum in Seattle. His recent work interactive video installation “The Royal Road Project” has shown at Aqua Art as part of Art Basel Miami (2012) and will show in Currents 2013. He has been invited to show at international experimental media and film exhibitions from Bangalore to Madrid.
Invited Artist – Sinte’ Jackson Torrez (New Mexico Public Arts at the Centennial Art Space)
Sinte’ Jackson Torrez is a proud Mestizo artist of Oneida, French and Mexican descent. A New Media Arts / Film student at the Institute of American Indian Arts, he is also a developing painter, screen writer and photographer. Working full time with disadvantaged youth over the past 13 years, his work continues to reflect the voice of the underprivileged. Often colorful and political in nature, Sinte’s work looks to advance individual and collective possibilities.