Installations with book, desk lamp with hidden camera, screen, computer, black table, and Ferns custom software
55 1/8 x 23 5/8 x 63” (140 x 60 x 160 cm)
In The Haunted Book and Le Monde des montagnes, Camille Scherrer animates the pages of books with an added dynamic dimension. The setup appears low-tech: a book, a laptop, and a familiar desk lamp on a table. But a camera is hidden inside the lamp, and when the book’s pages are turned they display a layer of virtual animation: a flock of birds suddenly materializes in a stormy sky, or a skeleton hand creeps across the page. The Haunted Book is based on a 19th-century gothic poem by Thomas Hood; Le Monde des montagnes is based on sayings from the Alpine region of Switzerland where Scherrer grew up. Scherrer made sure the reader could focus on the experience without being distracted by the technology; the high-performance custom software created by Julien Pilet of CVLAB, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, eliminated the need for visible, often clunky augmented-reality markers, thus doing away with a barrier between the virtual and the real. Neither the book nor the virtual dominate, reconciling the traditionally conflicting worlds of paper and screen and enabling them to enrich each other.