Visualizing Moving Image Archives

Although there are numerous publicly-available moving image archives, in many cases it would take years of continuous viewing for an individual scratch the surface of a single archive. My goal is not to make sense of the contents of a given archive. Rather, by leveraging computer algorithms that analyze and organize sonic and visual patterns, I have developed techniques to immerse viewers in a massive birds-eye-view of sounds and images that surface the underlying forms, textures, and atmospheres of the source materials. I have compressed tens of thousands of clips from numerous public film and video archives into minutes-long visualizations, including the U.S. National Archives, the 2016 U.S. Presidential TV Ad Archive from the Internet Archive, and the Macaulay Library from The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Each archive is run through the same computer algorithm, but results in distinct experiences that highlight each archive’s unique fingerprint of sound and image. All the visualizations are generated completely from custom code that will be released open source to the public. In this talk, I will demo some of the visualizations and walk through my technical and creative process.


4:30 PM
20 minutes