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Landscape Mode

Year: 2023
Format: ReBoard figures, Maps & Panoramic curtain
Commissioned by FABER for the exhibition Turn Signals - Design Is Not a Dashboard curated by Martina Muzi.

Welcome to Landscape Mode — A place where everything looks eerily familiar, a ghost of binges past, a faint memory of childhood fairytales, a composite of content. Online travel agency Expedia confirms that ‘set-jetting’, travel inspired by movies and TV shows, is the top source of vacation influence, outranking social media. With a similar ambition, the tourist board of Ireland has partnered with Ubisoft of the Assassin’s Creed game series to attract tourists. The game is famous for it’s historical settings, so much so that a Discovery Tour mode has been added for players to take virtual tours of ancient Egypt, Greece and Ireland.

As a popular film location, Romania has experienced its share of set-jetting. Following the release of Tim Burton’s hit Netflix series Wednesday, tourism to Romania experienced a boom, immersive bus tours to the various film locations fully booked. The series, although set in Vermont USA, is filmed throughout various locations and film sets in Romania. In Burton’s words: “Trying to make Romania look like Vermont was an interesting challenge, but we felt like we found lots of new locations.” The series star Jenna Ortega commented on the locations accuracy: “One of the places we went to was Sinaia and everything looked Photoshopped.” The Romanian landscape, cities and landmarks have acted as proxy for New Jersey, the Appalachian Mountains, Paris, Moscow, the American South. Sometimes the reasons are financial as the country offers substantial incentives to support the local film industry. But other times the authenticity of Romanian film locations are superior to ‘the real thing’. In the movie Cold Mountain, set in 1860’s North Carolina, the Carpathian Mountains offered certainty of snowfall and less modern day infrastructure to remove in post-production, compared to the actual Cold Mountain in the USA. The same ‘wilderness’ attracted Panasonic to shoot several camera commercials in the country. It’s a thin edge between the projection of a cliché, a stereotype produced through media and actual life in a place. Similarly, Romania is no stranger to pop-culture references with werewolves, vampires, giants and ogres deeply rooted in local culture and lore. Over time these characters have been absorbed by mainstream entertainment and inspired entire IP franchises as Shrek, Dracula, The Wolfman, The Twilight series, Buffy — an entire catalog of gothic fantasy.

Landscape Mode is a panorama to take your own photo among the composite visual culture produced by outsourced landscapes, appropriated characters and amplified cliches. The figures and landscapes are all collected from online repositories of 3d scans or prompted with text-to-3d AI generation tools. These sources represent that which is captured and shared (scan) or an amalgamation through mainstream media (prompt).

↑ **Landscape Mode** Exhibition view of *Turn Signals — Design is not a Dashboard* at FABER Timișoara, Romania. Photos by Alex Todirică.

Landscape Mode Exhibition view of Turn Signals — Design is not a Dashboard at FABER Timișoara, Romania. Photos by Alex Todirică.

↑ Map for the background curtain and re-board figures annotating their source and documenting landscape proxies used in cinematic production.

↑ Map for the background curtain and re-board figures annotating their source and documenting landscape proxies used in cinematic production.

↑ Trading cards of the re-board figures indicating their source, text prompt, author and platform of origin, where applicable.

↑ Trading cards of the re-board figures indicating their source, text prompt, author and platform of origin, where applicable.

↑ Close up of the background curtain showing two text-to-mesh generated 'Ogres' which simply replicate Shrek, the ogre popularized with the 2001 3d animated movie by DreamWorks.

↑ Close up of the background curtain showing two text-to-mesh generated 'Ogres' which simply replicate Shrek, the ogre popularized with the 2001 3d animated movie by DreamWorks.

↑ Two 'Werewolves' generated with text-to-mesh prompt.

↑ Two 'Werewolves' generated with text-to-mesh prompt.

↑ Two 'vampires' standing in front of the Biserica de lemn de la Porț with Enisala fortress in the background. The text-to-mesh generated 'vampires' look eerily like the Addams family, popularized (again) by the Netflix series Wednesday in 2022.

↑ Two 'vampires' standing in front of the Biserica de lemn de la Porț with Enisala fortress in the background. The text-to-mesh generated 'vampires' look eerily like the Addams family, popularized (again) by the Netflix series Wednesday in 2022.

Credits

⦁ Design: Simone C Niquille
⦁ Production Assistance: FABER
⦁ Printing: AZERO
⦁ Sand: Evrika Pro Mosaic, Azur
⦁ 3d Assets:
FlyboiPhoto
emennpreserve
graygabriel
FluidState Consulting
Neo_minigan
RYOkEkEN
elepiech
nyannya
Brian Zimmer
SriramG \ karanganesan
AlphaLegendz
Xarddrax
Popa Cristian Vlad
Andrea Spognetta
Badri Gogia

technoflesh Studio ( ᐛ )و

Design & Research practice
of Simone C Niquille

Located in Amsterdam, NL

CONTACT
studio at technofle.sh

INSTAGRAM
@technoflesh