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Random
International

Live and work in Berlin and London

Founded in 2005, Random International creates experiential artworks and installations that often use light, sound, and movement to explore the possibilities of behavior and interaction. Using electronic components with artificial intelligence and also simpler analog means, the group makes work that facilitates encounters between viewers and an object or a room.

The studio's projects have the capacity to delight, stimulating conversation through group dynamics and unexpected encounters with various phenomena. Rain Room (2012/2013), which enjoyed record crowds at New York's Museum of Modern Art in the summer of 2013, allows viewers to enter a field of falling water without being drenched, as programmed sensors alter the precipitation based on human presence. The installation Future Self (2012) also facilitates an encounter between the viewer and an ephemeral material. It consists of a structure built of aluminum rods and motion-sensitive LEDs. As individuals move around and before the installation, the lights respond, creating a dynamic sculpture in direct dialogue with its audience.

The studio's preoccupation with reflecting its audience becomes literal in the work Temporary Printing Machine (2011). In this work, a white screen hung on a wall scans the image of the individual who stands before it, momentarily functioning as a physically accurate mirror. However, as the work's name suggests, this likeness is fleeting, disappearing as quickly as it appears.

In Swarm Light (2010), polished brass rods studded with LEDs descend from the ceiling in three squares. Sensitive to sound, the lights respond to utterances in the gallery space in swarms of illumination that simulate motion. Their patterns are meant to emulate the behavior of a flock of birds. The work Audience (2008) involves a field of mirrors that responds to visitors to the installation. The mirrors recognize physically interesting gestures, pivoting to face their source, as though addressing the individual generating the movement.

Stuart Wood, Florian Ortkrass, and Hannes Koch, the founders and directors of Random International, began collaborating during their studies at the Royal College of Art, in London. Their practice requires extensive levels of collaboration and pulls in a diverse range of individuals—programmers, engineers, visionaries—who contribute their skills to various, often groundbreaking aspects of their work. Together, they generate projects that combine formal elegance, interactivity, and universal themes, contributing to an art historical lineage of artists who deal with human experience, natural phenomena, and the human form.

To view Rain Room documentary please click the arrow on the image above.