An interactive telematic project by Charlotte Gould and Paul Sermon from the University of Salford, developed and presented during their residency at the Museu d'Art Contemporani de Barcelona MACBA Study Centre from 1st March to 31st May 2011

Exhibited between MadLab Manchester and Barcelona on May 28th 2011 and between the MACBA Study Centre Barcelona and the Umbro Design Space Manchester for the FutureEverything Festival on April 13th 2011

For more information please visit the project blog which documents the entire practice-based research programme ----------

On the evening of Saturday 28th May audiences in Manchester and Barcelona were joined together on screen for the first time to create their own interactive generative cinema experience complete with sets, costumes and props. Employing the scenographic techniques of Alfred Hitchcock the artists created a miniature film set in which the remote audiences acted and directed their own movie, transporting participants into animated environments and sets where they created their own unique narrative.

Members of the audience in Barcelona were able to decide on the context of this interactive telematic performance by using an iphone app to select between seven different background sets, which consisted of live webcams scenes and animated environments. The participants in Barcelona could also stand in front of a choma-key blue screen and position themselves within these stage sets. Members of the audience in Manchester were then transported into this telepresent experience via their own blue-box studio to join the ‘players’ in Barcelona as they journeyed through the ‘Seven stages of man’.

This immersive interactive installation pushes the boundaries of telematic art and generative cinema, combining the possibilities of telepresent performance with miniature scale-models and animated scenes for the development of audience participation that explores the way narratives can be revealed through a subtle interplay between artist, audience and environment.

Documentary video of All the world’s a screen

Selected line-out video clips from from All the world’s a screen

The seven stages of man at the MACBA Study Centre

All the world’s a screen was an interactive telematic project created by Paul Sermon and Charlotte Gould from the University of Salford, developed during their residency at the Museum of Contemporary Art Barcelona Study Centre and their studio residency at, a visual arts production centre in Poblenou, Barcelona. For more information on ‘All the world’s a screen’ please visit the project blog which documents the entire practice-based research and development method throughout the residency programme from March to May 2011.

Special thanks

To the team at MadLab, including MadLab directors Dave Mee and Hwa Young, project coordinator John Boothe and designer Sam France from the University of Salford. The team at, including director Teresa Badía, Jovan Cvetkovski, Núria Marquès, Álex Posada and Joana Cervià. Further thanks to Gary Peploe and John Boothe for the coordination and presentation of ‘The seven stages of man’ at the Umbro Design Space for the FutureEverything Festival in Manchester, to Rod Martin for software development and to director Mela Dávila, Ariadna Pons and Marta Vega at the MACBA Study Centre for their support in hosting the first experiments and tests in Barcelona.

All the world's a screen

Between 4pm and 6pm on the 28th May the MadLab audience in Manchester joined participants at in Barcelona, bringing a mix of eccentric players, creative interventions and surreal improvised performances in spontaneous interactive moments of hilarity, emotional exchanges and thought provoking dialogues. Whilst audience members in Barcelona had the opportunity to construct sets and edit scenes, participants at MadLab in Manchester replied with improvised props and costumes to provoke a juxtaposed montage of impromptu performances and dialogues. This live telematic performance was presented at in Poblenou as part of their open studio season.

The seven stages of man

With key references to the telematic stage, user generated performances and the dramaturgy of networked communication this project references Shakespeare's infamous line 'All the world's a stage' with the seven rooms of the model film set relating to the seven ages of man presented in Shakespeare's 'As You Like It', providing a metaphysical backdrop to steer the unfolding plot.

Linked between the MACBA Study Centre in Barcelona and the Umbro Design Space in Manchester we made our first experiments and tests with 'The seven stages of man’ as part of the FutureEverything Festival on Friday 13th May 2011.

The audience in Barcelona selected scenes on an ipnone and arranged miniature characters and props within the model set in order to chroma-key their fellow performers into the telematic scenes. 'The seven stages of man' include four live webcam scenes and three animated rooms that provide the audience with further interactive environments through which they travel to discover the stages of infancy, childhood, the lover, the worker, justice, pantaloon and the return to second childhood.

-Media Downloads:

-Concept and proposal pdf

-All the world's a screen press release pdf

-The seven stages of man press release pdf

-El Cultural review 6th May 2011 pdf


All the world's a screen research project blog

MadLab Manchester Barcelona

MACBA Study Centre Barcelona

FutureEverything Festival

University of Salford

Charlotte Gould's web site

Paul Sermon's web site


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