GREENSBORO, N.C. – As a gift to the community, The Public Art Endowment, an initiative of The Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro, is providing a spectacular interactive public art experience in which participants become “projection painters” by having their electronic artwork projected onto the sides of buildings and other large-scale structures throughout the city.

Tagtool - Projection in Belo Horizonte   Tagtool - Projecting on Architecture 2

A series of public workshops will kick off the evening of Sept. 18 downtown and continue through First Friday, Oct. 3, organizers announced today. Tagtool/OMAi: The Greensboro Sessions is a featured highlight of this year’s 17DAYS Festival, hosted by ArtsGreensboro. The series marks the artists’ U.S. debut.

“These public workshops will be unlike anything that has ever occurred in Greensboro,” said Cheryl Stewart of Greensboro, public art consultant for The Public Art Endowment. “These artists are phenomenal and very cutting-edge. People are going to be dazzled when they see local structures light up at night with artwork by the participating public. This is a fun, great activity for individuals and families of all ages, something truly special. The Public Art Endowment is very excited to provide this for the people of Greensboro.”

Greensboro Mayor Nancy Vaughan shared in the excitement. “The City of Greensboro is proud to host this unique interactive art experience,” she said. “Tagtool is an exciting new way to showcase public art and Greensboro’s infrastructure and architecture will serve as the perfect backdrop. I think this is something that the residents of Greensboro will enjoy and adds another layer of entertainment to the ArtsGreensboro 17DAYS Festival.”

The Tagtool Crew, as they like to be called, is part of Austria’s Office of Media and Arts International and includes artists from Vienna, Austria – artist Markus Dorninger, his brother Josef Dorninger and Matthias Fritz. Markus Dorninger is the inventor and designer of Tagtool, an app for tablets and smartphones. Through the Tagtool app, participants create artwork that is displayed on large-scale outdoor settings by way of high-powered projectors.

A version of the Tagtool app will be made available to participants for download free of charge. Although iPads will be available at the workshops, people with their own iPads are encouraged to bring them. The app only works on iPads. People who download the app to their own iPad will be able to use Tagtool for art and animation needs of their own in the future.

Tagtool art projection workshops have taken place in Spain, Germany, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Singapore, Poland, Austria and now Greensboro. Locally, public workshops will occur at venues downtown, including areas adjacent to both Cheesecakes by Alex and the Carolina Theatre, as well as at CityView Apartments, from which artwork will be projected onto the water tower at Bennett College. In addition, public opportunities will be offered on the campus of N.C. A&T University and at Elsewhere Collaborative.                                               

The Tagtool Crew also will work with area school children through programs of the Greensboro Children’s Museum.

A full schedule of Tagtool public workshops for Greensboro is available for download. Click here

Tagtool - Projecting on Architecture 3    Tagtool - Storytelling

“Kudos to The Public Art Endowment for bringing the Tagtool project to Greensboro for this arts residency during 17DAYS Festival,” said ArtsGreensboro President & CEO Tom Philion. “Colorful art will come to life all over structures throughout Greensboro, a public demonstration of new interactive technology, combined with limitless artistic applications that are really cool!”

In 2008, The Community Foundation launched The Public Art Endowment with a seed gift of $25,000 from Schell Bray Aycock Abel & Livingston in honor of the firm’s 25th anniversary. The program’s mission is to help preserve and expand Greensboro’s sense of community by making possible the long-term and permanent placements of significant public artworks throughout the city.

Since its inception, the endowment has made possible long-term, temporary installations of works by sculptors Dennis Oppenheim, Peter Shire, James Surls, Vollis Simpson and Evan Lewis. In 2009, a permanent sculpture was gifted through the endowment by Jane and Richard Levy of Greensboro and the employees of their company, HBD, Inc. Last year, The Public Art Endowment announced a $1-million grant by the Edward M. Armfield, Sr. Foundation to commission a monumental aerial sculpture by Boston artist Janet Echelman to anchor the new Carolyn and Maurice LeBauer City Park.

The Tagtool series marks the first time that the endowment has offered a short-term interactive art project for the community.

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About Markus Dorninger and Tagtool: Click here