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Fahrenheit 204 (Neff Hall)

Posted by absolutelyape on September 12, 2008

Ambient Content – a new form of interior design, a moving painting, a new category of entertainment.

It’s essentially moving art on your television screen, set to soothing music. Just like an aesthetically beautiful piece of art or music, it has the capacity to alter your mood (calm you down, wind you up, whatever). It’s a blend of art forms to form an atmosphere for your home or office.

Sounds like a pretty innovative (yet entirely simple) concept.

Why do I get a little bit sick when I learn about it, then?

Well… have you read Fahrenheit 451? It reminds me of that. Yes, it can be relaxing… and I believe in visual art. But it’s a little sickening to think about how Ambient could be on everyone’s television, all the time. It’s distracting, it draws you in… it’s not the same as having a static painting on the wall or listening to a song in the background. It’s more than that. It’s a lot more to consume. And it’s designed for pleasure. AND it can and will include branding, which is a whole other concern.

Marc Kempter (the creator) says that people are sick of their black, empty televisions. They want something on it besides “people screaming at one another on CNN.”

Yuck. I think about how we, as a culture, feel the need to continuously consume media in some sort of way. I’m not an outlier to this – I’m blogging right now with three other tabs open in Firefox – but maybe the point where our empty, black television makes us feel lonely… maybe that’s the point where we should be talking to another person, walking or riding or driving around our community, forming relationships with people…

Kempter says he sees Ambient going everywhere – offices, entire walls of buildings and homes…

How obsessed are we with beauty? It has to be everywhere, all the time. Some of the Ambient stuff includes just pretty people – talking, acting, whatever – is that really ambient media, or is it a way to satisfy our lust for pretty things?

One Response to “Fahrenheit 204 (Neff Hall)”

  1. Thanks for that commentary. What you wrote was thought provoking and exactly along the lines of what I’ve been thinking about lately, just stated better.

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