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This article discusses the possibilities for Augmented Reality (AR) as a driver of data based art. The combination of AR and Open Data (in the broadest post-Wikileaks sense) is seen to provide a powerful tool-set for the artist/activist to augment specific sites with a critical, context-specific data layer. Such situated interventions offer powerful new methods for the political activation of sites which enhance and strengthen traditional non- virtual approaches and should be thought of as complementary to, rather than replacing, physical intervention.
I offer as a case study this author’s “NAMAland” project, a mobile artwork which uses Open Data and Augmented Reality to visualise and critique aspects of the Irish financial collapse. The project, overlayed Dublin with an activist derived data-layer which supported and enabled physical interventions, making visible/concrete abstract financial dealings through situating them in real space, enacting a virtual layer of critique which facilitated and catalysed wider debate.
McGarrigle, C. (2013) Augmented Resistance: the possibilities for AR and data driven art. Leonardo Electronic Almanac, Not Here Not There Volume 19 Issue 1, January 2013. pp106-122. doi:10.21427/D78J2Z