A Wall of Mirrors

Interactive video installation

Alternate Link - Vimeo

The concept for 'A Wall of Mirrors' is derived from that of the 'Hall of Mirrors' commonly found at fun-fairs, carnivals or amusement parks. This traditional form of entertainment works by combining sensory confusion and recognisability: the familiar is undermined as the mirrors distort the viewer's reflection; at the same time it is reinforced as the resultant image remains recognisable and responsive to the viewer's movements. 'A Wall of Mirrors' brings this interplay into the digital age, by replacing the traditional mirrors with computers, cameras and projectors.

I have a double purpose in undertaking this project. First I want to advance the possibilities for digital image-making - I would love to see the techniques involved borrowed, pirated, cut and pasted to form new artworks. Second, I want to explore the traditional double functioning of distorting mirrors - the play of the unfamiliar and the recognisable - in contemporary electronic media, thus drawing the ‘hall of mirrors’ into relation with the world of television images, digital manipulation and electronic surveillance. From mass media entertainment to the invisible policing of urban zones, digital images of the self - selves hiding, selves performing, interchangeable selves, selves presenting themselves as unique – are an essential part of everyday experience. What I want to do is to make a simple, ‘reflective’ insertion in this all-enveloping play of the self and its image.  

The design revolves around a single wall in the gallery which is used as the projection surface. A small CCTV style camera is mounted above or in the middle (to be decided) of the projection area. The captured content is then fed into a media server which allows for the image to be manipulated in a number of different ways, arranged in the style of a ‘fractal’ screen and then projected on to the gallery wall.

The fragmented screen is made up of eight different ‘fields’. These fields are each a copy of the live feed from the camera with various effects applied to each in turn. The type of effects applied are; mirrored image, kaleidoscope, inverted colour, projection onto a rotating cube, solarized colour, diagonal wave effect, quantize colour and projection on to a filled sphere.


Figment, Jackson, Mississippi, United States - May '11

NewMedia, Daet, Philippines - February '11

Roadside Attractions, Toronto, Canada - November '10*

Vimeo link to exhibition footage




* Supported by



Copyright © Raoul Simpson Design 2009. This material may not be copied, reproduced or distributed without the written consent of Raoul Simpson Design.