New art installation reflects city's mood

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June 10, 2013 // UPDATED 1:25 pm - June 18, 2013
By: Sarah McKenzie
Sarah McKenzie
Includes a VIDEO of MIMMI

A new art installation on the plaza of the Minneapolis Convention Center designed to reflect the mood of the city was unveiled Thursday night.

The Minneapolis Interactive Macro-Mood Installation (MIMMI) uses information from local Twitter feeds to analyze the collective mood of the city. The technology, in part, uses open-source data from researchers at the University of Texas and the University of Auckland.

MIMMI is a large inflatable sculpture that hovers 30 feet above the Convention Center’s plaza. It creates light displays at night and mists during the day. Visitors to the installation also have the power to impact MIMMI — the more activity (dancing, etc.) near the cloud, the more it will mist or increase its emission of light depending on the time of day.

The sculpture has low-energy lights inside, which emit light at sunset. If the city's tweets are more negative in tone, the sculpture will reveal cooler colors, and if the city's spirits lift, the sculpture will showcase warmer colors. During the day, if the city has more happy tweets, the sculpture will release more water than when the tweets are more negative. 

INVIVIA, a collaboration of design and technology firms in Cambridge, Mass., and Minneapolis, created the vision for MIMMI and were selected the winner of the city’s Creative City Challenge Art in the Plaza competition. The installation will be on display through the fall. The team was awarded a $50,000 commisson from the Convention Center, which commissioned the project, said Kristen Montag, marketing communications manager for Meet Minneapolis Convention & Visitors Association.

A Secret City event is planned for June 22 and will feature musicians, artists, dancers on bikes, ping pong players and many others for performances and events at three downtown locations and the Midtown Greenway. Events will run 6 p.m.–10:30 p.m.

Other highlights include: 
— A freeway underpass by the Basilica will feature art and performances.
— Video artists will project ideas for city spaces on buildings along Hennepin.
— Block E will have a mix of art, design and theater, including Made Here installations.
— There will be ping pong tables, a bicycle ballet and many other activities near MIMMI at the Convention Center Plaza.
— Aztec dancers will perform at the Basilica of St. Mary.
— Mini golf will be available until midnight at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden.
— There will be free performances at the Brave New Workshop on Hennepin.
— The Midtown Greenway will be lit up by the Greenway Glow, an illuminated arts and night bike ride sponsored by the Midtown Greenway Coaliton.

For more information go to Minneapolis.org/mimmi and Minneapolis.org/secretcity. People are encouraged to tweet to interact with MIMMI by using the hashtag #mimmi.