Monster in Istanbul

2013 Social Public Art

This project realized a Monster by converting a public display of Beşiktaş Square in Istanbul, into a Monster which is showing placards generated randomly from real-time tweets tweeted in Istanbul. Plus, the Monster was connected to also a facade of Ars Electronica Center Linz. This project was realized under the project Connecting Cities program.

The Connecting Monsters Project is an artistic project to create Monsters, which are activated by the words of ordinary people living in Istanbul and Linz, on symbolic media facades in these two cities. These Monsters will act like mediums, conveying the mood of each city to people in both places. Developments in information technologies
such as the Internet and social media have given us previously unimaginable access to and insight into the daily lives of individuals. Traditionally, conveying controlled information via mass media to people influenced their relationships to information and society. Nowadays it is individuals who are voicing and conveying their opinions to the world at large, with no time delay. What collective power do these individuals have?

In the Connecting Monsters Project, Monsters on public screens at Beşiktaş Square in Istanbul and the Ars Electronica Center in Linz will hold up placards bearing words from Twitter tweets for passersby to see. If someone reacts to a word, the Monster interacts with them. The Monster in Linz shows words tweeted in Linz on the façade, and its body assimilates the words and the AEC visitors. Both Monsters regularly visit the façade in the other city, where they communicate the real-time mood—based on the collective words tweeted in each city—to the people. People watching the Mon- ster will probably sense the flow of power coming through the Monster from another place.

The 1651 book Leviathan, by Thomas Hobbes, is concerned with the structure of society and legitimate government. Monsters are created very differently in the media age today. This project aims to provoke discussions about the collective power of society, and of individuals, as visualized in the Monsters.

Connecting Monsters (2013) from h.o on Vimeo.

Connecting Monsters (2013-) from h dot o on flickr.


Selected Exhibition
  • 11.2013 – Amber Festival, Istanbul / Turkey + Linz / Austria
  • 09.2013 – Connecting Cities, Istanbul / Turkey + Linz / Austria


Chief: Naohiro Hayaishi, Junichi Yura

Concept: Hideaki Ogawa + Junichi Yura + Naohiro Hayaishi + Emiko Ogawa

Connecting Monster System: Naohiro Hayaishi

Monster in Linz: Junichi Yura

Monster in Istanbul: Naohiro Hayaishi

Drawings animation: Emiko Ogawa, Naohiro Hayaishi

Art Direction: Hideaki Ogawa

Support & coordination by Ars Electronica Futurelab (curation: Christopher Lindinger, project management: Veronika Pauser, Technical support: Peter Holzkorn)


coming soon