History of 360° View Paintings

Mobile Cyclorama is a project that refers back to a precursor
pictorial medium of immersion technologies: Panoramic painting.


Invention of Panoramic Painting

The concept of panoramic painting was conceived by Robert Barker, an English portrait painter of the 18th century. Barker used to display his creations on enormous cylindrical surfaces recreating a huge 360 painting.
These constructions were known as Cycloramas.


Cycloramas became a success

Barker's Panorama was hugely successful and spawned a series of "immersive" panoramas: the Museum of London's curators found mention of 126 panoramas that were exhibited between 1793 and 1863. Most major European cities featured more than one purpose-built structure hosting panoramas . In order to experience scenes that might otherwise have only existed in one’s imagination, the panorama virtually transported spectators to famous cities such as Constantinople and Paris, for a fraction of the cost of actual travel.


End of Panoramic Paintings

As time went by, the novelty of the Cyclorama as an artistic spectacle dissipated and subsequently, this media suffered the decline of sponsors with the arrival of film and photography. The rotunda in Leicester Square closed in 1863 and the entertainment form suffered its greatest decline in patronage with the advent of moving pictures.


Google Street View

Google Street View is a technology featured in Google Maps and Google Earth that provides panoramic views from positions along many streets in the world. It was launched in 2007 in several cities in the United States, and has since expanded to include cities and rural areas worldwide.

Today Google Street View replaces the Cyclorama original goal in order to access to distant geographical locations. Its photographs provide us with notions of reality about existing sites in the world.


Google Street View Paintings

Raul Moyado, using Google Street View technology, created a series of virtual paintings that manage to expand the two-dimensional boundaries of traditional pictorial medium. Through web programming as digital canvas support, the nature of the painting is reconfigured in a new format of interactive visualization which enables the viewer to be positioned within the painting and explore its surroundings .


Mobile Cyclorama

Metapanoramas evolved into Mobile Cyclorama by which the project’s author creates an application for mobile screens. This mobile app explores poetic atmospheres of remote sites and pictorial alternative realities depicting the artist personal microcosm. Landscapes become thus, the means for internal search which explores the artist’s memory and subjectivity. Such pictorial space can only be discovered with the gesture and action of the viewer by moving the device and framing.

This project was supported by the National Fund for Culture and Arts of México (FONCA)

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