Digital Zoetrope

(collective) Troika

Digital Zoetrope ,
Co-workers & Funding
  • troika decode
    333 × 375
Troika was commissioned by onedotzero to create a custom installation and visual identity around the theme of this year’s festival 'Citystates'. Opting to create an installation and identity that integrate into each other, Troika designed a modern digital zoetrope as the cornerstone of the identity. The idea for the zoetrope comes directly from the festivals 'adventures in motion' payoff and this year’s theme 'Citystates'. Revolving around themes of urban exploration and sensory impressions emerging from the different speeds we traverse our cities at, whether walking, cycling or driving, opening up new visual, tactic and sonic layers to the city.


We wanted to create a container that both celebrated the heritage of motion arts as well as its digital present while affording us a very literal medium for the content – the idea of altered states through motion. From there the idea of a hi-tech zoetrope arose.To illustrate the idea of disparate images coming together Troika deconstructed legendary type designer Wim Crouwel´s Gridnik typeface for the zoetrope, breaking the typeface into verticals, horizontals and diagonals which merge into letters and words at speed.
  • genres
    • installations
      • virtual reality (VR)
Technology & Material
Installation Requirements / Space
he zoetrope itself is an updated model of the original zoetrope designed by William Horner in 1834. The original zoetrope uses light and motion to animate individual images or frames, much like traditional film that creates a similar effect by showing a rapid succession of frames causing the illusion of motion. Whilst traditional zoetropes commonly display small loops of figurative animations, Troika’s zoetrope works from an abstract pattern that magically starts to form words when it is lit with the right frequency. Building on this concept, Troika created a state of the art and unique prototype, designing and programming all components from scratch. By controlling the frequencies of rapidly blinking LED lights at the center of the zoetrope, it is possible to display different words or alternating patterns depending on the speed of the flashing lights. The viewer cannot see the flickering of the lights due to an effect known as persistence of vision whereby the eye retains a visual image for a fraction of a second after the source has been removed.
Exhibitions & Events