Das virtuelle Atelier (The virtual art studio)

“Das virtuelle Atelier” (“The virtual art studio”) was a program dedicated to interactive painting within “Piazza virtuale”. Two callers could use the push buttons on their phones to operate various painting tools in order to paint on the television screen. In addition to a round or square brush of different thicknesses, various alternatives were available: rectangle and circle (filled and empty), a line tool and an airbrush function. The color selection included 32 colors. All in all, the program surface, handling and selection options were reminiscent of graphic software of the time, especially “Paint” (formerly “Paintbrush”) by Microsoft, which is still known today.
Starting in August 1992, the two callers could also talk to each other during the broadcast. Every now and then there was an active, joint creation of pictures. A recurring behavior that participants also showed was drawing letters and words to convey short messages.

Video clip of “Virtuelles Atelier”

Drafts and prototype

Left: These notebook entries by Benjamin Heidersberger show the first sketches of ideas for a “Tic Tac Toe” game on TV from April 1991, controlled by the touch-tone phone.
Middle: Demonstration of a painting programme in the segment “School”.
Right: Another early prototype of the virtual art studio

Screen shots of “Das virtuelle Atelier”