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Android/iOS app dedicated to the McKeldin Fountain in Baltimore has interviews from Otakon attendees.

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For all the attendees who attended Otakon in Baltimore and remember the McKeldin Fountain that was a popular backdrop for cosplay photoshoots, there's an augmented-reality app that is dedicated specifically to the fountain and there's interviews of Otakon attendees that's part of this app: https://baltimorefishbowl.com/stories/with-augmented-reality-app-artists-virtually-revive-the-demolished-mckeldin-fountain/


Eighteen months ago, construction crews reduced the Brutalist concrete fountain at the heart of the Inner Harbor’s McKeldin Square plaza to rubble, making way for green space and some additional seating at the corner of Pratt and Light streets. The effort was led by the Downtown Partnership, whose leaders said the structure had become an eyesore.

Gone is the 35-year-old sharp-edged edifice that played host to curious wanderers traversing its walkways and people wading into its waters, and served as a backdrop to countless demonstrations, from pinnacle events like the 2015 protests of police after Freddie Gray’s death and the 2011 Occupy campouts to weekly protests.

But it lives again—if you have a screen handy. Just search “Nonument 01” on your app store.

The McKeldin Fountain is the first public monument to be virtually memorialized as part of the Nonument project. Its re-creation in the form of an augmented-reality app was spearheaded by four artists–Martin Bricelj Baraga and Neja Tomšič, both of the Museum of Transitory Art in Slovenia, and Lisa Moren and Jaimes Mayhew, both of Baltimore—and a collection of architects, developers and others.

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County’s Imaging Research Center and the Saul Zaentz Innovation Fund at Johns Hopkins University provided grant funding, and local firm BaltiVirtual built the app.

Beyond being able to relive the experience of standing in front of the fountain by viewing it through their phone’s camera, a user can watch interviews with 18 people sharing stories from the structure’s three-plus decades of life, ranging from tales of protest to fond memories. Subjects include former Mayor Sheila Dixon, local architect Fred Scharmen, a member of Baltimore Hoop Love, local rappers DDm and Eze Jackson, the anti-war group Women in Black, participants from the Otakon anime convention, protesters from the 2011 Occupy demonstrations, ACLU of Maryland senior attorney David Rocah and others.

“It’s diverse,” says Moren, a professor of visual arts at UMBC.


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