cmoa gulf tower project

Artist Antoine Catala invites us to reflect on how images make us feel, especially as we see more and more of them every day through internet-connected devices. In the lead-up to his new CMOA exhibition, Antoine Catala: Distant Feel, opening February 14, 2015, we’ll use Pittsburgh’s Gulf Tower beacon as a giant mood ring, reflecting responses to the city’s shared Instagram images.

Watch the colors on the beacon, February 11–13. We’ll analyze the region's Instagram commentary and determine whether it is more positive or negative in nature. Using two competing colors, green and red, CMOA will display the current levels of positivity and negativity in real-time, as sentiment changes. Watch the tower’s beacon or see the graphic below for a visual representation of the analysis, a timeline of Pittsburgh Instagram images, and more information about Catala's Distant Feel.

The Instagram images below represent a sample of those with the most positive (top) and most negative (bottom) commentary in the past 30 seconds. We’ve included a score so you can track how each has been rated by our algorithms.

Participate! Follow our Instagram feed, @thecmoa, for images, and share your own. Tag your photos with #cmoa and #distantfeel to join our online conversation directly. Or, just consider, share, and respond to images in your own feed. If you’re in the Pittsburgh region, your comments and those of your followers will affect the beacon.

CMOA’s Gulf Tower project is supported by Larry Walsh and Rugby Realty.


The following chart displays a real-time analysis of the positivity and negativity of Pittsburgh Instagram comments. The green line represents the amount of positive expression in the comment text, and the red line represents the negative.

current tower status


Related Exhibition

Antoine Catala: Distant Feel (part of the Hillman Photography Initiative)

Antoine Catala: Distant Feel, the first solo US museum exhibition of the New York–based French artist, presents a new body of work in sculpture, photography, and video that addresses the way that images provoke emotion, especially as they travel virtual and physical distances via the internet. This project is a co-commission with the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, and will be presented on the occasion of their 2015 Triennial (February 25–May 24, 2015). Learn more…