MIMMI acted as an emotional gateway to Minneapolis bringing residents and visitors together to experience and participate in the collective mood of the city. In an age when we can be instantaneously connected with one another virtually, while simultaneously distanced from those closest to us physically, MIMMI seeks to challenge this paradox and unify the virtual and physical layers of our community by using technology to visualize the city’s collective moods in a new way, while also reinforcing serendipitous gatherings under the installation. MIMMI is a large, “cloud like” inflatable suspended from a slender structure, and hovering 35 feet above the ground making it visible from blocks around the Minneapolis Convention Center. MIMMI collects and reflects the aggregate mood of Minneapolis, through abstracted colorful light displays and climatic behavior depending on residents' emotions and activity. Whether the city is elated following a Minnesota Twins win or frustrated from the afternoon commute, MIMMI reflects these fluctuations. Everyone can enjoy MIMMI's company and both watch and participate in her changing behavior while enjoying the city and connecting with new places and people!

MIMMI (The Minneapolis Interactive Macro Mood Installation) was chosen by the Minneapolis Convention Center, the City of Minneapolis, and Meet Minneapolis (Minneapolis’ Convention & Visitors Association) as the inaugural winning project for the Creative City Challenge. MIMMI’s design was a collaboration between INVIVIA and Urbain DRC. And I was in charge of developing digital and hardware components.


To understand the city’s mood, MIMMI sources information from local Twitter feeds and uses textual analysis to detect the emotion of those tweets using open source technology. By aggregating the positivity and negativity of tweets in real-time, MIMMI transmits the abstracted emotion of the city to a series of wifi-enabled LED bulbs and integrated water misting system.The low-energy lights, hung inside of the sculpture material and stretching throughout the entire shape, display the mood beginning at sunset. The color of the lights shifts from cool colors (negative) to warm and hot colors (positive) depending on the mood, with rate of the lights’ change depending on the rate of tweets. Water activity occurs during the day through tubing and nozzles embedded in the fabric of the sculpture.


Visitors to the plaza form an integral part of MIMMI’s behavior, as they are able to interact with MIMMI and help affect the mood. If the city mood is particularly “sad” or emotional for any particular reason, visitors to the plaza can come together to lift MIMMI’s (and the city’s collective) spirits, as MIMMI can detect movement at the plaza and include this information in its analytics. The more people present and moving around under the cloud, the more active MIMMI will become, responding with increased lighting or misting depending on the time of day. Dance, high activity and movement will positively affect MIMMI’s mood and misting displays.