Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) & Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
AHRC Creative Economy Programme Research and Partnership Development call for the Next Generation of Immersive Experiences
Total value of project
Associate Professor Ruth Gibson (Principal Investigator), Coventry University; Professor Joseph DeLappe (Co-Investigator), Abertay University; Dr Darshana Jayemanne (Co-Investigator), Abertay University; Bruno Martelli, Gibson/Martelli; Scott Kildall, Xenoform Labs; Alexa Pollmann, Peut-Porter; Dr Dustin Freeman, Escape Character; Dr Nick Lambert, Ravensbourne University; Dr Alex Woolner, AdsReality; Dr Lauren Wright; Siobhan Davies Studios; Paul Callaghan, British Council
Duration of project
01/02/2018 - 31/08/2018
The 'Reality Remix' project brings together an interdisciplinary team of experts - a fashion designer, artists, researchers, an interactive designer, a software engineer, computer scientist, and a choreographer to address challenges and opportunities that emergent technologies bring to content creation and interaction methods in Mixed, Augmented and Virtual Reality.
The participants debate, create and share understandings to reveal insights into the new arena of immersion. The team hosted three Research Salons under the call themes of Memory, Place & Performance, to enhance user experience and produce new understandings and insights through the creation of proof of concept/prototypes in the development of next generation immersive experiences. The project tested a variety of prototypes culminating in dissemination events at Ravensbourne University and Siobhan Davies Dance where the research findings were shared with the public.
The aim is to enhance the interaction experience for audiences to produce new experiences which are intellectually and socially engaging and can, through a re-engagement with the complexities of encountering 'new spaces' generate new understandings about our relationship with our perceptions within the world and how the physical body is reconceptualised and re-encountered in mixed reality environments.
The interdisciplinary project will be of benefit to researchers and practitioners in a wide range of academic disciplines from specialists in movement - both performance and media arts based to those working with digital technologies, simulation and games, to social scientists interesting in understanding modes of behaviour in virtual environments, serious gaming and to cultural theorists interested in the creation of new spaces.
The project will benefit a range of external users. It builds on longstanding relationships between the participants. The project's cultural, social and educational impact will be delivered through two dissemination events and the project blog Reality Remix.
The project beneficiaries for non-academics include:
- The dissemination event at Siobhan Davies Studios (SDS) exposed the project to the dance professional community, addressing themes of performance, memory and place in relation to immersion. An investigative arts organisation, Siobhan Davies Dance stimulates new thinking based on a contemporary definition of choreography and this event gave guests an opportunity to try the prototypes following on from Gibson’s taster event, Virtual Reality ‘Doing Day’ Dance/Digital Workshop earlier in the year. Gibson has been regularly invited to speak to the dance/art community on the subject of performance and new media both in the UK and abroad, lectures which span academia, creative economies and industry.
Creative Economy in the UK and beyond
- Project Partners include Paul Callaghan, Programme Manager, Games & Interactive, at the British Council. He develops new collaborations, innovation and enterprise with rapidly changing creative and cultural industries worldwide. The insights generated during the project have fed into new ways of collaborating, working and avenues for commissioning for the communities of future leaders that the British Council nurtures.
- Project Partners include Lauren Wright at Siobhan Davies Dance - forward looking dance and theatre companies may wish to expand their practice into these new performance 'spaces' opened up by the project.
Invited to the dissemination events are also curators and arts programmers at galleries and festivals who wish to gain further understanding of next generation immersive environments and how they can be used to create artistic experiences and engage a widening audience — both Gazelli Art House and Gossamer Fog galleries have recently begun exhibiting virtual reality artworks.
Project Partners include Ads Reality, who develop immersive and augmented reality experiences and are looking for fresh ideas and techniques that can be developed into future commercial projects.
- Invited guests to the dissemination events included Caroline Moore and her Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) Arts Programme colleagues, who have been actively seeking interactive and immersive experiences to use with long term, or isolated, young patients in the Hospital. (Gibson/Martelli have recently been artist researchers-in-residence at GOSH developing an augmented reality project for the patients to examine the benefits of performance in a clinical settings: www.gosh.nhs.uk/parents-and-visitors/gosh-arts/news/gibsonmartelli-great-ormond-street-hospital)
- Members of the public were able to engage in new artistic immersive experiences, experience new forms of performance — it is clear from the media attention that there is widespread public interest in this field.
Academia and Creative Economy
A dissemination event at Ravensbourne contextualised the project in relation to new media, research and contributes to their overall research culture. Project Partner Nick Lambert, Head of Research at Ravensbourne in the VASARI Research Centre. Outside Ravensbourne, as chair of the Computer Arts Society (CAS), Nick is well placed to both foster new collaborations in the short and medium term whilst whilst developing opportunities to disseminate the project at future events, the Electronic Visualisation in the Arts conference to give one example.
- Gibson has presented at both the 2016 and 2017 VR UK conferences held at Ravensbourne, which are aimed at technologists, artists and content creators.
- Reality Remix Project Blog
- 'Doing Day: Dance/Digital’: at Siobhan Davies Studios - Sunday 4 February 2018 10.30am-4.30pm
- Reality Remix Showcase: Ravensbourne University, Greenwich Digital Peninsula, London - Friday 27 July 2-5pm
- Reality Remix: Prototype Play: at The Roof Studio, Siobhan Davies Studios, St Georges Road, London- Saturday 28 July 2-5pm
- ‘Automated Away’ Human - Computer Interaction Seminar (Seminar on People, Computers, And Design): William Gates Computer Science Building, Stanford University, Palo Alto - Friday 19 October 2018 11.30 - 12.30
- VR Salon at Xenoform Labs: 3338 23rd Street San Francisco - Saturday 20 October 12 - 5pm
- ‘Altered states, Alternate Landscapes’ Professional Screen Dance Lab Light Moves Festival of Screendance: at Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick - Monday 12 - Wednesday 14 November 2018 10am — 5pm
- ‘Reality Remix Presentation and showcase’ AHRC/EPSRC Next Generation of Immersive Experiences Showcase Event: University of York, Department of Theatre, Film and Television - Tuesday 4 December 2018 9am — 5pm
- Video: Pitch
- Video: Presentation
Presentations/Papers from the team:
- ”An embodied turn: game studies across worlds and bodies" - Panel at DiGRA 2018, Turin, Italy.
- ”Chronotypology: a comparative approach to videogame narrative" - paper at Literature and Videogames, Beyond Stereotypes, 2018.
- ”Game Over Man, Game Over!: Looking at the alien in film and videogames" - peer reviewed journal article, Arts 7(3), 2018.
- ”Ludic Homunculus: Figuring interfaces beyond the avatar”: presentation at Ian Gouldstone’s exhibition IN THE SHADE BUT NOT THE SHADOW, Sleepcenter Gallery, NYC, 2018.
- ”Where are all the cli-fi games?" paper at "Future Perfect Conference”: Data & Society Institute, NYC, 2018.