A Virtual Reality Exhibition
A PROJECT BY CHLOE LEE
Press play to experience
this site with sound.
Our physical surroundings, a world of objects, bodies, and structures, are not as solid as they seem to be. In the virtual reality exhibition, Temporal World, visitors are invited to explore a virtual world that emphasizes the emphermality and impermanence of our environments and the similarly shifting nature of memory, playfully encouraging them to engage their senses in new ways. These new ways of engaging, and in turn understanding, help create a more nuanced and complex understanding of our interactions and, often invisible, dynamics within our everyday environments.
While wearing a custom haptic jacket which sends vibrational feedback through the body, participants enter the Oculus headset to find a virtual world composed of 3D scanned sights and soundscapes of Berlin. These immersive environments are made of particles that shift and swarm according to the user’s movements and interactions. The faster one navigates through space, the more chaotic particle movements become. Forms deform, the discernible becomes indiscernible. As a result, stillness and moving slowly is necessary to take in and engage with the intricacies of this environment.
Reactions within the virtual environment are visible not only in the morphing particle systems, but also heard through the evolving spatial sound, and felt through live translations of the sound from the virtual world to vibrational feedback patterns sent to the haptic jacket. This emphasis on the touch experience is present while exploring the virtual world, and continues as visitors create their own sound and haptic experiences.
Inspired by the music of Ismail, a Turkish nomad and flutist who I met in Kreuzberg.
HAPTIC JACKET MOTOR PLACEMENT
MEMORY PALACE HAPTIC JACKET, PROTOTYPE 1.0
Jacket translates sound from the virtual world to vibrational feedback on the user's body on 42 points on the upper body, including the neck, arms, finger tips. The design also includes a bass belt.
Developing interactive elements in VR for the touch experience
Chloé uses color, collage, and drawing to create densely layered, moving and still images which explore where digital and analog worlds meet. Her most recent fascination has been with 3D and VR environments and how these new spaces can be used to explore memory, identity, and how we make meaning.
Chloé is a 2021 Creative Arts Fulbright grantee for a VR project she is developing in Germany called Memory Palace. She is an Associate Member of the research group Object Space Agency at Matters of Activity Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.
This experience is made possible by the projects »Object Space Agency« and »Cutting« at Matters of Activity.
Experience design and art direction by Chloé Lee; virtual reality experience development by Lucas Martinic; haptic jacket design and fabrication by Dru Blumensheid of Bumesi; haptic jacket hardware design by Mohammed Fardin Gholami.
Special thanks to Victor Minces for advising on spectrogram sound integration to optimize instrument sound creation; Isaac Munoz for advising on sound design for virtual reality; Kara Lynch for support on development of experience design and project management.