New Angles to the Given Water // VR Lounge

Media Space
Media Space

A Virtual-Reality-Programm curated by David Clark (08.02.18-11.02.18)
Thu: 17:00 – 18:30 und 21:00 – 22:00
Fri: 17:00 – 22:00
Sat: 10.02.18, 17:00 – 22:00
Sun: 11.02.18, 17:00 – 18:30 and 20:00 – 22:00
When sticking your head in the Fluffy Filter Bubble of VR, are you the ostrich burying your head in the silicon sands of Planet Hollywood or are you the woke transhuman subject playing ontological whack-a-mole with the gods? The blessings and the curses of this new world are upon us and we need to ask: what is a poor artist to do? After living off a diet of media detritus and off-cuts, we are discovering a new kind of fluff in the head-tracking display, one that might encase us in the dangerous world of the simulacra or put us in the picture and empower our sense of agency in the world. This program of virtual reality artworks is a sampling of recent work that demonstrates different potentials in the medium. This new chapter of expanded (or imploded) media has been facilitated by the rapid development of what is expected to be a widely available technology; however, the standards and common configuration of this new piece of domesticated spectacle have yet to be settled. Artist, tinkerers, briccoleurs, and refugees from the prison house of cinema are finding new ways to contribute to the experiment of deciding what are the distinctive charms of this prescient medium. As we plunge head first into this Fluffy Filter Bubble, artists who work in VR realize that the bubble is not just a metaphor of a contained and exclusive media experience but the actual physical condition of experiencing the work. Perhaps we can all remember (or will remember) the sensation of inserting ourselves into the headset for the first time and discovering the tangible physical sensation that accompanies our first steps into the virtual world. We will, as well, remember the disorienting effect of returning to our senses when we leave this new dreamland. It’s an intoxicating, disorienting, and somewhat guilty pleasure to step inside these virtual worlds and it presents a challenge for artists to grasp this moment of novelty with a response that understands the pleasures, dangers, and pitfalls that accompanies this new medium.

Filmwinter-Palais – Exhibition Area

Filmwinter-Palais

Konrad-Adenauer-Straße 2, 70173 Stuttgart

U-Bahn, Bus: Haltestelle Charlottenplatz

Thursday 08./ Friday 09.02.18
Tzina: Symphony of Longing
Shirin Anlen, Israel 2016, Interactive Virtual Reality
Shirin Anlen’s “Tzina: Symphony of Longing” is a VR documentary that takes us into the run-down Dizengoff Square in Tel Aviv that had occupied an important role in the lives of a number of lonely and marginalized characters. This immersive piece – set in a moment just before the square is to be demolished in 2017 – allows the viewer to wander through the square where you can approach each character and hear personal stories of longing and loneliness in a journey guided by Shirin Anlen’s personal connection to the square. And as each character laments what could have been, the fragile fabric of this reality warps as stories come to life before us. Instead of presenting ‘Virtual Realism’ this world layers the cold architectural rendering with the fragmentary look of ‘volumetric video’ that gives the characters the look of ghosts. The stories are enhanced with objects that swarm the character creating a kind of ‘Virtual Surrealism’.

V-VR – Virtual Virtual Reality
Tender Claws (Danny Cannizzaro and Samantha Gorman), USA 2017, Interactive Game for VR-Headset Google Daydream
V-VR is an interactive game for the VR headset Google Daydream that takes you into a sci-fi world dominated by bored Artificial Intelligent agents who amuse themselves by employing humans to do simple tasks. Inside this virtual world, the viewer puts on virtual VR headsets to move between different worlds where the viewer is introduced to a cast of ever more bizarre AI clients. Secrets about the inner workings of this world are gradually revealed, eventually leading to a device that can vacuum away the different realities and thereby reveal a way to escape impending enslavement. The artist collaborative Tender Claws (Danny Cannizzaro and Samantha Gorman), have created a biting satire of virtual reality that explores our anxieties about a world dominated by Artificial Intelligence. The story propels us to confront the virtual bubble of VR and contemplate our human inadequacies in a world dominated by AI overlords. This is a game born from the imaginations of artists who use satire to make us think about the future of technology.

Saturday 10./Sunday 11.02.18
Collisions
Lynette Wallworth, Australia 2016, 360° Video
Through this expansive and sublime 360° video work, we can appreciate the particular quality of VR to evoke the aesthetic power of the landscape and deliver a new understanding how stories are connected to places. The Australian outback is the setting of the remarkable story of an indigenous elder, Nyarri Morgan of the Martu tribe in the remote Western Australian Pilbara Desert, and his traumatic encounter with western culture. Lynette Wallworth places us inside his world through lingering landscape shots that draw us into the desert world that was largely untouched by western culture in the 1950’s. A dramatic collision of worlds happens when Nyarri witnesses first hand and with no context, an atomic test in the desert. This extraordinary experience is only revisited decades later as the elder Nyarri is able to come to terms with what he saw as a young man. Through our presence in his world, we realize that the value of Nyarri’s perspective of this encounter with the destructive power of the nuclear bomb in a time when the very earth has become strange and alien to western eyes.

The New News
Sarah Rothberg, USA 2017, Virtual Reality, Oculus Rift
Sarah Rothberg surveyed her friends to ask where they got their news and found out that many of her friends primary news source was Facebook. As an artist who works in virtual reality, she understood that Facebook is a big player in the development of VR since it owns Oculus Rift. This got her thinking about the information bubbles that we live in and how news will be shaped by virtual reality in a future. In her new virtual reality piece, The New News, Rothberg has created an imagined version of what news in the future might look like. The piece developed as a live performance in which the artist embodied a cartoon newscaster avatar for live and virtual news stories that were posted on Facebook. This version captures some of the results of this virtual performance.

(Important: Please enter your name on the list at the VR Lounge to reserve a VR viewing date.)

Sonntag 11.02.18, 14:00
Here We Are at the Bay of Intoxicating Discoveries
(Talk, English)
Vor dem Hintergrund einer Auswahl an Arbeiten aus dem Programm „New Angles to Given Water“ wird David Clark über Virtual Reality als Kunstform sprechen. Das Programm zeigt eine Reihe an aktuellen Arbeiten aus dem VR- und 360-VideoBereich und beinhaltet Dokumentar- und Animationsfilmformate sowie traditionelle Filmformate, geht aber auch auf die An- forderungen dieses neuen Mediums ein.