Above the Surface

Could technology help us to stop wasteful consumerism? May it lead to a different way of seeing already existing objects around us? Or will it harm our environment?  Above The Surface is an Augmented Reality (AR) sculpture which proposes a new way of seeing, consuming and (re)producing objects. Based on a year long R&D commission by Collusion in Cambridge, the interactive artwork uses custom build AR goggles, recycled plastic as triggers and 3d printed objects to immerse the audience into a future in which technology and materials live in sync to create new ways of sustainably merging together. 
The visitor is looking through AR goggles and sees digital skins hovering over the futuristic constellation of 5 objects, representing essential human needs: sleep, food, water, air and shelter.
Overproduction is the second biggest polluter on our planet, a new way of seeing could help us to re-use objects rather than buying and accumulating more and more. The interactive 5-minute storytelling piece asks whether the digital world may be the future of sustainable consumption or if it will lead to negative effects, such as another billboardfor advertisement, another platform for hacking or the loss of important and healthy tactility.

“This is mesmerising and thought provoking” one of the 1700 visitors at the showcase in Cambridge expressed. The research involved talking to different technology institutes, such as Magic Leap or Cambridge College, as well as experimenting with recycled plastic material from Smile Plastics and the DIY Augmented Reality headset by Leap Motion.

DATE: 2019
DIMENSION: 4m x 4m x 4m
MATERIALS: recycled plastic , 3d printing, video
TECHNOLOGIES: Unity, Cinema4D, Leap Motion, projection
SUPPORTED BY: Arts Council, UK; Collusion,Cambridge
EXHIBITION: Hervision Tateexchange at TATE MODERN, London; Collusion Showcase, Cambridge


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