Science and art: creating new immersive environments

What happens when art meets technology? Meet two companies using their specialties in photography and virtual reality to bring viewers inside the works of Damien Hirst and Zaha Hadid.

The Serpentine Galleries in London and the Gagosian Gallery in Los Angeles are now pushing the envelope on the traditional art gallery experience. Collaborating with Prudence Cuming Associates and Novelab the institutions are translating The Veil Paintings by Hirst and Early Drawings and Paintings of Zaha Hadid into immersive environments and movies.

What is interesting in this new spark of collaboration and innovation is shifting the perspective that an institution’s sole responsibility is to collect and showcase art. The premise is now focused on the viewer and creating compelling content that talks about the experimentation and groundbreaking ideas that still resonate today.

“The paintings were the medium of choice for Zaha to break away from the ‘traditional’ architectural toolkit and to introduce a radical and innovative viewing, and to challenge the discourse,” said Helmut. “VR is the reciprocal digital platform today in which we want to show – and connect to – these ideas behind or inside the paintings.”

For The Veiling Painting, the team was made up of specialist photographers, filmmakers and VFX artists, then used a specialist visual-effects software called Flame to start stitching together each shot, creating 3D versions of each blob of paint. Allowing the visual effects creative team to “push the boundaries between reality and virtual reality, creating art inside art,” said Stuart Trood, CEO of HENI.

What these two instances are showing is that new industries which have been traditionally secluded from each other are colliding to create a more meaningful and entertaining way to interact, learn and be exposed to art, architecture, and design.

 

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