The Virtual Reality Project

Christopher Matthew Orchard (Artist), Sophie Kurylowicz (Artist), James Farley (Artist), Jacob Raupach (Artist)

Research output: Non-textual outputs, including Creative WorksCreative Works - Live Performance


During the Underbelly Arts Lab, Greg Pritchard and The Ronalds researched and developed a series of actions for 8 artists to perform when prompted by the festival audience. Festival goers were able to use these prompts to communicate directly with the artists through a social media kiosk during the festival. The live element of the work meant that festival goers and those who logged in online saw their interaction with the artists in real-time as the artists respond (or not) to the requests. After the initial testing during The Lab, the final work for the Festival involved 4 chosen artists going about their day, using a recording device to stream video to 4 projectors on Cockatoo Island via the web. These streams were also broadcast live on this website to allow viewers all over the world to enjoy the work. The audience at the festival had access to the social media kiosk, 4 tablets that are fixed on site in front of each projection screen. The tablets displayed a selection of buttons that represented a given prompt that when pressed notified the artist in real-time to perform a given task or action. That task was as simple as waving to the camera, but also allowed for direct interaction between the viewer and the artist, where the artist could reward the viewer for their participation and fully utilised the live element of the work. This project was an opportunity to test cutting edge use of current technologies and investigate new ways to include the audience in shaping the outcome of performance works. My Investigation as an Artist (Chris): Through an expression of self in generating a proxy body the Internet seemingly becomes a superficially perfect second-life to program an enduring remembrance, a form of creative immortality. This is in stark contrast to the reality that the encoding of one's thoughts is subject to a great deal of uncertainty, variability and unsympathetic mutability. In light of digital consciousness as supplementation of real consciousness the absurdity of true existence plays directly into the open hands of the volatility of raw-data and its consequent irrationality. The digital realm is a territory that offers memoriam in perpetuity but due to its own inherent mortality delivers uncertainty in droves and in light of this we must assume faith in this technological transcendence if we are to leave an online epitaph and ultimately allow ourselves to indulge our mortality through network connectivity. It is however a reality of living via technological prosthesis that "underneath the cycles of ups and downs is an inarticulate sense of disappointment and failure".
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationWagga Wagga, New South Wales
PublisherUnderbelly Arts
Media of outputOnline
SizeLive streaming as part of art festival
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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