‘Happily Contained’: A VR Art Piece at Art Night 2018

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The virtual reality industry is growing at a fast pace, with more people trying it out and companies from diverse sectors implementing it into their work. Now, more than ever, VR is taking hold of the art world, allowing individuals to immerse themselves in new visual experiences.

A ‘must-try’ VR experience is Miao Ying’sHappily Contained’, co-commissioned by dsl collection and Art Night and collaborated on by Mbryonic, Somewhere Else and MMCD Studio. Through the medium of VR and Internet aesthetics, Ying depicts a sinister world of firewalls and Internet monsters that represent diverse concerns in digital society such as privacy issues, tapping of data and so on. She states:

“People are looking at their apps all the time, but they are not really looking at them. I don’t know if people fully realise how technology is changing or controlling our lives. The work deals with the integration of technology and the human spirit”.

Mbryonic and MMCD brought Ying’s world to life by translating her flat frame ideas into an immersive 360°, 3D environment. Through adapting, combining and manipulating ‘found’ 3D assets from the internet, we replicated her specific digital montage style, creating 8 compelling scenes that are available to view with the HTC Vive.

The combination of her ideas and VR allows audiences to understand her representation of digital society and the reason she challenges contemporary modes of politics. It allows one to feel present in the art, as they fully immerse themselves into the narratives world.

Tom, Founder of Mbryonic believes that artists should embrace technology in their art, “whether it be new types of paint, work processes or digital tools, such as VR and AR. Mbryonic have a proud history of collaborating with talented visual artists to combine their ideas with technologies, and we hope more artists start utilising this in the future for self expression”.

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VR has not just become an art medium, it has created more possibilities for artists, such as Ying, to express themselves and their imaginations to an audience in a way that was previously not possible. We are thrilled to have worked with Ying and the other talented individuals involved in this project, and hope this event will inspire other artists to look at VR as something they can utilise, as well as expanding and developing the conversation around digital art more generally.

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