Urban-Related Sensoria: Environments, Technologies, Sensobiographies

Racelar Ho; Sarah Vollmer

June, 6-12th, 2020

• Koli, Finland, Cyberspace
• Session: Boundaries of Perception – Virtual vs Reality;
• Project: Luminiferous Funeral, MR game art;
• Abstract Book: https://archive.uef.fi/documents/2323325/0/Abstract+book

We propose a session with a discussion centering around our (human) perceptions of climate change and environmental effects and our place within this discussion on both a local and broader sense. 


We relate this to a current installation of ours which looks at regional ‘hidden’ changes in the environment from climate patterns and how our perceptions of what appears ‘real’ or not changes based on our subjective focus. In this ongoing project we fuse local environmental data within the installation to customize the experience for greater impact on the local audience. As such we seek to host a session centered around this concept of perception affecting understanding with the hope of igniting a more personal relationship. 


The following is a brief motivation to be related to the symposium’s thematic theme of Senses, hierarchies, and multisensoriality: Luminiferous Funeral is an interdisciplinary VR game-artwork with a physical-sensory perception installation. This collaborative work focuses on exploring the invisible erosion of climate change and environmental breakdown to birds and plants in Canada by offering audiences an opportunity to dialogue with nature. It is also a project of collaboration with environmental scientist and professor at Università Ca' Foscari Venezia, Marco Pesce who supplies related data and sustainability strategies to provide maximum impact of the game content. 


This game is an Art-Science collaboration based on First-Person Adventure game, “Flying into Myself” (Ho), which focused on the inner-communication with one’s self about the essential nature of life and death. Contributing to the development of the game and installation will be an awareness of the ethics of moving towards a digital future-one in which we may find ourselves inextricably linked to technology in ways we cannot even fully appreciate. Of interest is the integration of custom wearable haptics (Vollmer) and how the fusion of kinaesthetic perspectives in virtual areas encourages the re-introduction of mind-body connections through aesthetic practices and “being”–being present, being other, being self. 


The project website can be found online at: https://www.racelarho.com/luminiferous-funeral-19- 20