how the truth can escape even science

— Is Virtual Art Quasi Art?

Is Virtual Art Quasi-Art?

I have been exploring for many years the potential of virtual technologies as tools for metaphorical architecture of communication. After having tried, in the early nineties, with the Quarxs, a 3D computer animation series, to say how the truth can escape even science, I thought that Virtual Reality was the perfect tool for interrogating Art and the audience.

The Big Questions, starting with Is God Flat? was for me the opportunity to make a statement about the relationship between space, spectator individuality and meaning. If architecture is a space to live, Virtual reality can be a space to read. In “Is God Flat?” the audience explores an  infinite world of bricks. Each participant can build his own labyrinth in search of the flat, one dimensional images of God(s) from art history.
Is the Devil Curved? was the second of these Big Questions in which, by digging corridors in the sky we meet a living creature who attempts to seduce us, casting sounds of  physical pleasure and changing his (her?) shape and behavior in order to gain a wider audience. So called Intelligent Agents and artificial life were used to provide a “virtual” experience of full potential and not pre-written story.

In 1995 the Tunnel Under The Atlantic allows people from the Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris) and Museum of Contemporary Art (Montreal) to meet each other by digging tunnels into pictures of the common past.
Golden Nica Interactive Art Ars Electronica 98, World Skin , a photo-safari in the land of war, is a CAVE work where the audience removes parts of memory taking photos in the virtual world. They leave the virtual land of war with the printed shots, material witnesses of the lost memory.

Maurice Benayoun

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