Please enter Utopia Spa & Lounge... experience the weightlessness of the avatar....
An experiment in online utopia: creating a virtual space for genuine exchange and communion during COVID.
All 3D modeling, animation, videos, sound by Erica Molesworth through Social VR platform Mozilla Hubs.
(click here for full screen access)
This virtual reality environment is made up of an immersive soundscape, video, and large flickering cell-like orbs. It rests on segments of landscape attempting to grow out of a green grid, and features monolithic two-faced heads that ask questions about utopia but whisper dystopia. I think of these faces as figures of pre- or post-human intelligences. The scene is contained within a giant geodesic dome - a ubiquitous symbol of utopian experiments, especially during the back-to-the-land era in the United States. This virtual space is my attempt to hybridize my interests in spatial IRL video installation and the interactive world of video games. I use both forms to explore how we locate ourselves as humans in both ‘real’ and ‘artificial’ worlds; in the space between a material Utopia and the weightlessness of the avatar...
Suggestions: If you don't have a VR headset, this works best on a computer browser with good internet and a mouse. Use keyboard's arrow keys to fly around or: w (forward), a (left), d (right) and s (backward) keys. Use mouse to orbit and choose direction (or q and e keys). Hold Shift to move faster. (Refreshing the page helps to resolve most issues.)
Many thanks to VR Art Camp residency and Judit Navratil for the support.
Here is a screen record of a fly-through if you can't access the VR space.
Also a screen-recording of a panel discussion event on The Virtual Void held in the space here.
– all modeling, animation, videos and sound by Erica Molesworth (2021)