Helena Acosta

Thursday Spotlight: DiMoDa Brings a Digital Museum to Superchief Gallery

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Visitors visit the Digital Museum using Oculus Rift while the visualization is projected on screen at the Superchief Gallery

I just had a trippy time in the back room of Tender Trap and not because I was beer happy and dancing to old school hip hop. The back space moonlights as Superchief Gallery (66 Greenpoint Ave), and it’s there that I stepped into the virtual world of the Digital Museum of Digital Art (DiMoDa), where it is currently exhibiting the works of four New Media artists in DiMoDa 2.0: Morphé Presence.

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Render of the museum in the virtual realm of DiMoDa

Equipped with the Oculus Rift and Xbox controller, I landed in what looked like a deserted space station with a futuristic Pantheon in the distance. Here is where you see the work of DiModa’s two founders – Alfredo Salazar-Caro, who designed the terrain and the 3D modeling using a medley of tools (Blender/Z-Brush/Substance Painter/Unity) and William Robertson, who did the programming to make it fully functional. Once inside the museum, you are faced with four monoliths, each of which take you to one of the artists’ works. Continue reading

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Between the Real and Virtual: UNCANNY Explores 3D at REVERSE

Uncanny_OpeningRemember Second Life? It’s a platform that gives users the ability to create 3D virtual spaces and interact with one another as avatars. When I first dabbled with it, I was drawn to the numerous possibilities. I imagined a new kind of online shopping where instead of looking at lists and product images, my avatar would walk down an aisle full of items and bump into other shoppers along the way. I created an account and explored various “worlds”. I attended a political debate. Then one night, I dressed up and went to a virtual beach club. The landscape was beautiful and the music was good. I “danced” for about 15 minutes before I realized the reality of the situation – that I was in my PJs sitting in my bedroom furiously tapping the CTRL key on a Friday night.

But does that make the experience less “real”? I met people from around the world in a space that inspired the imagination and I took the time to create the movements and image of an avatar. Self-expression plus interaction, however digital, was present and was arguably less inhibited by the limits of physical space. Through the work of five artists, this notion of “immersive experiences that oscillate between real and virtual space” is explored in REVERSE gallery’s UNCANNY, a group show about 3D virtual environments (28 Frost St). Continue reading

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