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Within and Without You - Full Tilt Oculus Rift Dome

posted Oct 13, 2014, 3:45 AM by Ellen Pearlman

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Oculus Rift Dome Setup for “Spa” installation at Via, photo courtesy LaTurbo Avadon

At the Via Festival in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania an artist who calls herself ” La Turbo Avadon”, has put together an Oculus Rift virtual reality headset, binaural audio, and a 30 foot tall bubblePGH to create an immersive “spa”. You watch a video by Brittany ASMR to relax. ASMR stands for Autonomous sensory meridian response and is “a neologism for a perceptual phenomenon characterized as a distinct, pleasurable tingling sensation in the head, scalp, back, or peripheral regions of the body in response to visual, auditory, tactile, olfactory, and/or cognitive stimuli.” 

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Inflatable, portable bubblePGH

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Brittney ASMR getting ready to spread pixie dust “Starlet Sparkle”

This collaboration,  conceptually created by VIA’s founder and creative director Lauren Goshinski, allows every single person who partakes to have their own unique experience. 

The bubble installation can only accomodate three people at a time, who lay on comfy bean bag looking things wear Oculus Rifts and headphones. Three Mac Minis combine to churn out the Rift virtual environments. 

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Totally Zoned Out in the bubble, photo courtesy LaTurbo Avadon

This first happened with Stan VanderBeek’s immersive dome, focus of a 2012 “Ghosts In the Machine” show at the New Museum, and which I blogged about extensively in 2012.

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Image from blog site Revel In New York of VanDerBeek  outside his “Movie-Drome”  at Stoney Point in upstate New York

This image is from VanderBeek’s dome in the 1960’s and the image below is taken from inside his dome where everyone lay on the ground and started straight up. The difference is there was no Oculus Rift, so this was as immersive as it could get.

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VanDerBeek in 1969. He described “motion pictures as graphics in motion” and “looked upon the computer as a challenge.”  Photo from Faariscar blog

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