For those unfamiliar, LaTurbo Avedon is a new media artist who presents herself as a digital avatar. Last week, the artist continued her exploration of an omnipresent digital art world by creating Panther—a virtual exhibition space where new media creatives can share and exhibit their work in 3D-rendered spaces.
LaTurbo creates the digital "galleries" herself, and the artists asked to install work in each must adapt their practices and formats to adhere to the spatial constraints. Video, stills, webGL scenes, Oculus Rift files, and more will merge with a digital realm created with the help of Maya software and Cinema4D. The virtual spaces has all the characteristics of an IRL museum, such as white walls, and a synthetic/artificial lighting system that accentuates the texture of materials.
“Each project at Panther will introduce a new area for the artis to work with, delivered as a 3D file," Avedon told The Creators Project. "The goal is to create site-specific work that engages the original file. Unlike a physical space, this scene is just as malleable as the work being created—it can be entirely reassembled and modified as the artist see fit to create their installation.”
Vienna-based new media artist Aoto Oouchi was the first to experiment with this new virtual artspace, "installing" a sculpture that looks like a heap of melted plastic (or ice cream a la Battles' Gloss Drop). In the virtual realm of Panther, though, the exhibition can be explored and viewed from a variety of angles that couldn't be experienced at a physical gallery.
We asked Oouchi a few questions to know more about his practice and how he managed to integrate his work into this digital, white-walled arena.
The Creators Project : Hi Aoto, could you briefly describe the work that you are showing at the Panther Gallery?
Aoto Oouchi: I create digital objects inspired by fetishized aesthetics within pop culture, and combine them with a certain sense of reality and seed them back into social sites. My work for Panther follows the same concept, but focuses more on a common idea for white spaces. The illusion of value by size and material in big architectural places we know from IRL art shows.
I imagine that the minimal architectural space by LaTurbo influenced your work quite a bit. It must have been a real puzzle to create a piece offbeat by its shapes and colors that still occupies the space well. Can you tell us more about it?
It was tempting to be too straightforward, in creating shapes that fit too well to the high ceiling or being ironic by placing little non art related pieces on the floor. For me it’s about balancing between the obvious and the not so easily perceived. Freedom in digital space can be tricky and in this case the architecture helped me to focus on the object itself.
Could you explain to us your process for adapting the specificities of your work and of your creative approach in this virtual space?
After receiving the room and some specs, I pretty much improvised my way through a milk filled swimming pool with floating transparent objects, to water reflection plastic cutouts. I liked the idea of light and shadow so I used deformed shapes and materials like simple and translucent plastic that interact well with that.
Concerning the technical aspect, could you tell us which tools and softwares you used for this installation?
I used Zbrush for the main object and Realflow and some physic simulation to sculpt other parts, composing the installation and combining it with the architecture. The lights and texture were done in Cinema 4D and for rendering I used Octane.
Finally, you must surely be working on other projects, can you tell us a bit more about them?
I have been invited to collaborate in a few projects in the coming months which I very much look forward to. Alongside I also plan to meet some of my art related contacts in real life.