The Oculus Rift #WTFisDigitalArt

Join Jenny Judova (founder of Art Map London) on a quest to figure out what the hell is digital art as she explores the digital art scene online, and offline in London.


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Art and Oculus Rift

Having been more than two years that Oculus Rift successfully crowdfunded over $2ml on Kickstarter, and over a year that it was scooped up by Facebook for $2bn; if you haven’t heard about Oculus Rift by now you probably live underneath a rock. If you haven’t tried it then you must, there are a ton of places in London where you can play around with one for free or alternatively you can just download virtual reality mobile app Vrse, which operates in conjunction with a simple viewer, like this cardboard one by Google. If you do try it my advice is to be sober, the vertigo is pretty bad on the first edition of Oculus (its a bit better on the second) and alcohol will make it a lot worse.

Oculus created a lot of excitement within the nerd and gamer communities, surprisingly the art world has so far been a bit indifferent. This makes me super happy because the first digital art was produced in labs by science majors and engineers as they were the only ones who had access to the technology and the skill. Today digital art can be made by anyone with a paint app and an iPad (you know who you), Oculus takes digital art back to the lab. This is my list of the cool art stuff done with Oculus.   

#1 The Machine To Be Another by BeAnotherLab

Ever wonder what its like to have chest hair, or boobs? Then this is a project for you, it allows you to literally see the world from someone else eyes. Basically its a body swap machine – the swapping happens in a virtual world between two people wearing the Rift headset. How cool is that?

#2 Mark Farid and his 28 day experiment

This is awesome and gruesome at the same time. I cannot spend more than 10 minutes in the headset without feeling nauseous The project Seeing I was curated by Nimrod Vardi, who runs probably the most experimental new media art gallery Arebyte.

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#3 Paint for Oculus

Even Oculus Rift got its version of Paint its called Tilt Brush, its awesome. And it can take the Oculus Rift art out of the lab and give it back to the people because any idiot with a Google phone and a piece of cardboard can use this. 

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#4 Entropy Wrangler by Ian Cheng

Debuted at London Frieze 2013 the interactive art piece allows users to alter the direction and the flow of weightless 3D models by tilting and turning their heads. 

#5 Hatsune Miku

Ever wanted a cartoon character or imaginary girlfriend to come to life? Then with some hacking and engineering skills an Oculus Rift and a Kinect this is possible. And its really is quite incredible.

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About Art Map London

Art Map London (www.artmaplondon.co.uk) is an art event listing website whose aim is to promote the London art scene and to demystify it.