Translating Virtual Reality into an Artistic Medium

Recently, more and more artists have begun experimenting with the medium of Virtual Reality (VR) and producing immersive, computer generated worlds. Further, both known and not as well-known museums, festivals and galleries around the world have started exhibiting VR artwork. However, despite this hype around VR art, and its very fast and successful entry in the art world, it seems that this art form is still very nascent and just beginning to develop and define its own language, aesthetic, contents etc. and to become its own art form. This project investigates how VR is translated into an art medium. How exactly does VR get established as its own art form? What do the artistic strategies and methods of appropriation of this new and nascent medium look like in detail? How does a new aesthetic language develop? Who is involved in all of these processes? Are there similarities to the strategies and processes of developing and establishing former avant-garde forms as their own art forms? To answer the outlined research questions, a set of different qualitative methods are employed such as document analysis, semi-structured interviews and ethnographic observations of artistic practices by following one specific piece of VR artwork at the place of its production, namely in the artist’s studio. By trying to understand the process of translating VR into an artistic medium  this project aims to expand different theoretical approaches starting from sociology of art, through research on art done in the tradition of Science and Technology Studies (STS), to theories of art history.

Project leader(s):
Mariya Dzhimova

01.2017 – 01.2020

Project type:
["Promotionsprojekt \/ PhD Project"]