“TEM merges the physical and virtual in a glimpse to the future potential of immersive physical installs.”
For Rag and Bone SS17, Marcus Wainwright’s first show since the departure of David Neville, Prodject asked TEM to create something unique and ambitious. TEM with Vincent de Belleval created a virtual environment around a catwalk, telling a story based on Thom Yorke’s ‘Coloured Candy’.
TEM created bespoke 2.5m tall, 0.5 tonne, 60rpm motorised beacons, X3, from these, they piped content turning the room into an inverted zoetrope. The phasing kinetic motion of the beacons evolves with the audio to paint the space with light and movement. From an abstract horizon, geometric landscapes through to glitched chocolate box beach scenes, waveform analysis and light. The beacons become lanterns illuminating a virtual environment that evolves. As the track and content system reach apogee, the beacons create glimpses of another place, for just a few seconds, before track and sculptures lose phase.
Vincent de Belleval developed a process for feeding power and data to a series of revolving motorised projectors. They then formed these projectors into 3 large beacons and placed them in array in the centre of the Rag and Bone SS17 show. Using feedback data from the motors, the rotation of virtual cameras is aligned in Notch with the physical rotation, meaning the user to essentially paint static imagery on to the walls and gauzes of the venue in 3 sweeping 360 arcs. The faster the projectors spin, the more the illusion of a completely immersive environment is created by the phenomenon of vision persistence. This kinetic content system allows TEM to build environments around the models and guests which the motorised projectors sample as they spin, like lighthouses illuminating virtual worlds. It also allowed the use of content infrastructure as a conceptual and sculptural element in the show, instead of hiding it in the shadows. The project was documented by Google as part of their Daydream VR platform.