Aesthetic Prototype and Reading

Assignment for 10/31:


The Virtual – ch.1 “The Return of the Virtual” excerpts – Rob Shields (PDF link)

This text introduces the terms “the virtual” and “virtuality” (in relation to “the real” and “reality”), and explores the social history of virtual experiences leading up to the digital age.

“The virtual has long existed in the form of rituals, and in the built form of architectural fantasies and environments.”


Final Project – Group Formation and Aesthetic Prototype:

  1. Form groups of 2 or 3 students each, and together, develop an initial concept for your shared final project.  Your project concept could be based on one or a combination of your themes from the research briefs.  Or feel free to develop a new or modified concept based on your shared interests (but keep the emphasis on social and political mixed realities).If you can’t find a group to work with, or you want to create a group of more than 3 students, e-mail us ASAP and we will figure it out.
  2. To help your brainstorming, develop an aesthetic prototype or visualization that shows the possible look and feel of your project.  An aesthetic prototype should be a mock-up of the important aesthetic elements of your concept – it can include renderings, images, sound, video, etc., and it may be analog or digital – but it should not be functional.  Don’t yet try to integrate any advanced technology.  A good place to start might be to develop a moodboard, but you should then translate those aesthetics into your own designs.  Keep in mind that your aesthetic prototype is a visualization of your concept.

Note on collaboration with Helsinki students:

There may also be opportunity to collaborate on your project in some way with students in Helsinki, if both teams are working on related themes or technologies.  Especially if you are interested in working with telepresence or networked experiences, you may consider this as a possible direction for your project.  Please let us know ASAP if you are interested in that idea.