philip lelyveld The world of entertainment technology


Immersive Storytelling, Virtual Reality at HIFF

“To the Moon,” by Laurie Anderson and Hsin-Chien Huang, transports the viewer on a debris-filled space voyage to the moon. Like the artists’ previous work in VR, it is a dazzling experience full of visual pyrotechnics and haptic feedback that is probably as close to space travel and walking on the moon as any of us will come. It draws images and tropes from Greek mythology, literature, science, science-fiction films, and, briefly, politics.

While in “To the Moon” one is surrounded by a vividly imagined astral realm; in “Traveling While Black” the medium puts the viewer so vividly into the restaurant—at a table with other customers, listening to their stories—that one is tempted to reach for a salt shaker or give the person next to you more room.

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