[ISEA2018] Paper: Johannes Birringer — Atmospheres and Immersion Architecture


Keywords: atmospheres, architecture, interaction, movement, wearables, tactile-liquid vision, augmented virtuality

This presentation extends the author’s earlier work on dance technologies and in/audible choreographies to delve into participatory sensory architecture and augmented virtuality, introducing concepts of the material affects of textured, temperamental aural environments, and discussing the design of wearables used in immersive environments (kinetic atmospheres
or ‘kimospheres’). Kinetic atmospheres are conceived as formative, not built/constructed in a stable form but responsive to movers or even ‘wearable’ themselves. Basing its investigation of such porous interactive environments for wearable performance in recent installations of the DAP-Lab, as well as acoustic-theatrical installations and contemporary choreographic architectures and objects, the paper explores the impact of sonic and tactile wearables on
movement and role-play within such kimospheres.
Finally, it sketches more speculative developments of how bodies and wearables come to affect, and be affected by, kinetic, sonic and Virtual Reality interfaces – in the sense in which the composer Xenakis had envisioned reverberant multimedia architectures and spatial intensities to be live instruments, not static objects or envelopes. Birringer proposes to rework architectural, cybernetic, and hydrogeological theories of the liquid, and shift attention to liquid aurality and virtuality derived also from anthropological concepts of understanding the
movement of water, mist, and vapor (immersion, animation, animateriality).

  • Johannes Birringer, Brunel University, London, UK, is a choreographer and media artist; he co-directs the DAP-Lab at Brunel University where he is Professor of Performance Technologies in the School of Arts. He has created numerous dance-theatre works, video installations and digital projects in collaboration with artists in Europe, the Americas, China, and Japan. DAP-Lab’s interactive dance Suna no Onna was featured at festivals in London (2007-08); the mixed-reality installation UKIYO went on European tour in 2010. The dance opera for the time being was shown at Sadler’s Wells, 2014. A series of immersive dance installations, metakimospheres, began touring in Europe in 2015-17 as part of the Europe-wide METABODY project. He authored Media and Performance (1998), Performance on the Edge (2000), Performance, Science and Technology (2009), and transdisciplinary research projects, including the books Dance and Cognition (2005), and Dance and Choreomania (2011). He is editor of “Sound in Performance” for Critical Stages #16 (2017).  brunel.ac.uk/dap

Full text p. 201 – 207