Allochorie – refers to the process of transporting species from one location to another through natural or human-mediated means.
Technology is shaping the way we perceive reality. Camera filters on our smartphones that change the way we look are just the tip of the iceberg and pave the way to more immersive technologies. Artificial intelligence (AI) plays a key role in this development, to generate what we consume. To shape this process, we need to understand it and make sense of it. Hence, the proposed experience lets participants explore and to some extent control the generative process of AI in Virtual Reality (VR).
We propose a VR experience, where participants can explore a 3D environment generated by an AI. The focus of the creation process are weeds, organic lifeforms that are omnipresent and can adapt to any situation in the physical world. Participants control the generation process by interacting with the environment, and simple head movements trigger the creation of weeds that change unpredictably. Hence, the virtual exhibition room gets filled and overgrown by the participants' interactions in the environment, a process we refer to as Allochorie.
Just like weeds, digital information is overgrowing ever more of our physical surroundings. This abundance of information changes the way we understand our environment and raises questions about the advancing convergence of digital and physical space. Since the weeds created by the neural network are based on captures from reality, it is as if traces of the plants claim space in the digital environment. The instant feedback to the users movements is an exaggeration of the influences one's individual actions have on the environment surrounding them. Furthermore, the constant change of weeds reaches an uncanny state between the familiar and the unfamiliar one can explore. This exploration plays with loss of control in the generation process of digital content, which we can control only up to a certain degree. Altogether, the proposed exposition makes the infinite amount of shapes a Neural Network can create a tangible experience. The tangible experience could be taken further by transferring the digital weeds to physical space through 3D-printing and overgrowing the exhibition room.
In a virtual reality experience participants can explore and to some extent control the generation process of digital weeds created by an AI, overgrowing the digital exhibition space based on their interactions.
1.) Designing a virtual reality environment.
2.) Capturing weeds from reality.
3.) Training neural networks to produce novel 3D geometries of weeds.
4.) Implementing interactive generative process in UE5
We are Philipp Baumann and Timpala Revilot, two artists coming from the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf and Ecole Polytechnique Paris respectively, who are exploring the boundaries of new art forms in an interdisciplinary collaboration. Our collaboration started during our studies at the Cologne Game Lab, which we both graduated from in 2018.