DIGITAL TRANSCENDENCE (2021)

Digital Transcendence display
Digital Transcendence display

This display emphasizes the importance of the QR code in Covid times, which were marked by an increased mass visual consumption. The tool becomes the piece, making it a state- ment in itself as well. Black vinyl, 125x125 cm. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

Scanning of QR (DT)
Scanning of QR (DT)

This display emphasizes the importance of the QR code in Covid times, which were marked by an increased mass visual consumption. The tool becomes the piece, making it a state- ment in itself as well. Black vinyl, 125x125 cm. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

Digital Transcendence video
Digital Transcendence video

This display emphasizes the importance of the QR code in Covid times, which were marked by an increased mass visual consumption. The tool becomes the piece, making it a state- ment in itself as well. Black vinyl, 125x125 cm. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

Digital Transcendence display
Digital Transcendence display

This display emphasizes the importance of the QR code in Covid times, which were marked by an increased mass visual consumption. The tool becomes the piece, making it a state- ment in itself as well. Black vinyl, 125x125 cm. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

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https://assis997.github.io/DigitalTranscendence/

 

Digital Transcendence is an interactive website and installation that translates the overwhelming yet embedded relationship we have with mass visual consumption. An addictive, borderless and frightening physiological and emotional phenomena we’ve somehow learned to accept and embrace, as an alternative to being paralyzed by its scale and impact. The website’s audiovisual aspects aim to induce sensorial feelings of acceleration, blurring the lines between the different social media content. The work immerses the viewer in a ‘wallpaper’ of mass media to heighten the physical and psychological experience. A repetitive techno beat is overlaid with an auditory illusion of infinite ascension known as the Shepard’s tone , the latter also translated to the video's speed. These combined effects symbolize the lack of gratification we get as we’re endlessly scrolling, hoping for closure. The only way to escape from the overwhelming experience seems to be closing the tab. As long as it’s open, you’re overtaken by a digital transcendence. 

 

The goal of this work is to induce a reflection on our relationship with social media and hyper-connectivity. Its poignancy lies in the common effects social media has on the human psyche.  The work highlights the rising issues of psychological and physiological overwhelm that come with the digital age of information which are heightened by the current Covid-19 pandemic and geopolitical crises.

 

Initial prototypes, before improvement and adaptation to exhibition at Fondation Fiminco, Paris, May 2021:

A FALL INTO 2020 (Virtual Reality/2020)

A Fall into 2020
A Fall into 2020

Virtual Reality experience in reaction to the Corona Virus. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

A Fall into 2020
A Fall into 2020

Virtual Reality experience in reaction to the Corona Virus. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

A Fall into 2020
A Fall into 2020

Virtual Reality experience in reaction to the Corona Virus. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

A Fall into 2020
A Fall into 2020

Virtual Reality experience in reaction to the Corona Virus. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

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For our "Wearable Spaces" project, I wanted to focus on a VR experience and what it has to offer, playing on the physical boundaries that can be pushed through VR.

 

Inspired by our current global sanitary crisis, I created a VR installation where the player falls through a tube of screens, showing a timeline of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

 

Free falling is something very few people actually experience, or sadly live to tell about. Even then it is way too intense, risky and hardly accessible for the common person.

 

Falling is also a mental feeling, one that a lot of us are currently experiencing as we lack control over the current situation. It is hard to see an end to this confinement. It is even scarier to have to admit to ourselves that we will feel the effects of this pandemic for months, maybe years. Even so, it is obvious our society will forever be changed in an unprecedented way. 

 

Finally, and in my opinion the worst part of all of this, is that our only knowledge of the invisible enemy that has us sheltered in our homes is through a bombardment of news and media headlines that are mostly constructed, manipulative and misleading. It is the government’s way to control the masses and the public narrative. Fear makes us “fall” for it much more easily, however intelligent, cultivated and humble one can be.

 

Taylor, Derrick Bryson. “How the Coronavirus Pandemic Unfolded: a Timeline.” The New York Times. The New York Times, February 13, 2020. https://www.nytimes.com/article/coronavirus-timeline.html.

BIG BROTHERS (Virtual Reality / 2019)

Big Brothers is an immersive 3D virtual reality world challenging the modern relationship we have with faces, our selfie culture and surveillance capitalism. I focused on the big leaders who created the way we interact with faces today : Andrew Grove, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and Larry Paige.They enabled the technologies, algorithms and gadgets that determine the way our society functions nowadays. The audience finds itself in the center of a panopticon/maze-like structure, surrounded by screens of interviews and gifs of those figures.

Big Brothers 2019
Big Brothers 2019

Virtual Reality

Big Brothers 2019
Big Brothers 2019

Virtual Reality

Big Brothers 2019
Big Brothers 2019

Virtual Reality

Big Brothers 2019
Big Brothers 2019

Virtual Reality

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XTREME DREAMWORLD (Virtual Reality / 2019)

XTREME dreamworld
XTREME dreamworld

Stills from the utopia. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

XTREME dreamworld
XTREME dreamworld

Stills from the utopia. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

XTREME dreamworld
XTREME dreamworld

Stills from the utopia. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

XTREME dreamworld
XTREME dreamworld

Stills from the utopia. © Sacha R. Assi 2021

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I created this extreme utopic "dreamworld"  for a collaboration with Thalia Kassem and Nasia Chan on a 3 scene Virtual Reality project.

For a full playthrough of the entire project, visit : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFpwD0lksao&feature=youtu.be

Everytime we close our eyes and drift into sleep, we might be faced with the dream world which we have no control over. We can end up with a beautiful dream or a horrific nightmare. Often these illusions are brought forth because of life circumstances and issues we are currently facing in the real world.

Taking inspiration from this natural reaction of human nature, we wish to create an inspirational dream world that is separated into a utopia and a dystopia. 

By creating two opposite worlds that are both over-exaggerated and extreme, we will translate the importance of balance in one’s perception of life. Without the good, you wouldn’t know what bad is, and vice versa. Our project further suggests that you can find good in a dystopian world and bad in a utopian world

At the beginning of the VR experience, the user starts in a bedroom, prompted to press X or Y. If he presses X, he will travel to the dystopia, the nightmare. If he presses Y, the user will travel to the Utopia, the dream world.

INTO THE CLOUD (2019)

Into the cloud
Into the cloud

© Sacha R. Assi

Into the cloud
Into the cloud

Into the cloud
Into the cloud

Into the cloud
Into the cloud

© Sacha R. Assi

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The OECD approached our class in January 2019 and asked us to create a centerpiece for their annual conference. The theme was Tech for Trust, as governments tackle the complex use of new technologies in an anti-corruption and full transparency context.

On a daily basis, a massive amount of data is being stored in faraway clouds.

People perform an act of trust by giving their personal information to public and private institutions.

This piece reflects on trust and transparency implied in such technologies. The Cloud is depicted here as a transparent container of data, a safe place where information isn’t used for dark purposes and the user has control over it.

The audience is given the choice of imputing data into The Cloud or neglect it. This gesture is simulated by the act of switching on the lights of the installation.