Simple Things Festival

A unique collaboration by the University of Bristol’s Smart Internet Lab and Brigstow Institute and the Simple Things Festival in 2019 allowed festival ticket holders to experience a world premiere artistic performance in a multi-user Virtual Reality (VR) experience.

On Saturday 19 October 2019, an electronic music artist Aïsha Devi presented at We The Curious, the world premiere of I Am Not Always Where My Body Is, an unprecedented multi-user VR experience, commissioned by Simple Things and produced by in collaboration with Pussykrew with support from Smart Internet LabBrigstow Institute, Watershed, and South West Creative Technology Network (SWCTN).

The experience allowed a group of guests wearing VR headsets and headphones to get lost within a ten metre virtual space, alongside the holographic capture of Devi herself.

Individual instrument tracks from the featured music piece were scattered around the environment, making the music sound different from every position; whilst guests playfullyly interacted with each other through their virtual avatar alter-egos.

Viewers collectively experienced this 3D performance through an innovative mixed reality technology developed with VR specialists The Swiss-Nepalese Electronic music artist leads the ritual-like audio experience through her holographic persona, whilst each participant assumed the virtual form of an anthropomorphic character.

The application utilised Smart Internet Lab's 5GUK Test Network, the UK’s first urban large scale 5G End-to-End Testbed for Digital Innovation. The University's Smart Internet Lab has pioneered research on 5G technologies, and experiments on its 5GUK Test Network, delivering international and national impact.

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