The XRL (eXtended Reality Lab), co-directed by Alvaro Cassinelli and Christian Sandor, is part of the SCM (School of Creative Media), a one-of-a-kind institution, nurturing new generations of interdisciplinary artists and creative media professionals in Asia and abroad.
A crucible for media artists, scientists, designers and inventors from all over the world interested in producing original work in the fields of Augmented Reality (including its fundamental technologies: computer vision, optics, computer graphics, and human-computer interaction) and Augmented Materiality (physical computing, smart materials, digital fabrication, swarming robotics, IoT among other emerging technologies).
An eclectic environment but not “yet another” mash up of scientists and artists—instead a place where exploratory practices entangle at a deeper level through challenging collaborative projects.
A place capable of extending the reach of creative thinking, and where lectures and seminars are tailored for and by the actors themselves.
The world is in need of significantly more imaginative visions to engage with the inevitable full-scale deployment of extremely disruptive technologies such as AR, VR, and AI to name a few.
The academic ecosystem that creates and distributes knowledge, but also the traditional spaces where artistic practices thrive, need to open up to—and inspire—larger communities, both in a social and a geographical sense.
Approaching real world problems in a multidisciplinary way can inspire artists, create new research opportunities, and open new design dimensions—and eventually bring to the table more favorable but still realistic alternatives to a seemingly inescapable dystopian future.
Recognizing that our relation to the world and to ourselves is being fundamentally reshaped by these technologies, the XRL aims to explore emerging forms of interaction and communication, and ultimately new ways of being in the world. That these turn out to be favorable for all of mankind depends on how well one understands and speaks the language of radically new media. In this regard, the SCM with its close ties to ALIVE (Applied Laboratory for Interactive Visualization and Embodiment) and to ACIM (Centre for Applied Computing and Interactive Media) provides an ideal context to reflect and perform the required historical, artistic, social and scientific critique of these disruptive technologies.
From the sharing of images and sound to the sharing of thoughts and emotions, the construction of an extended self and an extended reality must start not only with a precise registration and manipulation of light and matter, but also by peering into the mind itself.