Alexander Schubert - Unity Switch
Interactive Virtual Performative Installation

Program Notes:
„Unity Switch“ is a participative installation, which allows the participants to look through the eyes of different people and interact on a virtual level. Through the use of video glasses and cameras the perception of vision and sound is routed from one person to another. In this setting the constant switching of perception questions embodiment, body images, virtual distance and digital emotions. It is an exploration space aimed to create a personal experience. The aspects cover such contrasting associations as empathy, control, collaboration, isolation, virtuality and perceptual overload. While delivering a strong sensory input it is designed as a setting to be explored by the visitor - and created to allow a personal and emotional engagement.

The setting runs as a 25-minute-loop with four participants and four performers per run. It takes place in four separate rooms, which host a table, 2 chairs and 2 lights. In each room one performer and one audience member sit at tables facing each other.

Every performer and every audience member wears video glasses (looking like VR glasses), that are each equipped with a video camera (attached to the glasses). All cameras and video glasses are connected to a big routing matrix (“unity switch”), which can route all inputs to all outputs. By default the camera of each person is linked to the video glasses of the same person. That means by default each performer and audience meber sees on their video glasses what their own camera captures. Like this everybody basically simply sees a video-version of the own first-person-view (FPV).
Within the piece the linking/routing between the FPVs is changed. In the first step that means that an audience member will see the FPV of a performer - and this performer will see the FPV of the audience member. So they are switching what they see. As the piece continues all possible connections are used.

The installation allows the change of perspective and body perception. Its therapeutical approach lets the visitor look through different eyes and addresses self-awareness and embodied memories. It utilizes the technique „Projected Mapping“.
In a synchronized multi-vision group exercise the participants interlock in a multi-agent performance exercise. We zone out, drift off, and turn into a plural-body.

5.7.2019 & 6.7.2019

Time of Music (Musiikin aika) Festival

Markus Hohti
Hanna Kinnunen
Sami Klemola
Mikko Raasakka
Antti Salovaara

Co-comission by Time of Music and Defunensemble.

Video: Carl-John Hoffmann