'Let it Grow'- Immersive installation in relation to culture expression and audiences' perceptual experience
School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
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AbstractCurrently, immersive art installation has become one of the most rapidly growing segments of the immersive design industry. As a hybrid of art and technology to collectively disrupt the zone of single material expression, full-body, sensory immersion installations have emerged and given people more opportunities to experience different realities. As various immersive exhibitions emerged in the year 2019, it was evident to see that more pop-up exhibitions start to be generated by instant interaction and astonishing digital illusions. The lucrative market space and audiences' pursuits of novelty underlined by the overall development of this industry provoked the critical question that this thesis takes into consideration, that is, 'What is the intrinsic value behind immersive art?' In order to enhance the cultural perception of this project, it is significant to understand the relationship between audiences' cultural experiences and a range of design methods. Based on audiences' linear experience of this project, this study divides audiences' experience into three stages - 'before exploring', 'exploring', and 'after exploring'. In the first stage, this study investigates the realm of psychology to gain an understanding of how the inherent value of artworks promotes people's intrinsic motivation for spontaneous immersion. In the second stage, this study conducts two representative case studies adopting several design factors to understand how the aesthetic distance between the artwork and audiences' knowledge affects audiences' perception of an unknown culture. The goal is to retrieve the optimal aesthetic balance as well as further develop the reflective design approaches. In the third stage, this study strategically carries out through practical design using design approaches to better understand participants' perceptual experience. To investigate how the perceptual process evolves, a practical design is conducted by creating a physically immersive installation based on a Finnish myth story called 'Revontulet'. Besides, a questionnaire is designed to further understand audiences' interests and willingness to participate in the installation, and the questionnaire aims at gathering audiences’ feelings, including different factors, to evaluate the design approaches and the design work.
Thesis advisorLucero, Andrés
immersive art, installation design, culture perception, audiences' experience, flow theory, aesthetic distance