Das Is

Das Is


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In memory of Mike Harrison (October 15, 1987 - August 18, 2018) 
This work in progress will not be further developed. I am sharing this to honor the brilliant mind of my dear friend.


Das Is is a transition through mortality, crossing through multiple planes and memories. Through this interactive journey, a disembodiment self reflects on monuments of stone navigating through unforgotten impressions of life while transitioning through manifolds on space. Every portal triggering distinct emotional responses as one converges more with a greater expansiveness. 

Using binaural audio and light and sound therapy techniques to create a dizzying sense of serenity and calmness and the narrative becomes bodily-felt. The viewer explores the environment without any tactic attachments or representations of the self, so they not only play a role in the landscape but become it in response to the auditory stimulus and visceral visual movement while roaming endlessly though space and time. 


I often investigate studies in cognitive neuroscience and psychoacoustics and the possibilities of implementing those findings in my work. With advancements in VR we now have the possibility to amplify psychological illusions and perceptions in a surreal landscape. I also focus on cinematic and traditional arts to explore how these artists explored sensory perception and experimental narrative. The basis of my inspirations originally was ignited through my personal cultural history with Latino folk healers and drawing comparisons of these community, musical, and ritualistic practices and which aspects have continued to be integrated to the modern day. 

As you enter a new realm, you are consumed with new sensations of the vibratory environment using subspacks during exhibits.

You- a disembodied being-  are introduced to a disorienting landscape of monuments and memories, realizing that the thingness that was you is gone but still feeling the phantom bodily sensation of fragmented space passing through the body. 

Spatialized sound soundscapes allow you to  finding portals to alternate dimensions that fracture and warp as you delve further. 
The rocks symbolically in the jewish tradition are placed on grave stones, rather than flowers as they decay quickly, and symbolize permanence of the legacy of the loved one who passed.

It was first created for the Art of Dying event, hosted by OpenIDEO’s Re: Imagine series and featured on The Creator's Project. This VR experience uses the HTC Vive so the audience can interact and traverse through portals within the scene. 

I was invited back to IDEO for the ReImagine: End of Life Series in 2018, where I explained VR and consciousness, covering topics pertaining to consciousness outside of the body (outer body experiences) and how virtual reality can induce feelings of a phantom self. Visual imagery intensified by fully immersive works further develop the human ability for imaginal "rescripting" of experiences. I examined both modern advancements in VR and folk psychology, and it's implications on how we approach our feelings of the afterlife and the self.

VR Experience Created in Unity3d
Visual Design and Programming: Chelley Sherman
Sound Design: Mike Harrison

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