Visitors to this year’s London Design Festival can wear mixed reality glasses to manipulate their walk through Medusa, a virtual installation by architect Sou Fujimoto.
Created by the Japanese architect Fujimoto in collaboration with the mixed reality studio Tin Drum, the virtual structure has been installed in the V&A Museum.
Up to 50 guests can simultaneously wear mixed reality glasses and explore the experimental architectural forms designed by Fujimoto.
As they move through Medusa, the dynamic structure “changes and evolves according to the movement of its admirers.”
“Visitors will be able to simultaneously observe this piece of virtual architecture, floating and moving inside the space that is confined by the gallery itself,” said Yoyo Munk, scientific director of Tin Drum.
“The structure is watching the whole group and changing based on what they are watching about the behaviors of the audience, rather than any individual,” he told Dezeen.
“Explore the contrast between the individual and the collective.”
The installation takes its name from the mythological figure Medusa, as well as the zoological term for a jellyfish, in a combination of myths and sciences that is at the heart of the design.
“We liked the idea of a life figure finding that balance between what’s beautiful, attractive, and dangerous,” Munk explained.
The study also used primary attraction for light and underwater bioluminescence to report on the evolution of dynamic structure.
“We were inspired by natural light structures like the northern lights (also known as northern lights) and our connection to light sources,” Monk recalled.
“When we look at a northern lights, we share some point in common with the neural circuits that lead to consuming prey and other things.”
Medusa was designed to challenge people to play, interact, and follow the lights as they walk through the virtual facility.
According to Monk, both Tin Drum and Fujimoto were more interested in the potential of using light as an architectural medium.
“What’s exciting for all of us is this idea that you could build structures that had no physical shape and that only existed when light was projected into the eyes,” Monk said.
“We have the feeling of a space that has a design structure that exists in a spatially explorable sense, that has the ability to change our perceived environment and the way we feel and explore without having any physical form.”
Fujimoto founded Sou Fujimoto Architects in 2000. Although he is best known for his buildings, he has worked on several facilities. In 2017 he created a series of abstract shelves made of thin steel bars for Design Miami / Basel.
For the fashion brand COS, Fujimoto used spotlights, mirrors and sound to create an immersive installation that would respond to the movements of visitors.
The London Design Festival 2021 takes place from 18 to 26 September. See the Dezeen Event Guide for an up-to-date list of architecture and design events taking place around the world.