Multiplicitous Realities: Hybridizing the Virtual and the Physical
projection mapping, augmented reality, holograms, Aldwych Tube Station, London, digital display, architecture
User spatial experience is no longer solely determined by objective physical realities in today's architecture. A new set of tools allowing for seamless virtual overlay and a new architectural disciplinary and industry interest in creating "virtual" environments are changing the way users understand and experience physical space. These tools include elements such as projection mapping, augmented reality, holograms, and digital display systems. These tools are able transform static physical spaces into dynamic spaces creating multiplicitous realities that transcend spatial physicality.
Researching nightclubs and discotheques as a precedent has revealed the many scales, programs, and possibilities of virtual materials to transform user experience beyond spatial physicality. By utilizing these tools while also designing physical elements that encourage this fresh relationship between physical and virtual elements, spaces can take on new spatial, temporal, and user-conscious realities.
This thesis uses the abandoned Aldwych Tube Station in London to apply and test its contention. The project acts as a digital curator to create a range of sensory and spatial experiences to expand users' sense of space. By utilizing projective mapping and digital display systems managed through a curated spatial narrative, this new hybridized space will be resilient to the static nature of architecture's physicality. The visitors' experience in the space is further enhanced as the architecture reveals its multiple existences across time, again transcending their users' experience beyond the architecture of the space by dissolving its physicality. This not only creates an immense range of possibilities for creating spaces we can never construct but also can be applied in ways to reactivate places that have outlived their physicality, therefore giving us the gift of recreating experiences of the past, and creating new experiences for the present and future.
Carino, John, "Multiplicitous Realities: Hybridizing the Virtual and the Physical" (2018). Architecture Thesis Prep. 412.
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