This one day exhibition plays with the boundaries of gaming and storytelling to explore what it means to be human. You are invited to explore the potential of immersive storytelling to foster empathy, understanding, and compassion through stepping into the mind, bodies and identities of another.
‘Embodied Realities’ brings together an array of immersive experiences captivating projects that playfully unravel stories that connect the mind and body through multisensory storytelling, offering profound insights into the diversity of human experience across mental health and identity. From diving into the depths of psychosis and breathing through magical underwater landscapes, this exhibition takes you on an immersive tour of the hidden worlds of feeling that reside within each and every one of us.
Goliath: Playing with Reality by Anagram
All realities are imagined. It’s the ones we share that endure.
Goliath Playing with Reality is a 25 minute animated VR experience about schizophrenia, gaming and connection, presented here as a virtual reality installation of the expanded game world of Goliath.
Through mind-bending animation, explore the limits of reality and a true story of mental health and the power of gaming. Echo (narrated by Tilda Swinton) guides you through the many realities of Goliath, a man who spent years isolated in psychiatric institutions but finds connection in multiplayer games.
Combining heart-felt dialogue, mesmerising visuals and symbolic interactions, weave through multiple worlds to uncover Goliath’s poignant story.
Antipsychotic by Matt McCorkle
Dive into Antipsychotic and journey through the mind of someone with bipolar disorder. This immersive experience marries poetic reflections and personal narratives with captivating audio-reactive visuals and evocative soundscapes, set to the beat of poignant music. It’s more than just listening; it’s feeling and exploring the nuanced challenges of mental health.
With user-friendly game controls and a tactile haptic system, participants are urged to delve deep, navigating a landscape rich with personal experiences. Utilising cutting-edge XR technologies and spatial audio, Antipsychotic isn’t just a story—it’s a harmonious blend of introspection and raw emotion, offering a profound glimpse into pre and post-treatment sentiments.
[Content Guidance: Contains discussions around mental health issues]
Deep by Owen Harris and Niki Smit
A breath controlled virtual reality experience that invites players to navigate through a serene and poetic underwater world. Movement is controlled by slow, deep diaphragmatic breathing which soothes and relieves anxiety in the player. Since 2016 research partners at the Games for Emotional and Mental Health Lab, Radboud University have conducted several studies demonstrating the efficacy of DEEP as an intervention tool for young people with anxiety. The experience is now being applied to a range of conditions including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Long COVID and Functional Neurological Disorders.
Asymmetrically Distributed Hyper Dynamism by Simon Wilkinson, BRiGHTBLACK
BRiGHTBLACK present a video game artwork about ADHD, a science fiction playable podcast built into a retro arcade cabinet, set within a dream, documenting a day on ADHD medication.
As the drug kicks in and the symptoms disappear one by one, the artists explore the comedic juxtaposition between an ADHD brain which finds itself in a world where it can thrive vs one where it is doomed to cause annoyance.
There will be a panel discussion at 1.45pm – 2.30pm drawing on themes within the Embodied Realities exhibition. Full details here