Isea 2022 - Possibles



June 15th

Short papers / Polyphonic Materiality in Extended Reality

Authors: Kate Geck


Theme: Extended Reality, Materiality, Polyphony, Assemblage.

Venue: CCCB

More information: http://@dreamburgerz

  • Abstract: Much human-computer interaction design (HCI) research on materiality investigates the ways in which computational qualities become embedded within physical materials, often under the banner of ‘the material turn’. With the development of extended reality (XR) and the emerging metaverse, how might we understand and articulate the qualities and agencies of digital materials as they overlay, embed and replace the physical world? This paper advocates for an ontology of digital materials to understand how they actualise in the world without being tangible, providing a way for XR designers and artists to critically work with them as part of an assemblage. It will introduce an idea of polyphonic materiality, drawing on Anna Lowenhaupt-Tsing’s concept of polyphonic assemblage. It will locate digital materiality within Giles Deleuze’s idea of the virtual and actual, and Karen Barad’s concept of agential realism. This provides a conceptual underpinning to the proposition of polyphonic materiality as a typology for doing XR design, where material properties emerge as various physical and digital processes coalesce or intersect.
  • Biography: I am an artist living on unceded Wurundjeri and Boon Wurrung land in Narrm/Melbourne Australia. I am interested in network culture, working with code, installation and textiles to create interactive surfaces exploring thresholds between the physical and the digital, often extended with augmented reality. My practice tends to the connections between humans and technology, seeking to create sites of respite and resistance that think through alternative agendas for networked technologies. I have exhibited in Australia and abroad, with funding and commissions from a range of organisations, including in 2020 and 2021 from the University of Queensland Art Museum. I am a PhD candidate in Design at RMIT and a lecturer in Interior Design.


  • CCCB

Montalegre, 5 - 08001 Barcelona

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