07 Currents-Virtual reality environments

Virtual reality environments: A virtual reality, or VR, environment is a fabricated realm that emulates a real environment by using computer hardware and software technology. A VR environment typically involves the use of a headset that closes off wearers’ sensory awareness of the space around them, replacing it with a graphic display: typically, a totally different environment than the one the user is actually in. Virtual reality can range from a partially immersive experience to a fully immersive, 360-degree one, and can be used to approximate sensations such as touch and motion.

Bike Party, Billie Mitchell and Charles Veasey

Artists Billie Mitchell and Charles Veasey invite you to bike along with a group of other cyclists through the streets of various cities without ever leaving the safety of El Museo Cultural de Santa Fe. The seven-minute experience provides a 360-degree, fully immersive VR experience while participants sit on a stationary bike and wear a VR headset. Mitchell shot the high-resolution visual component while taking part in bike parties, which are gatherings of biking enthusiasts who ride together in groups that sometimes reach sizes of more than a thousand.

Mitchell — a locally based cinematographer known for his camera work on Baraka (1992), Training Day (2001), and Windtalkers (2002), among others — is a visual artist and avid cyclist. Bike Party is his first collaboration with Veasey, a visual artist, software developer, and educator based in Santa Fe.