VR Imaginary Friend

Concept

This is an imaginary friend world in VR. The VR work allows users to explore the imaginary friends of other people (based on real ones from the lives of others) and create their own imaginary friend (based on a real one from their life) in VR. 

The idea of imaginary friendship is analysed expansively in this work and reaches beyond the idea of them simply belonging to childhood or states of psychosis. The kinds of imaginary friends explored include social media relationships, gods, grindr matches, fan relationships with rockstars and more. This is a collective inner-social subworld. 

Installation

Interactive 

Roaming

Performance

Exhibition

Concept Phase

In Development

Sculptures

Your Second Hand

VR Imaginary Friend

Hear the Call

Speecheoke

Your Second Hand

VR Imaginary Friend

Hear the Call

Better Version of Yourself

Speecheoke

Dance Literacy

This is Your Life 

Equal Opportunity 

VR Imaginary Friend

This is Your Life 

Equal Opportunity 

Speecheoke

Dance Literacy

This is Your Life 

Equal Opportunity

Sculptures

Your Second Hand

VR Imaginary Friend

Hear the Call

Better Version of Yourself

Speecheoke

Dance Literacy

This is Your Life 

Equal Opportunity 

Better Version of Yourself

This is Your Life

VR Imaginary Friend

Hear the Call

Dance Literacy

Previously Exhibited

Your Second Hand

Speecheoke

Equal Opportunity 

Sculptures

Audience

Audiences can use the VR headset to explore imaginary friends of others. 

 

Space

Minimum of two VR devices. Extra VR headsets can be ordered if the expected audience size and space is large enough. 

Isolated area for 3 metre radius per VR device. An attendant needs to show audiences how to use headsets and monitor the VR headsets. 

Development

FELLOWSHIP TO DEVELOP THE WORK

Fellowship to develop and produce the VR Work from the Copyright Agency Dec 2019. 

FUTURE EXHIBITIONS

VR work booked to be shown at HERE Art Centre, New York (postponed due to pandemic) most likely to happen late 2021 or 2022. 

PREVIOUS IMAGINARY FRIEND PROJECTS

2011 Imaginary Friend sculpture works begin.

2014 - 2015 Imaginary Friend solo performances began, social interactions with people privately as their constructed imaginary friend. 

 

2016 - 2018 Imaginary friend performances where a team of people with various skills perform privately as the imaginary friends of others. Showing of this work is shown (with confidentiality agreements) at Tate, Liverpool Biennial and a number of shows in other countries and galleries internationally in Europe, Seychelles and the USA.

2019 Finalist for ACMI Mordant VR Commission for new Imaginary Friend work, Winner Fellowship to produce VR work from Copyright Agency.

2020 Research and development of work, early phases, Kiss Club presentation at PICA showing some of the Imaginary Friend research so far and releasing an experience sampling study, to gather more data on inner social relationships. 

Benefits

- Challenges contemporary understandings of imaginary relationships especially with prevalence to online relationships. 

- Invites audience to consider and recreate some imaginary relationships from their life. 

 

Challenges

- Audience privacy in sharing these imaginary relationships. Contracts must be drawn to protect audiences. 

- Ethical considerations of audience sharing such relationships, consultation with psychologist concerning this work and clear measures taken with ethical considerations for audiences.  

- This work needs a lot of time to develop. I am currently considering which VR company to work with in making this work and potentially taking a course in VR myself too, which will take a long time. 

Covid Accomodations

This work could potentially be downloaded on personal home VR headsets or online versions of the VR work could be shown on a brower. However, it is not ideal to have a browser version of a VR work. This work will most likely be ready in 2022, a vaccine may be available by this time and Covid accomodations may not be necessary. 

Imaginary Friend Website Password: imagineinternet 

PLEASE KNOW THESE WEBLINKS BELOW HAVE ONLY BEEN SHOWN/DEVELOPED SO FAR PRIVATELY. AN AUDIENCE IN A GALLERY HAS NEVER SEEN THESE. THIS IS COMPLETELY NEW TO THE PUBLIC. 

Please be aware the development pages which have comment section, psychological evaulation, interviews etc will not be accessible to the public in the public database access.

Please be aware this is another version of the work. The entrance where you must choose one out of two options may be replicated to find the Imaginary Friend however the Imaginary Friend page (where you can make the imaginary friend live in some way) will instead be the VR project. 

Please be aware the development pages which have comment section, psychological evaulation, interviews etc will not be viewed in this in VR version.