Fiona Valentine Thomann
‘Tracker’ is a virtual reality video piece made in 2017. Thomann explores the scaling possibilities of AR, augmented reality, and VR, virtual reality in ‘Tracker’. She creates three differently scaled variations of 3D models that reach nearly planetary scales. In doing so, she highlights the nature of our thoughts and the plasticity of our brains while navigating these synthetic environments. Thomann’s work immerses individuals into the world of VR and explores the mental and sculptural characteristics of the mind within dreamlike surroundings. ‘Tracker’ is comprised of the first 360 video recordings of space done by NASA from the ISS (International Space Ship). This original, ready-made 360 video gives us a view of the earth from space. The audio component of the work is a recording of the VR experience that Thomann recorded using the app. Astronaut VR. It emulates the sound of breathing through an oxygen mask in digital outer space. By placing an emphasis on sound, the artist questions the position of the human body within a VR context. She achieves this by calling attention to the material conditions of the body and what we can perceive within mixed dimensions.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Fiona Valentine Thomann creates different dimensions to her artworks by using various tools for her immersive drawing_in_space installations, such as augmented reality 3D model, VR video, application, software, painting, print, sculpture, smartphones, etc.. Thomann studied in various fine art schools around the world. She obtained her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Lyon, France. She studied at CAFA in Beijing, China, at HEAD in Genève, Switzerland, at the Kuvat Academy in Helsinski, Finland, and at Josefina Conte in Argentina. Thomann has been exhibiting in both Europe and Asia. She has shown in galleries, museums and art center, such as Priska Pasquer Gallery, in Cologne and at Berlin Art Week 2017, Germany, at Le Magasin, in Grenoble, France and at the Central Academy of Fine Art in Beijing, China. Her last solo show, ‘Tracker’, was also featured in Berlin, Germany at Exgirlfriend Gallery in April 2017.
Fiona Valentine Thomann evokes ideas of how communal and private spaces are occupied or inhabited by entities that are not easily perceivable, but that nonetheless claim an existence; for example the data ghost. Influenced by the Internet of Things and Object Oriented Ontology, she plays with various dimensions of sound and visuals in her art. Thomann examines different relations connecting art to space and time, allowing for her work to be mobile and transportable, always with you in your pocket. Her work essentially questions what is visible and the invisible to us; it underlines the simultaneous accessibility and the inaccessibility of an artwork.
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