Jakob Kudsk Steensen

Terratic Animism, 2016

VR experience for HTC Vive or Oculus Rift 

Terratic Animism (2016) explores how past utopian imaginations of tech-ecology relationships from the 1960's influence fantasies and anxieties today. It is a virtual reality project, where people are free to roam around a digital winter forest that Jakob Kudsk Steensen created while artist in residence at MASS MoCA, 2016. Inside the forest are relics from past utopian infrastructures and video screens, which depict Steensen's own exploration through derelict snow covered infrastructures from the 1960's in USA. Wearing a costume made of mylar, the material used for space suits as well as survival blankets, Steensen cosplay the role of a shamanistic entity, that tries to make sense of how present day digital media like VR, primal landscapes and infrastructural utopian fantasies relate to eachother. Ultimately, Terratic Animism is a 500x500 meter forest that people explore at their own pace. The forest is made through a combination of photographer, a process of converging photography into 3D models, and hand-made textures and Steensen's video recordings of himself wandering through the the snow covered infrastructures.

Terratic Animism is a fully interactive and room-scale VR work for Oculus Rift  with Touch Controllers and HTC Vive with hand controllers.




Jakob Kudsk Steensen is a Danish artist based in New York, who uses the technologies, visual methods and production pipelines of media and technology industries to develop his own VR art works. Utilizing truly interdisciplinary approaches, Steensen exhibit at both art museums and at technology conferences and expos with his art, as well as film festivals, in attempts to create meaningful discussions between fields. With a decade of experience in using game engines for creative purposes, Steensen develops simulations of futuristic landscapes based on collaborations with scientific departments, public institutions and NGOs. He is concerned with how imagination, technology and ecology intertwine by developing futuristic virtual simulations of existing real-world landscapes, by combining past geologies with speculations on future climate conditions. His work also expands how we perceive the natural elements, by connecting us through VR with the lives of microbes, oceans, plants and entire land-masses. 

His art has recently been exhibited at Carnegie Museum of Art, The Moving Image Fair, NYC, MAXXI, Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Modern Art, CopenX. As an art director, Steensen’s work has been shown at Sundance and TriBeCa film festival, among many other festivals. His work has been featured on Artnet, The Art Newspaper, Hyperallergic, Spike Art Quaterly, ARTREPORT, Politiken, Information, Worm, NEO2 and TSOEG. He has received awards from the Danish Arts Foundation, The Augustinus Foundation, and Lumen Arts Price. He has been artist in residence at Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, AADK, Centra Negra, MASS MoCA, BRIC, Mana Contemporary, and Steensen is currently a member of the technology-culture incubator NEW INC by the New Museum in NYC.

If you are interested in exhibiting or viewing this artistic VR experience, please send an email to us.