Alice is a four channel XR piece created by Media Artist Claudia Hart for exhibition with a Vive VR environment. This version was produced for The Transfer "Download," curated by Kelani Nichole, for a special presentation at Christie’s Rockefeller Plaza in conjunction with their ART + TECH Summit on AI from June 25–28, 2019.

Music by Danielle DeGruttola
Recording and Audio Mix by Edmund Campion
Editing by Meredith Leich

Alice is a machine for thinking: a virtual chamber for repose and contemplation. It is the fourth work loosely inspired by Alice in Wonderland, created by media artist Claudia Hart in collaboration with Edmund Campion at the Center for New Music and Audio Technology at UC Berkeley.

Alice mashes 3D animation, motion-captured ballet and music improvised live in the VR world, and then recaptured and placed in the bodies of music avatars who deform to the music. It feeds-back the virtual and the live, blending them together in a liminal, uncanny mix. The work consists of 2 parallel representations, coinciding in a single exhibition space. The first is a four-channel high-definition movie projected on three or four walls. It is a 3D animation rendered anamorphically as a panoramic expanse. The second is a VR surround environment mapped into the same physical space, built out as Vive VR. The dual spaces exist simultaneously though each is a construction of different epoques from the art history of representations: the age of capture and the analog camera and the current digital age. Hart has conceived of this doubling as liminal, a construction made possible through the “queering” of space and likens it to the technology theorist Donna Haraway’s notion of the Cyborg as first described in her 1983 Manifesto, where the writer imagined a Utopian future in which advanced bio-technologies would liberate human culture from the constraints of traditional gender binaries. As liminal, Alice constructs all of VR as a paradigmatic philosopher's hut, thinking specifically of Wittgenstein and his Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, citing Alice in Wonderland because of its inverted logic, yet at the same time, Wittgenstein's critique of logic.

Alice Unchained was created with the support of the Center for New Music and Audio Technology at UC Berkeley
Motion Capture Technical Producer: Stéphane Dalbera
Motion Capture Director: Jeremy Meunier
Motion Capture Studio Courtesy Of: Game On, Montreal
Motion Capture Post Production Courtesy Of: Atopos, Paris, in partnership with the Bachelor in Real-Time-3D Program, HECTIC, Paris

Software support:  Jeff Lubow, Musical Systems Designer, CNMAT

With thanks to Jeremy Wagner and Andrew Blanton at CNMAT