Talk/workshop Jayachandran Palazhy

Tuesday, 12th September 2023 | 18:15-19:30
Immersive Arts Space (1.J30)

Jay Palazhy, founder and artistic director of the internationally renowned Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts from Banaglore/India, is visiting the Zurich Unversity of the Arts and will hold a talk/workshop in the Immersive Arts Space on Tuesday, 12 September. He will give theoretical and possibly practical insights into his work and the Attakkalari Centre. 

Please, register via email at

Places are limited. 

Further Infos:

afterdust // afterglow

Performance, 22nd September 2023 | 19:00
Immersive Arts Space (1.J30)

The phenomenon of phantom pain is when an individual experiences pain to a limb or an organ that is not physically part of the individual’s body, but perhaps once was and was removed—or was never even there in the first place.

In a radical empathy–turned hallucination, afterdust//afterglow makes allusions to the coping rituals we create around phantom pain, mourning, and death—the literal and the metaphorical, the overlooked witherings that occur within and between us and those right in front of us. Bright, blinding eulogies amidst unwavering resilience. It is the obsession of revisiting a memory in an attempt to find more life inside of it—even as we distort the memory with each access, and these distortions become our truths. 

Concept/sound/visual composition/performance by STUDIO ZYKLOS (Melody Chua, Chi Him Chik, Aiii, AIYA) 

Please register [here]

Luzifers Dream: An Immersive Concert

Work number 51 ½ for piano solo: Scene number 1 of the opera SAMSTAG (Saturday) from Stockhausen’s opera cycle LICHT (Light). Stockhausen`s  first playing instruction: “The piano piece XIII should be performed like a magic spook”. Lucifer lies in a trance on a chair while the assistant Majella plays his dream on the piano.

A fever dream.

Lucifer is a drone. Every whistling, singing and tapping of the assistant on the piano is alienated. The Immersive Arts Space is immersed in animations choreographed by artificial intelligence. Concertgoers can move freely in the hall and listen to the various sound events. A game between man and machine, art and artificially generated values.

Performances took place on: 15th & 16th June 2023

Piano : Arianna Congedi
Sound design, visuals: Jonas Renato Fuelmann
AI Programming : Yuchen Chang
Mentorship : Philippe Kocher
Musical supervision: Till Fellner
Dramaturgical advice: Annette Uhlen

Further support by : Kristina Jungic, Eric Larrieux, Martin Fröhlich, Marek Lamprecht, Paulina Zybinska, Antonella and Ruggero Congedi, Rama Gottfried, Federico Foderaro, Lara Wedekind, Mischa Cheung, Jean-Christophe Hannig, Hirschmann Foundation, Voice Technologies Switzerland.

Atmospheric Forest VR Experience

You are kindly invited to the opening reception of Atmospheric Forest by artists Rasa Smite and Raitis Smite  (RIXC Center for New Media Culture Riga, Latvia), featuring an immersive screening and VR experience, and apéro, taking place on Wednesday, March 8, 2023
in the Immersive Arts Space.

The VR Experience event is following the public lecture by Rasa Smite On Atmospheric Forest taking place a day before – on Tuesday, March 7th 2023.

Book Launch: Conflict Minerals INC.

Thursday, June 30th, 2022

The term “conflict minerals” regroups artisanal tin, tantalum (coltan), tungsten and gold originating from war zones in Central Africa. In his book, Christoph N. Vogel tells the story of how well-intended efforts to solve a global problem have led to white-washing and abetting the continued exploitation of Congo’s resource wealth.

Conflict Minerals INC focuses on a topic that is also addressed by a a joint production of the Immersive Arts Space and the Department of Geography of the University of Zurich. The exhibition Kamituga | Digital Gold allows insights behind the shiny surface of the mobile tech industry and invites the visitors to engage with the concrete challenges and living conditions of artisanal gold miners in the region of Kamituga (Democratic Republic of Congo). [more]

Lecture by Takashi Ikegami

Tuesday, June 28th, 2022 | Kino Toni, ZHdK

Even now, I am often asked as a scientist”Why do you also do art projects? I wonder why. When I do research on complex systems, there is a lot of fascinating data that I can’t reproduce (I forget the initial values and parameters) when I do computer-based simulation experiments. Science is about reproducibility, and if you do it 10 million times, you want the same event to happen 9999 times; if it happens once in 10,000 times, that’s not science, that’s art. I consider that once-in-a-lifetime interest to be art. This talk will introduce a series of works created since 2005 with a range of collaborators including the composer Keiichiro Shibuya, sound artist evala, and photographer Kenshuu Shintsubo, as well as recent works based on a custom designed android called Alter in order to discuss the meaning, possibility and challenges of the intersection between the arts and the sciences.

Takashi Ikegami is Professor in General Systems Science in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at The University of Tokyo and principle investigator of the Ikegami Lab. He received his PhD in physics from The University of Tokyoand is internationally known for his contributions to the development of complex systems science and artificial life. Some of his results have been published in Life in Motion (Seidosha, 2007) and Between Man and Machine (Kodansha, 2016). He has also been active 2005 in the arts with works such as “Filmachine” (with Keiichiro Shibuya, YCAM, 2006), “Mind Time Machine” (YCAM, 2010), “Long Good bye” (with Kenshu Shimpo, Japan Alps Festa, 2017), “Offloaded Agency” (Barbican, 2019), among many other.

Emerging Talents: Stella Speziali & Chris Elvis Leisi

ZHdK Talent Talk in the context of Swiss Digital Days

Stella Speziali is research associate in the Immersive Arts Space and will talk about her research project on the topic of digital humans.

Thanks to technological advancements the creation of virtual characters is more accessible than ever. New time-saving platforms have been created, thus democratising the access to high-fidelity, real-time, fully-rigged, diverse, portable, 3D human characters.
With My Digital Twin, I wish to understand better the creation and deployment of digital humans with different critical approaches. Furthermore, I am ethically questioning their applications in entertainment, marketing, art, and beyond.

Chris Elvis Leisi, research associate in the Immersive Arts Space and a graduate of the ZHdK Game Design program, talks about his graduation project Virtual Real World.

In today’s VR games, the body often serves as the controller. However, when the player enters the virtual world, the connection to the physical environment is often lost. This master’s thesis deals with immersion mechanics in Virtual Reality and reveals the potentials that arise when one’s own home can be integrated into the virtual world as a play area.

The ZHdK talent talk took place on November 4th at the Kino Toni.
Speaker: Stella Speziali (en), Chris Elvis Leisi (de)
Host: Christian Iseli

Focal Field

Jordan Juras & Davide Luciani are Artists in Residence 2021 at the Immersive Arts Space and ICST.

Focal Field explores the spectrum of presence felt in augmented sonic reality – from the intimacy of closeness to the abstracted relation between disembodied voice, sound, and space. Perceptual relations between the real and virtual are tightened by situating augmented reality sound within synthetic reverberant architectures, and reinforcing localisation through light. The installation engages with our necessity to rationalise any aural manifestation. These fields of fragmentation – between the spectrums of connection and disconnection – have led the duo to draft a sound space where the voice, the Phonè, and its experience become the object and subject of aesthetic speculation.

The presentations took place on Thursday, October 22nd 2021.

Dreaming of Time and Space

Photo by Regula Bearth © ZHdK 2020

The installation and immersive performance took place between October 6th and 9th 2021

See trailer of the performance here

In the ongoing research project “The Umbrella Project” the use of 3D audio and projection mapping are explored in order to achieve a sense of immersion without isolating participants from the real world, essentially, enabling an imaginary fantasy world to come to life in our own. We employ multiple levels of 3D audio and projection mapping (both directly within and on the umbrella, as well as throughout the room itself) in order to transport the participant into this virtual world. 

As such, we can consider the umbrellas, and the overall system of which they are a part, to be an instrument of sorts, in that they literally allow us to compose and explore reactive sonic environments in 6 degrees of freedom (6 DoF). Additionally, the umbrellas can also function as a measurement instrument, much as a stethoscope does as a sonic instrument for medical examination; however, in this case, through the immersive experiences they purvey, the umbrellas enable us to examine the nature of our own perception of reality. 

The end goal of the project is to create a series of navigable compositions in the form of exploratory sonic worlds, as well as interactive experiences where the participants’ behaviors (relative to each other and the world) shape the sonic and visual environment. Furthermore, we are investigating sonic and visual paradigms where the umbrellas can function both as objects existing in and can interact with the virtual world, as well as being windows onto these other worlds.

Crew: Eric Larrieux (direction, 3D audio) , Stella Speziali (projection mapping), Mariana Vieira Grünig (scenography)

ZFICTION.21 – Virtual Production

The first edition of the feature film conference ZFICTION took place in June 2021 and focused the versatile promises of the new tools for film production. Filmmakers and researchers explored the question of how virtual production will change the near future of fictional storytelling in film and what new challenges this will bring.

In the conference exhibition Immersive Arts Space hosted a virtual production shooting situation, offered hands-on experiences with the cineDesk and showcased the virtual production method that filmmaker in residence Andreas Dahn had applied for his animation film and VR experience Home in the Distance.

On the conference website the talks, discussions and elements of the exhibtion can be revisited.