It’s been five long years waiting for the first real interactive experience from animator David OReilly — ever since successfully fooling the world (myself shamefully included) with his iHologram concept video — but the time has finally arrived.
In advance of its public debut at the upcoming Pictoplasma character design festival, he’s just released Character Mirror, an Oculus Rift experience that lets you embody all the characters from his multi-award winning short, The External World.
Created with some technical assistance from Kokoromi member Damien Di Fede, and in keeping with Pictoplasma’s 10th anniversary ‘Portraits’ theme (which also has birthed this amazing Tumblr of character-selfies) — the Rift experience places you in a virtual gallery space with only one exhibit: a mirror that reflects ‘you’ as a rotating array of cast members.
For as stripped-down an experience as it is, it’s a weirdly haunting & compelling one — each character never dropping “eye-contact” even as you do your best to look away — particularly when inhabiting some of OReilly’s let’s just call them like less-adorable creations (all the character rigs of which he’s Creative Commons released over here for your own Unity/Rift experiments).
You can grab a Windows & Mac version of the Character Mirror now via OReilly’s website, or find it on display at Pictoplasma when the festival opens in Berlin this May, and join me in hoping that this is only the first of a long line of interactive OReilly-ness.
If this is the first time you’ve run across OReilly’s work, I’ll also embed The External World in full below, which it sort of goes without saying that you should dim the lights & watch in its entirety straight away, before moving on to his earlier Please Say Something.
Not to get too event-heavy with the day, but there are a few more events worth not-missing this weekend, starting with Arse Elektronika, now in its sixth year and coming to San Francisco Thursday, September 27th, through Sunday, September 30th.
The conference, organized by Johannes Grenzfurthner & Günther Friesinger of Austrian art/game team monochrom (more on them back here), along with curator and Kokoromi member Heather Kelley, is centered on the interplay between “sex, technology, games, and culture”, and will include lectures, workshops, and the Prixxx Arse Elektronika 2012 Awards, “an unobjectionable award for sex machines, orgasmotrons and teledildonics”.
Most notably, this year’s conference will see talks and game demonstrations from familiar faces including Heather Kelley — who created the “intuitive and stylish vibrator interface” OhMiBod Remote for iPhone with Kokoromi’s Damien Di Fede & Tiger Style’s Amanda Williams, as well as Molleindustria‘s Paolo Pedercini, Santa Ragione‘s Pietro Righi Riva (whose Awkward Sex Game is pictured at top, and who now has the amazing honor of owning AwkwardSex.com) and a whole boatload more who you can see here.