SAYSSI

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INSTALLATION FOR BFA 2016

Sayssi is a spirit world, a home to mystical creatures, an essence that transcends mental and physical boundaries. It’s also a dance; a fluid, creative catharsis that manifests the divinity of math and nature. Recently It’s become the word I distill my life practice into, and I'm curious to see where it goes. I call my art sayssi, I release music and perform using the name sayssi, I call it sayssi when I experience something inexplicable. Sayssi can exist in the deep conversation between two people on the exact same wavelength. There is something sayssi in the digital platform itself, and fact that we can build and experience an entire universe using 3D software and virtual reality. 

For the SAIC Spring 2016 BFA show I made a virtual reality installation including video, sound, prints, and a virtual landscape in Unity. On a wall are two vertically mounted TV monitors, flanked by a computer monitor, and a poster. It’s an imaginary world with its own vocabulary; each component in the installation has a sayssi name.  The poster is a glossary of sayssi terminology, with drawings of each named object or creature, and of the components in the installation.  The monitors (fuzu boxes) play animations. The topmost animation (rendered using Blender and Premier) displays all of the sayssi creatures, dancing and moving through their natural habitat.  Foremost in each animation are 3D extruded graffiti-like line work beings known as slollas.  The bottom fuzu box displays a rendered animation of the central meeting areas in the virtual landscape. These locations, known as hut(ta) are spirit 'hotspots' that show the interfaces where humans connect with the spirt world. Suspended from the ceiling in front of the installation are the oculus rift and headphones; putting them on enables the viewer to enter virtual landscape and listen to a soundtrack synced to movements within the virtual 3D space. The mounted computer monitor (fuzua box) displays the virtual world that the oculus is seeing in stereoscopic view, so that others outside of the virtual scape I can see what's shown in the oculus.

Wearing the vibuendra, one is immersed in the sayssi world. The viewer moves along an animated path, running into various sayssi creatures.  Once immersed, it is understood that the virtual world is a gamescape, with objectives. Floating 3D text prompts the player to help the creatures through a variety of emotional dilemmas. Players touch a creature’s zhinx, which impels it past obstacles.  In the gamescape, the player's contact with the creature is advice; it restore the creatures back to emotional health, which the player can see when the creatures change shape and color. When the viewer puts on the oculus and enters the sayssi world, they are immediately equipped with the emotional capacity to deal with all emotional strife, human or sayssi. 

Playable online version and video coming soon.