Virtual Touch PhD

Virtual Touch PhD thesis by Stenslie (with Cover)

Virtual Touch 2010

This is the pdf version of my printed phd available from the Oslo School of Architecture and Design, www.aho.no . Please note that this pdf is without a list of errata in the text. Also please visit AHO for the official version including cover. If you download it: enjoy 🙂  I would also very much appreciate feedback.

Virtual Touch
by Stahl Stenslie
stenslie@gmail.com

The central focus of this thesis is the use and experience of touch in artistic, multimodal and computer-based environments. It presents how it feels to touch and be touched in such environments. Further it gives an overview of the role of vibrotactile stimulation and corporeal interaction in interactive art, showing how touch can be used to construct meaningful experiences.

Touch is approached through practice based research in the arts. Specifically it looks at how bodysuits can function as a two-way tactile display, conveying vibrotactile feedback to the body and interfacing the human to the computer through touch. Haptic stimuli in general and vibrotactile stimuli in particular, can have the effect of making the virtual appear more real. A central contribution of the thesis is the explanation of how touch can be content in itself and form so called haptic storytelling.

Theoretically touch is investigated through a phenomenological approach on how the world of our experience is constituted for us. A phenomenology of touch allow us to understand the interplay between subjective, felt embodiment and the psychophysically contextualized work of art

New in this thesis and approach are the combinations of the various theories on and about touch, but in particular the application of this to works of art where touch appears as a genuine artistic medium. This contributes to the definition of new practices of inquiry and knowledge making.

Ståle Stenslie (1965) is a media artist, researcher and curator in the field of experimental art and interface technologies. He has exhibited and lectured at major international events like ISEA, DEAF, Ars Electronica and SIGGRAPH. He represented Norway at the 5th Istanbul biennial and won the Grand Prize of the Norwegian Council for Cultural Affairs.  Between 2001 and 2005 he was a professor in New Media at the Academy of Media Arts, Cologne, Germany. From 2005 till 2007 he was the founding dean of the Faculty of Visual Arts, Oslo National Academy of the Arts.

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