New York’s gala scene is well into its annual summer break, but there’s still plenty of action inside Cipriani 25 Broadway. For the month of August, the downtown event space will host SuperReal, an immersive digital art exhibition created by multimedia production studio Moment Factory.
Riffing on the architecture and history of the landmarked building, the Montreal-based studio was inspired to create an experiential installation exploring the intersection of new and old technologies. The ticketed exhibition, with a 45-minute run time, incorporates projection mapping and large-scale multimedia art, leading visitors through five distinct interactive environments in the space. One of the environments, “Imagination Pollination,” offers a new way of looking at the venue, as blinking lights trace the architectural detailing.
“We thought it’s such an interesting thing right now to juxtapose layers onto reality, because where the future’s tending to bring us is the digital and the physical worlds are merging so that they’re indistinguishable,” said Moment Factory cofounder and executive creative director Sakchin Bessette. “We’re adding layers of virtual reality to everything and other realities to our world — whether it’s the Internet, which is becoming as real as reality, or if it’s entertainment.”
While the blurred boundaries of reality are typically cause for alarm and tend to receive a more tepid interpretation by artists, SuperReal takes an optimistic approach to the future of human experiences and interactions in a digital environment.
“We want people to be inspired, we want people to leave in awe,” Bessette said. “I think to make the world a better place we need to experiment in doing that. And we need to contribute — and not just critique all these new technologies, but actually find ways to engage with them.”