Cosmoramama was made for HANDS gallery in Oakland and will be open from February 2018-May 2018. Everything in the space references a single VR scene. Everything is for sale. And it turns out it might be illegal to sell any of it. IDK. You decide. Here's what we put in the fliers:
COSMORAMARAMA is the artist's portrayal of a landscape imagined and constructed in Virtual Reality. It features a range of polished steel, bronze, silver, resin, and nylon sculptures, with delicate fabric tapestries layered over fluid steel forms, and the digital environment from whence they all were derived. The physical and virtual work together paradoxically to create an environment one can never perceive in its whole.
Allsbrook often spends more time in a headset than she spends awake; she identifies with user interfaces. She, and many others like her, have demonstrated art in Virtual Reality as a use case—but this is already the winter of VR. In the space of a couple of years, and several corporate reorganizations, her world has begun to disappear around her. But can it really be said to be her own world? Maybe not: according to Facebook and Google’s licensing agreements, all assets generated using their direct VR creation tools cannot be owned by their creators.
Virtual reality was not the first product to use artistic context to create commercial value —the creator of the panorama made social, immersive tech with the express intent of charging admission. A collection of these diverse panoramic perspectives, which make up a geographically transcendent environment, is known as a Cosmorama.
Wesley Allsbrook is a commercial artist who came to the Bay Area to work for the now shuttered Oculus Story Studio, at the height of the VR boom in 2015. While at Story Studio she drew and art directed the animated VR film Dear Angelica, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, featured at the Venice Film Festival, awarded at Raindance, and nominated for an Emmy. She has made VR work for The Discovery Channel, Felix and Paul, Google, Maria Bello VR Productions, Porsche, Warner Brothers, and more. She lives in Los Angeles and works everywhere.