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How Art Can Beautifully Fuse With Augmented Reality

“Augmented reality is a medium ripe for dynamic and visual storytelling that can extend an artist’s practice beyond the studio or the gallery and into the urban fabric.”

Pipilotti Rist’s “International Liquid Finger Prayer” invites participants to chase a shimmering form.

A new initiative from Apple and the New Museum, [AR]T includes a series of augmented reality Today at Apple sessions and experiences around the world, including an interactive walk featuring works by some of the world’s premier contemporary artists, an in-store session that teaches the basics of creating AR using Swift Playgrounds and an AR art installation viewable in every Apple Store worldwide.

To create the sessions, Apple invited the New Museum, a leading destination for contemporary art in New York, to select seven artists—Nick Cave, Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg, Cao Fei, John Giorno, Carsten Höller and Pipilotti Rist—to participate in an experiential project that is free to the public.

With “Through,” Carsten Höller takes viewers through a portal into a world with no perspective.

These experiential walks take participants through San Francisco, New York, London, Paris, Hong Kong and Tokyo as they encounter works by world-renowned artists, most of whom are working in AR for the first time. Works by Cave, Djurberg and Berg, Cao, Giorno, Höller and Rist connect participants to public spaces such as London’s Trafalgar Square, San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Gardens or New York’s Grand Army Plaza in Central Park.

Using AR, the artists have reimagined or invented new ways to express core themes of their art: Rist’s “International Liquid Finger Prayer” bounces, taunts and sings as participants race to catch a shimmering form, Giorno’s “Now at the Dawn of My Life” is a rainbow journey of homespun wisdom, and “Through” by Höller takes viewers through a portal into a world with no perspective.

John Giorno’s “Now at the Dawn of My Life” features homespun wisdom against the backdrop of their city.

“Augmented reality is a medium ripe for dynamic and visual storytelling that can extend an artist’s practice beyond the studio or the gallery and into the urban fabric,” says Lisa Phillips, Toby Devan Lewis director for the New Museum.

Visitors can come into any Apple Store worldwide and experience artist Nick Cave’s AR piece “Amass.” Using the [AR]T Viewer in the Apple Store app, users can initiate Cave’s interactive installation, which takes the viewer on a journey to view and collect “Ikon Elements” and experience “a universe of positive energy.”

Every Apple Store worldwide offers the chance to experience Nick Cave’s “Amass,” an interactive installation.
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