Future Reality no.21 — Daydreaming / Poetics of Space — Pedro Osuna

“Daydream transports the dreamer outside the immediate world to a world that bears the mark of infinity.” — Gaston Bachelard

There is a daydreamer within all of us. Peering over every thought, they leave no boulder of a concept, stone of postulation, or crumb of inspiration unturned. Here, the daydreamer enters a fluid state — completely immersed within their imagination. Thoughts swim with no resistance, and streams of color, memory, and text intertwine with one another.

Daydreaming is a beautiful thing. It shows the brilliant relationship humans have with ideation, human consciousness, and intimate spaces (or, as some individuals might call it, a “home-state”). And, of course, daydreaming allows unconventional doors to open within our minds. But, what sparks the intense immersion of daydreaming? How does this very perpetual act of daydreaming transfer into current technologies of our day?

For Bachelard, “immensity in the intimate domain is intensity, an intensity of being, the intensity of a being evolving in a vast perspective of intimate intensity. . . . When the dreamer really experiences the word immense, he sees himself liberated from his cares and thoughts . . .” As years went on, I realize how true liberation may stem from the intensity of this immersion. Then, this notion of immersion became intertwined with my thoughts on current technologies of today — Virtual Reality being a prime example of one. Various human experiences — from loving, creating, resting, entertaining, playing, socializing, and, now, daydreaming — have influenced my views and research with Virtual Reality. For the purposes of this post, I shall discuss the relations between the philosophy of Gaston Bachelard, the work of composer Pedro Osuna in his recent work Poetics of Space, and the thought process behind two new Virtual Reality project.

As an eight year old girl, I would spend hours in my background daydreaming worlds around me; the trampoline, the brook, even my kitchen — all were intimate spaces where I achieve[d] utmost peace and creativity by giving life to poetic images within the walls of [my] private domestic spaces.

To grasp the concept of immensity and to create such vastness in a poetic fashion is to concentrate the intensity of the human experience. It seems like there can be massive potential here. To be able to harness the full scale of immensity, I believe Virtual Reality is one of the most seamless tools to do so. Why not fulfill my curiosity with my own hands?

This is why, in collaboration with composer, and dear friend, Pedro Osuna, a creation of a Virtual Reality 360-degree film translation of the performance, “Poetics of Space”, is now in progress. For more details on its its first performance of October 2018, click here.

Bachelard acknowledged in The Psychoanalysis of Fire, “The axes of poetry and of science are opposed to one another from the outset. All that philosophy can hope to accomplish is to make poetry and science complementary, to unite them as two well-defined opposites.”7

Virtual Reality is a science, while music is poetry. Virtual Reality is a science that demands to have a more developed structure, and to be worked within its visual constraints — for example, the constraint of recording the entire 360-degree space instead of a single snapshot through a traditional camera lens. The poetry within Pedro’s project is one that, like Bachelard explained, will have to become married somehow in Virtual Reality. With this particular project, I will be taking immense amounts of inspiration from past experience in film/VR production.

Rehearsal, String Quartet and Piano / Berklee College of Music (bottom — left); Rehearsal, dancer Odessa Anderson and painter Fotini Christophillis / Boston Conservatory (bottom — right)

At the end of the day, I feel incredibly honored to be embarking on such a project within Virtual Reality, and with such talented and incredibly passionate artists. I hope to execute a vision that will fully immerse the viewer into another sphere of reality; I wish to do this on a level of sheer immerse similar to that of daydreaming. My questions moving forward are as follows:

Technical: How long shall the piece be? Will the final project be the entire scope of 37 minutes? What if it was 5 minutes? Will/can it be broken up into sections? What length of time would be the most effective towards delivering the most intimately immersive/articulate/effetive experience for the viewer?

Narrative: How can this performance be told through a narrative light? Can another tier of reality (perhaps, memory or fantasy), be included in this?

Editing: How can editing become harnessed to its fullest potential as an artistic tool in this project? In what technical ways (i.e. overlay, speed, color, escalation, opacity, montage, etc.) can editing shape the experience the viewer will have?

Philosophical: Where can we give life to poetic images, to private domestic spaces, in Virtual Reality? Where and how can we scale the notion of immensity in Virtual Reality?

In the last weekend of October, I shall be driving up to Boston to shoot this project.