Garden

Universal Objects: Garden
Tanja Vujinović 
Real-time 3D environment, installation
Production: Ultramono, 2015

Universal Objects: Garden is a surreal digital garden full of avatars performing their rituals. It is a realtime 3D work built in a video game engine that enables a visitor to stroll through and explore the surroundings from a first-person perspective. The visitor is invited to explore hidden sounds, corners and avatars' body modifications in this unusual garden.

Environments from the Universal Objects series are non-narrative situations – vibrational, living surroundings filled with elements that are either inanimate or executing simple behavioral patterns through which the situations themselves become like an organism. The majority of 3D objects, like suspended automata, perform minimal ritualistic gestures. They create zones of pulsing play that never transcend into something else but rather exist in a state of non-narrative endlessness.

As dynamic monuments of contemporary times where we represent ourselves through digital performative artefacts – avatars, the series takes universal elements present in generic avatars and their typical surroundings and then translates it all into dynamic monumental yet fragmented bits of digital information floating in infinite digital space. Building our own doubles, our avatars, resembles various body modifications through masking, prosthetics, costumes and finally results in behavioral change and rituals. Avatars are symptomatic, simultaneously actual, real, present and absent through their ethereal being. Imprinted with the sense of importance that classical monumental sculptures have, they expand into space while constantly drawing us back to their origin of raw, generated, digital materiality. 

The 3D objects are dynamic, transformative objects holding the possibility of infinite performative action. They can re-assemble at any given time in order to algorithmically act – to propagate site traffic, advertise, seduce etc. Avatars are our own digital ghosts and fetishes.

The units of these works were made through data bending. This involves converting files to various formats, opening and exporting them from various software programs, manipulating their raw data, and then saving them back to original formats. This process always involves elements of surprise, noise that is unavoidably generated during these conversions, sometimes resulting in unexpected outcomes.