BétaLab0421 – Autofading_Se disparaître


The work uses virtual reality and non-linear sound composition technologies to poetically explore the presence of human beings in their environment. By wearing the headset, the viewer is immersed in a forest generated by point cloud data, which evolves according to their observational attitude and type of attention they give to it.

The experience begins in a virtual environment swept by wind, snow and fog. If the viewer moves slowly, the wind dies down and the fog dissipates. Various noises gradually emerge: a gurgling stream, a flutter of beating wings, a crackle or the rustle of dry grass underfoot. The more still the viewer becomes and simply observes, the more the micromovements of the forest become perceptible and multiply. Sounds and animals seem to come closer, birds appear, a woodpecker drums on a tree… This peaceful environment full of delicate details collapses as soon as the observer makes a sudden gesture. Then the storm returns, leaving only the fading shadows of volatile particles behind.

Caroline Gagné’s artistic practice is based on a sensitivity to the places she explores. With a critical approach, she examines our relationship to what surrounds us. For her residency project, she proposes the creation of an evolving situation that calls for an attitude of observation and attention, a willingness to listen. To do this, she intends to invite the visitor to disturb an ecosystem in equilibrium, which here takes the form of an interactive work created from virtual reality technologies and 3D sound spatialization. Thus, by putting forward the opposition between real and virtual presence, Gagné hopes to poetically problematize the presence of human beings in their environment, considering the irreversible impacts that we know today to this presence.

“What struck me when I experienced virtual reality was the sense that the body becomes an empty space: it exits and sees around it what it is being shown, but remains invisible. This made me aware of an important and recurrent aspect in my work, from an angle that I had never explicitly examined before, that of the presence that is nevertheless intrinsic to the use of interactivity and sound in my installations.” – Caroline Gagné


An original work by Caroline Gagné


Technological integration: Renaud Gervais

Recordings: Caroline Gagné and Christophe Havard

Original music: Christophe Havard
Composition of the sound environment: Caroline Gagné

Modelling of the virtual boulder and fabrication of the real sculptural element: Carl-Dave Lagotte


Co-production: Sporobole, 0/1-Hub numérique Estrie, La Chambre Blanche

With the support of the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec

playbutton metabeta 1