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Themesicon: navigation pathOverview of Media Articon: navigation pathImmersion
Telematic Dreaming (Sermon, Paul), 1992Traces; Vision System (Penny, Simon), 1998

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«Telematic Dreaming»

Paul Sermon is a British artist from Roy Ascott's school whose work integrates immersive aspects within the framework of telematic art. He became well known for his telematic installation in the early 1990s and has taught at several art schools in England and Germany. In «Telematic Dreaming» (1992), Sermon uses video-conferencing to connect people in different places, which enables communication with mime and gestures and results in astonishing, almost intimate encounters. In «Telematic Dreaming» a bed is the medium for high-definition images; images of a partner who is perhaps thousands of kilometers away, in live and intimate proximity. The clear projection of another person, who is able to react almost in real time to the other's movements on the bed, is so surprisingly suggestive that to touch the image of the body that is projected onto the sheet becomes an intimate act. Sermon's declared aim was to expand the user's sense of touch: obviously it was not possible to actually touch the other virtual bedmate, but one experienced the


suggestion of touching through rapid and vigorous or tender and reflective movements. Many users said that they found it a very contemplative experience; a sensory impression achieved synaesthetically where hand and eye fuse. This quality distinguishes both «Telematic Dreaming» and other works that Sermon produced in subsequent years.


Whereas Goldberg's users log on to a website to perform actions in a distant place, in Simon Penny's work in progress «Traces» the interface is absolute. Using a link that was completely new at the time, in 1999 the Australian media artist, who taught for many years at the Carnegie Mellon University's Robotics Institute, connected three CAVEs in different locations to produce a single translocal immersive image space. Users enter virtual spheres, spaces of sound, and experience a gentle vibration of the floor. The image of a user in Tokyo can be seen in a CAVE in Berlin, or vice versa. Four infrared stereocameras transform in

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