Office of Everyone

The 14th Factory

A series of physical artworks reimagined for digital, and a narrative manifesto.

The 14th Factory

Commissioned by our boundlessly talented friends at Unthinkable, we worked with the internationally renowned artist Simon Birch and the 14th Factory team in Hong Kong to develop a series of new digital artworks, based on the physical works featured in the upcoming show. We described these reimaginings as ‘digital manifestations’.

A digital presentation of a physical artwork is always a representation rather than a reproduction. Photographs or video of art rarely evokes the same set of emotions that come from experiencing it in a space. Even a faithful 3D render fails to capture the aura of physical work. However, technology presents new and exciting opportunities for storytelling, detached from the fundamental forces and limitations of the physical world.

Dualism is a recurring theme through The 14th Factory and Simon Birch’s work. A cycle of rise and fall was present throughout the first show in LA. This duality is particularly apparent in the installation artwork ‘Clear Air Turbulence’. Our digital manifestation of this artwork allows the audience to experience this dualism, through the unique interaction of going above and below a dark lake of water in virtual reality (VR). Above the water, the work is presented as a straight VR representation or blueprint. Below the waterline, the audience can delve deeper into the underlying themes of the work. They are surrounded by an ethereal aviation graveyard. They can explore abandoned planes, and listen to fragments of narrative hidden around the wreckage.

We also developed a narrative manifesto through a process of collaboration and co-creation with the 14th Factory artists and producers. Using themes collected from the artists and their work, we developed a coherent narrative journey that connect the disparate artworks and artists around a central flexible story. This evolving document exists as a clear creative manifesto for new artists joining the project.

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