Vertigo in the City

I will be in conversation with John Golding, Professor of Psychology at the University of Westminster, on Friday 21st October (tomorrow! at time of writing), chaired by Josie Kane, author of The Architecture of Pleasure: British Amusement Parks 1900-1939. We’re speaking as part of the Falling Away Symposium, a one-day event held in conjunction with the Falling Away Exhibition, an exhibition of Catherine Yass’s vertiginous film installations at Ambika P3 (tickets available).

Josie, John and I will discuss my fascination with the Haunted Swing – a late 19th century amusement mechanism that is still popular today, and present in rides such as Hex at Alton Towers. We’ll explore how the symptoms of vertigo might be simulated as evidence of a new thrilling virtual reality, and also how one might design to elicit vertigo for real. I’ll show examples from my swing-based digital VR artworks: Oscillate, VR Playground and Volo: Dreams of Flight; alongside this summer’s latest Ride with VR (open this half term on Brighton Palace Pier’s Twister fairground ride).

This exhibition and symposium build on our original 2015 Vertigo in the City project, led by Davide Deriu, Reader in Architectural History and Theory at the School of Architecture and Cities, University of Westminster. A record of that project can be found via the same link. A copy of the original accompanying publication, containing short essays by John (p.14) Josie (p.30) and I (p.42) can now be accessed directly here.

WARNINGS: 1. pdf contains photograph of Michael Jackson dangling baby over balcony; 2. previous warning may classify as clickbait