3D projection captures new dance possibilities

5 November 2009

A new large-scale 3D stereo projection environment at the Deakin Motion.Lab at Deakin University will be put through its paces with the staging of Aura, a motion capture dance performance.

The work was choreographed by Deakin Motion.Lab Director Dr Kim Vincs in collaboration with John McCormick, Lisa Bolte, Adam Thurlow, Rob Vincs, James Wakeling, Daniel Skovli and Peter Divers.

“Aura fuses ballet with live motion capture to produce a live large-scale 3D stereo performance,” explained Dr Vincs. “It uses the projection environment to transform the movement trajectories of the dancers from live motion capture into 3D projections that surround them.”

As with 3D movies, the audience wears special glasses to view the projected effects.

Dr Vincs said the work was inspired by 1950s dance philosopher Susanne K. Langer.

“Aura explores the potential of motion capture and 3D stereo projection to visualise Susanne Langer’s notion of ‘virtual force’.

“Langer hypothesized that the primary illusion of dance is ‘virtual force’. Dance movement produces symbolic representations of agency and will by evoking ‘forces’ that appear to animate the dancer from within.”

Dr Vincs believes the large-scale 3D stereo projection environment, developed through Deakin University’s Research Infrastructure Development Scheme, has wide potential.

“It offers a way to extend the relationship between dance and technology. When live dance is combined with a 2D image there is always the issue of where you look – at the dancer or at the image on the screen. This environment is allowing us to experiment with bringing together a 3D performer, our dancer, with a 3D image so the audience sees the two elements together.

“The projection environment also enables us to attempt to allow the performance of the dancer to extend beyond their body and into the surrounding space. It really opens up an exciting range of possibilities.”

Deakin Motion.Lab is a highly sophisticated 24 camera motion capture studio which undertakes research into motion capture techniques, movement analysis, interactive performance and real-time motion capture pipelines. The studio undertakes both artistic and scientific projects, and encourages collaborations within and outside Deakin University.

News facts
  • New large-scale 3D stereo projection environment at Deakin Motion.Lab
  • Enables experimentation with 3D performance possibilities
  • Extends the relationship between dance and technology

Media contact

Vanessa Barber
Deakin Media Relations
03 5227 1301; 0488 292 644

Deakin University acknowledges the traditional land owners of present campus sites.

6th November 2009