Ariadne’s Thread

Ariadne's Thread

A Practice based PhD Research Project​

Project Team:

Soudhamini Soudhamini – Lead
Dr Rosemary Woodcock, Dr Martin Potter, Dr Lienors Torres – Supervisors


Following the Deleuzian injunction that ‘A theory has to be used, it has to work … You don’t go back to a theory, you make new ones, you have others to make,’ (2004:208) this research project looks at devising a theory for the emergent medium of CVR – Cinematic Virtual Reality –  consistent with its making and viewing parameters,. and consonant with the philosophical notion of the Virtual.

Theoretical Framework​

The term Maya  in Indian philosophy, loosely translated as ‘illusion’ in colonial times, is better understood I argue, as the virtual in the Deleuzian sense of the term. ‘The characteristic of virtuality,’ says Deleuze, ‘is to exist in such a way that it is actualized by being differentiated and is forced to differentiate itself, to create its lines of differentiation, in order to be actualized […] Evolution is actualization, actualization is creation (1991: 96-98).’  Maya understood thus is the principle of Immanence that ‘measures’ out and actualizes the immeasurable virtual, rendering  manifest the creative principle inherent to Life.  VR technology is predicated on creating ‘an inclusive, extensive, surrounding,  and vivid illusion of reality to the senses of a human participant’ (Slater,1997:606). CVR used critically can call out this illusion peeling away phenomena to reveal that ‘consciousness [alone] remains and is real’ (Lanier, 2017:51).

Award Nomination​
This work received a 2020 Premiers Design Awards Finalist Award

This work was programmed by Paul Hammond ​with graphic design by Scott Jackson