The Avatars installation, a new exhibit put on by artists So Kanno and yang02, is ostensibly on display at the Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media in Yamaguchi City, Japan. However, the art doesn't rightly exist in that location alone: rather, the Avatars installation cleverly combines the digital with the physical, allowing patrons from anywhere in the world to engage with it.
Avatars consists of several different objects of various sizes. Some of these are household objects, like a fan or a car, while others are more obscure, such as a fake Roman bust. No matter the object, each is embedded with a camera, a microphone, and a motor that engenders some degree of movement. On the Avatars website, users can select an object to "ride" (as the installation terms it,) looking through these cameras, speaking through the microphones, and controlling those motors, thus engaging virtually with the people in the physical space.
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