Spilt is a 180 degree, lo-fi, first-person virtual reality experience where the user embodies a decapitated version of my body. Within the simulation, a white, cotton boundary is transgressed and a vulnerable orifice that blurs the inside and outside of my body comes under threat - symbolic of the castration that establishes subjecthood. This experience is an attempt to mimic the teeter - tottering experience of abjection as theorized by Dr. Julia Kristeva and an exploration of the multiplicity of the gaze in VR experiences.
Throughout the medium’s history, Feminists have considered VR for its potential to create a nonlinear, non-hierarchical way of communicating and exploring female subjectivity, but had their doubts given the patriarchal structure of the programming behind the new technology. Fast forward to today and VR experiences are largely designed by white, cisgendered, heterosexual men for white, cisgendered heterosexual men whether they’re totally aware of it or not. Spilt is a subversive work that aims to undermine and question the corporate trajectory of VR as a medium for narrative storytelling – which tends to be linear and hierarchical.
The aesthetic of Spilt is inspired by similar first-person VR pornography experiences and through its content I hope to also rearrange tropes that have forever been perpetuated in 2D media. The work also utilizes the form of vignette to further the experience of abjection which exists in what is not said – and to do away with the expectations associated with narrative storytelling.