Tamiko Thiel

Artist, Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, Munich/Seattle

More about the Artist: Tamiko Thiel’s Homepage





Beyond Reality

The concepts behind virtual and augmented reality are the very oldest basis of all human culture. Since the dawn of the human species, we have imagined virtual worlds as large as the Cosmos, as beautiful as Heaven and as terrifying as Hell. Our artworks began with immersive virtual environments–cave paintings seen by the flickering light of fires–and continued on through temples, gardens and entire planned cities. We have augmented our physical world with site-specific legends and myths since time immemorial. My first memories as a child in Kamakura are cedar scented temples with luminous gold statues, massive trees and rocks consecrated with shimenawa sacred ropes, playing in the hills around the first Shogun Minamoto no Yoritomo’s tomb and seeing performances of Shizuka Gozen’s dance of defiance at Hachiman Shrine. In Kamakura I learned that the virtual, invisible worlds of legend, history and fantasy are closely overlaid onto the physical, visible world of buildings and streets. It is this spirit that I seek to visualize in my virtual reality and augmented reality artworks, where the newest technology gives us telescopes to peer into time and magnifying glasses to illuminate the imagination.