Sunjammer 6: A Tale Blown by a Solar Breeze


I began by thinking about two characters across oceans of time and how they would communicate. One a mathematician, one an engineer. They might speak using mathematics. I was looking at our current moment and the relentless, exhausting polarization. This piece is really about the tension between the fear of knowledge and the constructs humans use to build language and symbol systems that speak about what we can’t see, what we can’t touch. Mathematics, physics, the evolution of models of the cosmos…and the forces of attraction between heavenly bodies…or humans.

Sunjammer 6: A Tale Blown by a Solar Breeze is a a love story, a conversation between two virtual characters connecting across time, each pushing back against an encroaching dark age.

Hypatia, a Hellenistic astronomer, mathematician and philosopher assassinated in 415 AD returns 10 years in our future as a furious ghost. As she navigates her new environment she absorbs what has happened over time and encounters a NASA engineer building a solar array off world power station.

A mixed reality installation for six or more viewers, Sunjammer 6 uses custom AI to allow virtual characters to see and react to multiple people in a room by tracking and responding to their movement with interactive visuals and sound.

The project is a visual novel, a movie, and a machine that tells stories. A poetic and dreamlike experience, viewers activate the process and become embedded in another dimension.

The core of Hypatia is an AI that responds to body language, to the movement and gestures of multiple viewers, and reacts to them with what appears to be a complex personality. She sees how many people are in the room and can interpret types of movement or motivation and react accordingly.

This innovative format is a fusion of installation, cinema and performance for viewers moving in a space.  Versions will exist for linear performance and for installation. Viewers move around the triangular scrim and engage with Hypatia and other characters and elements of the narrative. 

RECENT WORK BY TONI DOVE: The Dress That Eats Souls 

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