somepeople’s playful VR installation provides personal space in busy urban environments

during the LA design festival, brooklin-based studio somepeople presented the sky gazing tower, a VR installation that provides personal space to people who live in crowded urban environments and face everyday challenges such as social anxiety, stress, and agoraphobia. addressing the challenges of contemporary global lifestyles, the installation gives space and time to each individual to stare at the sky alone, while being surrounded by hanging translucent orange membranes that diffuse the light and create a soothing environment. inside the physical installation, a VR environment allows users to modify the structure, personalize their private space, and design their own tower.somepeople playful VR installation provides personal space in busy urban environments
the skygazing tower in LA design festival
all images by paul vu

 

 

selected as one of the installations that respond to the 2019 LA design festival theme ‘design with purpose’, somepeople‘s sky gazing tower is a low-cost, lightweight structure that can be easily assembled and transported to provide people with personal space within crowded environments. the installation consists of a white steel frame and vinyl orange membrane stripes that hang loosely from the top ring, covering the upper part of the visitor’s body while leaving the lower part visible to the public, making clear that the tower is occupied. the translucency of the membranes allows a subtle connection with the external environment while, at the same time, it provides a place of retreat. somepeople playful VR installation provides personal space in busy urban environments
children enjoying the view of the tower from below

 

 

within the physical installation, somepeople exhibited a VR environment, giving the visitors of the festival the opportunity to virtually modify the structure and define their own personal space according to their needs and preferences. each visitor can change the size, color, and materiality of the tower using the VR user interface, embracing in this way the diversity of citizens in big cities and allowing them to explore their personal space and redefine its boundaries and aesthetics.


the interior is a warm, soothing environment that offers personal space to the visitors

somepeople playful VR installation provides personal space in busy urban environments
visitors have the change to take a moment and stare at the sky


more than one visitors can enjoy the view at the same time


interior view of the tower framing the sky


visitors can isolate themselves and enjoy their moments of privacy


the orange vinyl strips create playful shadows


the boundaries of each person’s private space vary

somepeople playful VR installation provides personal space in busy urban environments
in a VR environment, visitors can modify the dimensions, color, and material of the tower, until they feel comfortable in it

 

 

 

project info:

 

 

architect: somepeople

fabrication: fathom&form

VR development: christopher morse

location: LA design festival, los angeles, US

 

 

 

the LA design festival takes place every year in june to celebrate the rich design culture of los angeles by hosting events throughout the city. now in its 9th edition, the festival showcases the best of the local design scene as well as some exciting national and international voices from disciplines such as architecture and interiors, to graphic, industrial, fashion, set, costume, and experiential design. with over 50 events throughout LA, which include conversations, parties, tours, awards, and more, the festival is the only citywide event of its kind.

 

 

 

designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

 

edited by: sofia lekka angelopoulou | designboom