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Virtual Cities

1 brief 2 making 3 results

Connecting the digital and physical worlds



A thinktank of mixed media design in VR, with renowned architects and RIBA.

We invited several of London’s leading architects, such as Wilkinson Eyre and Populous, to participate in a design think tank that utilized emerging technologies of 2015. Our focus was on combining physical models/spaces with virtual design methods to better understand how VR and AR can be used in the design. Several live demos and workshops were held with the RIBA. The project was then reformatted and displayed in our art gallery in London, existing both physically and virtually.

Physically, it takes the shape of a cityscape made up of foam blocks that can be walked around and sat on, assembled in an abstract manner.
Virtually, it’s an immersive digital painting, drawn in the exact position of the blocks using Tilt Brush technology.



Combining the physical with the digital.

We used the HTC Vive to scan the space, giving an accurate position of the blocks visually within the headset, transporting you to this Virtual City. The VR experience is heightened as you can walk through the space and touch the physical towers. This makes for a far more immersive feeling, as haptic feedback and a connection to the real world is amplified. Our Creative Director, Paul Nicholls, painted an abstract cityscape over the course of two weeks on top of the blocks in VR.



A new way to design, an experiential form of theatre.

Everyone involved got a lot out of the experiment. The ways in which architects could directly sketch in 3d space, around block models of their site was an eye-opening experience for all. Both the painting process and the resulting artwork were projected onto the gallery wall as a form of visual theatre.
The digital painting from Virtual Cities can be downloaded straight to the:
"I’m really interested in creating installations which combine digital medias with physical spaces. VR is a truly immersive medium, but very disconnected with the physical world. So this tries to connect the two in an artistic format. There is a sense of surprise and wonder when people first put on the headset and the bland grey blocks transform into a vibrant, intricate cityscape".
Paul Nicholls


Factory Fifteen
Paul Nicholls Artist
Wilkinson Eyre Participant
Populous Participant
RIBA Event Organiser