Lu Yang: Delusional World
Virtual Motion Capture Performance

On 11 Nov 2020, Lu Yang presented a virtual motion-capture performance as a result of a cancelled live in-person performance at Federation Square in Melbourne earlier in the year. The performance was reworked into an online performance live streamed from Shanghai in partnership with the Chronus Art Centre. Watch an interview with MetaObjects' Artistic Director, Ashley Wong discuss some of the challenges of presenting art online. The performance was supported by The Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), Arts Centre Melbourne, Asia TOPA, The Exhibitionist, curated by Mat Spisbah with technical development by MetaObjects. This performance is an evolution of Lu Yang’s live motion capture performances with new multi-limbed and headed characters, backgrounds and effects.

For the performance, a dancer (Qin Ran) is equipped with a Noitom motion tracking suit, where the dancers movements are mapped onto 3D avatars displayed on a large LED screen. Two webcams were set up with dynamic camera switching between the feeds and the animated scene. Music by GameFace was mixed by Extreme John who also designed the “hell'' scene. A landing page was developed with a live chat to allow for audience interaction. The performance was followed by a Q&A by the artist.

MetaObject supported the rigging of the models, technical development of in-scene camera movements and triggers and visual effects. Support was provided to promote the online performance internationally resulting in over 530 streams from Australia, Hong Kong, China, Europe, US and around the world. The project was developed remotely with teams across Shanghai, Hong Kong and Melbourne resulting in a high-energy audiovisual performance demonstrating the possibilities for dynamic online artistic experiences.

About the artist

Lu Yang is a Shanghai-based artist who works across a variety of media including video, installation, animation, performance, motion-capture and games. Lu Yang's work explores existential issues about the nature of life through references in Chinese medicine, Buddhism and Japanese manga. Through navigating diverse fields from science, religion, psychology, neuroscience, medicine, games, popular culture and dance music, Lu Yang questions the belief that human control is privileged within the universe. Instead, the artist highlights the biological and material determinants of our condition, reminding us of our transient and fragile existence.

Lu Yang graduated with a BA and MA from the New Media Art department of the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou, where they are currently pursuing a PhD. Lu Yang’s works have been exhibited internationally in group shows, including the Kulturforum (Berlin), UCCA (Beijing), Centre Pompidou (Paris), 56th Venice Biennale 2015 China Pavilion, 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial, Liverpool Biennial 2016, Shanghai Biennale 2012, Montreal International Digital Art Biennial 2016, Musée d’art contemporain of Lyon, Momentum (Berlin), Tampa Museum of Art, The 5th Fukuoka Asian Art Triennale and others. Her work has been featured in solo exhibitions, including at Tokyo Spiral, M Woods Museum (Beijing), MOCA Cleveland, UCCA (Beijing) and others. In 2019, they were selected the BMW Art Journey winner to create a new ambitious motion-capture work. Lu Yang is represented by the gallery Société in Berlin.