Created for an abandoned floor of a tower block at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, this re-imagining of the Faust legend fused real and virtual space

'Garage' VR was used in the performance , including these data gloves.


This site specific work was commissioned for the International Symposium of Electronic Arts (ISEA) in Chicago. The Faust Space was about magic, aliens and virtual worlds and was presented by two performers and digital technology including a live link up to a parallel performance in an online virtual world. Created in 1997 this work pioneered the use of virtual space within theatre. Followers of the project had the opportunity to visit the world of the Faust Space in an online location and interact with the characters for some weeks before the work’s premiere in the US.

During the ISEA symposium the audience got access to 9th floor of the Art Institute via a goods lift. The space, which was normally used for storing furniture , became the magical hub where the legend of Dr Faustus, the man who sells his soul to the Devil in return for supernatural powers, was reimagined for a digital age. The Faust Space created an environment where alchemy and lo-tech trickery fused and clashed with state of the art technology in a stupidly beautiful and sensual game. The performers communicated with both the real and an online audience as the ancient story unfolded simultaneously in real and virtual space. The work was performed by Peter Ireland and Liz Swift with music by Simon Turner.

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