Virtual Reality and the Optical Explosion of the Senses

Virtual Reality and the Optical Explosion of the Senses

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Date and time

Wednesday 25 march 2020 1pm - 2pm


Professor Angela Ndalianis (@batndal)
Swinburne University of Technology

Professor Angela Ndalianis will be presenting on how Virtual Reality experiences introduce new forms of perception and embodiment that transform what Jonathan Crary called the “observer” (1990). While relying on stereoscopic vision, Virtual Reality engagement demands “kinesthetic perception”. To quote Terry Castle (1995), who writes about phantasmagoria of the 19th Century, Virtual Reality apps like Tilt Brush and videogames like REZ Infinite and Resident Evil 7 trigger an “optical explosion of the senses” that ignites the entire body and, in the process, activates a dialogue between two bodies – the real and the virtual.

This seminar is part of the Digital Studio’s 2020 Seminar Series – Seeing Double: The Multiple Worlds of Virtual Reality which is presented in partnership with the Enlightenment, Romanticism Contemporary Culture research unit.

Professor Angela Ndalianis


Angela Ndalianis is a Research Professor of Media and Entertainment, and Director of the Centre for Transformative Media Technologies at Swinburne University of Technology. Her research focuses on entertainment media technologies, their histories and how they mediate our experience of the world: how they impact on embodiment, the senses and perception. Her publications include Neo-Baroque Aesthetics and Contemporary Entertainment (2004), Science Fiction Experiences (2010), The Horror Sensorium: Media and the Senses (2012); and the edited books - The Contemporary Comic Book Superhero (2009); Neo-baroques: From Latin America to the Hollywood Blockbuster (co-edited, 2016); Fans and Videogames: Histories, Fandom, Archives (co-edited, 2017), and The Superhero Symbol (co-edited, 2019).