School of machines, making & make–believe

How can we take agency over the seen and unseen landscapes that surround us through augmented-, virtual-, and mixed reality?

  • / 6. May - 31. May 2019

  • / four weeks, full-time in Galway, Ireland

  • / Up to 18 participants accepted

  • / Based in National University of Ireland (NUI) Galway


Future Landscapes is intensive four-week program created in collaboration with the Moore Institute at NUI Galway and Galway 2020.

Compelling us all is an interest in creatively exploring vast landscapes in the physical world and of the mind while gaining an understanding of the potentials of augmented-, virtual-, and mixed reality through a myriad of critical, conceptual, and hands-on approaches.

Using technology to imagine unknown realities can inspire new ways of looking at the world. In designing new forms of interactive and tactile experiences, artistic creation and storytelling, what could we add or augment to our surroundings to develop new narratives about landscapes, be them physical, social, or mental, that permeate our lives? What forms of play and togetherness might we be able to create and sustain? Could thoughtful discourse on landscapes and realities empower us to making impactful change?

Course Description

Mixed Reality (MR) refers to a suit of technologies that anchors virtual objects in a space, allowing for the possibility of "real" interaction with those objects. With Augmented Reality (AR), in addition to superimposing images and 3D models over the camera feed, these toolkits offer the opportunity to map physical spaces, understand ambient lighting and track the position of a phone in space. Pokemon Go used these techniques to capture the public interest and brought AR into the mainstream, but it begs the question, what else can we do with this technology? In this class, we'll explore the spectrum of what these tools have to offer.

These techniques are just a starting point for what may be possible. There is much experimentation to be done by utilising the other capabilities of handheld devices to stream live data, communicate with others, and incorporate information from built in sensors.

Although various types of augmented and virtual reality systems have existed for some time, recent advances in mobile technology platforms provide us more powerful ways of creating and sharing these experiences with a wider audience. So as the technology is advancing, what happens when we bring conceptual ideas and criticality to the fore?

The primary tool of this program will be Unity 3D. We will work with the ARKit and Vuforia libraries. As we engage the potential of these new tools, we will also take a critical perspective discussing the shortcomings and challenges of future technologies.


  • Artist / Student (Full Time)*

  • Women and persons from LGBTQ+ and other under-represented communities in the tech field highly encouraged to apply!

    *Includes in-class materials, use of space, and professional mentorship

    Please Note: Bursaries of any kind are no longer available.

In this course, you will learn

- Critical and conceptual development of projects
- Creative development with Unity3D
- Scripting in Unity3D to create interactivity
- Introduction to ARKit (iOS) and Vuforia
- Attaching virtual objects to real image markers
- Creating both AR and VR experiences
- Recording and placing sounds inside a virtual AR space
- Designing an AR space that can be shared and explored with multiple people at the same time
- Building mixed reality experiences
- An amazing network and community of like-minded creative beings and potential future collaborators
- **No previous experience necessary**

Course Outline

Week 1: Introductions, concepts, narratives, play, and critical discourse.

Week 2: Tools and techniques for creating interactive experiences in Unity

Week 3: Advanced tools and techniques for creating interactive experiences in Unity. Adding physicality into our work through props and found artifacts.

Week 4:Preparing talks, presentations, and Mixed Reality experiences for final showcase open to the public.

Who is this program for?

This workshop is geared toward anyone involved in creative projects (architects, designers, makers, artists, musicians, performers etc.) and the arts and humanities research communities that wish to begin incorporating mixed reality experiences into their work or practice. This course approaches mixed reality from an introductory level. A basic knowledge of programming (in any language/platform) is encouraged *but not required*.

Prospekt, A VR-essay by Geraldine Juárez.

Landscapes, Network located videos, 2016 - ongoing, Evan Roth.

Storm, A VR Experience by Anrick Bregman.

Vonderland, a mixed reality experience, creative technlogist, Meredith Thomas.

In collaboration with



  • Geraldine Juárez /

    Geraldine Juárez is a mexican and swedish artist using time-based media, sculpture and performance to make works that consider the material, technological, political and economic histories that give shape to dominant narratives in contemporary media culture.

    Recent exhibitions include Monoskop Exhibition Library, Seoul Media City Biennale; 100 Years of Copyright, Haus der Kulturen der Welt; For the Record, ifa galerie Berlin; University of Disaster, Bosnia Herzegovina Pavilion, 57th Venice Biennale; and Situations/Placeholder, Fotomuseum Winterthur. Performance work include Prospekt at the Gothenburg Botanical Garden; Colour Set at Skogen and Hello Bitcoin at Transmediale.

    She has published essays in Continent, Scapegoat: Journal for Architecture, Landscape and Political Economy, The Radiated Book edited by Constant and in the Intercalations series of K.Verlag. Her artist book Flux until sunrise was published by Rojal in 2018.

    Geraldine holds an MFA in Fine Art from Valand Academy and studied ceramics in HDK- Academy of Design and Crafts in Gothenburg, Sweden where she lives and works.

  • Anrick Bregman

    Anrick is a New Realities Director, exploring immersive storytelling through VR, AR, film, games, and beyond. His work is research focused, and lies at the intersection of narrative and experiential technology.

    He writes and directs interactive stories, whether for unique pieces or in collaboration with brands and organizations. His work has been recognised by the FWA, by the Webbys, the One Show Awards, Cannes Lions, SXSW, New Media Film Festival and at the D&AD, among others.

    Anrick is passionate about human-centered storytelling, and uses intensive research-centric process such as world-building and iterative prototyping to create complex and multilayered projects that have a unique voice and real-world impact.

  • Meredith Thomas

    Meredith is an artist and creative technologist based in Berlin. He studied biomedical engineering and science communication at Imperial College London. After moving to Berlin he became interested in creative uses of technology. His work now focuses on intersections between artistic tradition and practice and new technology.

  • Evan Roth

    Based in Berlin, Evan Roth's practice visualizes and archives typically unseen aspects of rapidly changing communication technologies. Through a range of media from sculpture to websites, the work addresses the personal and cultural effects surrounding these changes and the role of individual agency within the media landscape.

    Recent exhibitions include the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and the Strasbourg Biennale. Roth is the co-founder of the Graffiti Research Lab and the Free Art & Technology Lab (F.A.T. Lab) and his work is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art NYC.

  • Sarah

    Sarah Buser is born in Switzerland. After studying German literature and philosophy she completed a Master's degree in Theater at the Zurich University of the Arts. She currently works as a director and writes software for various projects at the intersection of participative theatre, philosophy and art education that deal with the nature of our reality.

    She examines, among other things, augmented reality and location-based software as theatrical means. She teaches at art academies and gives workshops on the artistic and theatrical use of new technologies and lives in Basel and Berlin.

  • Dr. Anne Karhio

    Dr. Anne Karhio is a researcher in digital literature, culture and contemporary poetry. She is a graduate of the University of Helsinki and National University of Ireland in Galway, and has studied and worked in a number of institutions in Finland, Ireland, Norway and France. She is currently a researcher in the Irish Research Council –funded project “Republic of Conscience: Human Rights and Modern Irish Poetry” at the Moore Institute, NUI Galway, and has also contributed to research in the European Research Council -funded “Machine Vision” project in Digital Culture, University of Bergen, Norway.

    She is the author of Slight Return: Paul Muldoon’s Poetics of Space (Peter Lang, 2016), and co-editor of Crisis and Contemporary Poetry (Palgrave MacMillan, 2011). She has published widely on contemporary Irish poetry, digital literature and art, and the aesthetics of space, place and landscape. Her most recent research project, “Virtual Landscapes: New Media Technologies and the Poetics of Place in Recent Irish Poetry” was co-funded by the Irish Research Council and the European Commission via Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions.

  • Leon

    Leon Butler has worked as a visual narrative designer, filmmaker, and educator for over ten years receiving plaudits along the way from The Type Directors Club, at the Future Makers awards, Digital Media awards, Young Directors awards and the Irish Design Awards 2019.

    Leon’s has completed residencies in the School of Visual Art New York, and at 72andSunny in Los Angeles. He was appointed as a Research Fellow at the National University of Ireland Galway in 2016 – 17 and in 2017 as Designer in Residence in Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. Leon is currently working as a Lecturer at Technological University Dublin as a as well as continuing to grow his own practice at Bold Visual Narrative.