Close isn’t Home

Grace, Fiber, 2020
Samantha Vassor, Interdisciplinary Sculpture, 2020

Grace Kwon and Samantha Vassor are both first-generation Americans. Drawing from their family’s backgrounds of Korea, Haiti, and the Philippines, they utilize the internet platform to create empathetic, digital communities. As artists, they consider diasporic consciousness as a means of connecting their sense of difference and the multiplicity of cultural belonging.


Project Overview

Close isn’t Home explores the materials, traditions, and personal items that influence cultural identities and memories.  Kwon and Vassor created a digital art platform to dissect cross-culturalism, generational heritage, and identity. The website depicts transcendental environments, embodying digital intangibility in relation to physical space and nostalgia. The contradictory “in-between”, digital representations of physical spaces reflect the displacement and “in-between” multiplicities of being “hyphen-American”. The artists emphasize upon the digital empathy and community by inviting others to a responsive forum. They hope to create global conversations through connecting diasporas on the platform.



Process

Close Isn’t Home is comprised of two parts: an interactive online experience and a collaborative peer conversation. We 3D modeled, textured, and animated culturally significant objects with Rhino and Autodesk Maya. The models were then compiled into Unity 3D scenes. With C# coding, we created first person POV interactive elements within the scene to embody empathy with personal narratives. Because of the importance of user accessibility, we embedded the Unity scenes online using HTML. In the collaborative part of project, we organized and curated digital threads of conversation over email and Google Drive.



Presentation


Learn More

Grace Kwon:

  • @gracekwonstudio
  • Website: graceyoungkwon.com
  • Email: gkwon@mica.edu // gracekwon98@gmail.com

Samantha Vassor:

  • @svassor
  • Website: samanthavassor.com
  • Email: svassor@gmail.com

Please keep an eye out for our website Close isn’t Home! Coming soon!!!

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