Akira art show continues in absence of virus-hit Olympics

An interactive online exhibition transports you to 2020 NEO-Tokyo.

Today sees the launch of an interactive online exhibition that transports the visitor to an industrial complex set in 2020 NEO-Tokyo, enabling the user to browse a 3D art exhibition dedicated to the iconic 1988 Japanese post-apocalyptic cyberpunk film Akira.

There are
14 artworks on display by artists from Singapore, Japan and Philippines. The digital works are complemented by a central sculpture by Japanese artist Humanoise. Viewers are able to zoom in to each artwork, read about the artist statement, and purchase the piece on the spot.

Try it out here.

A specially designed-soundscape creates an atmosphere to transport the viewer, whilst the industrial space retains the physicality and intimacy of an exhibition.

The 3D environment of the show was created by METAMO Industries with Unreal Engine. The space's look and feel was built in real-time and the panoramic images were then uploaded to the Theasys.io platform where the virtual tour was designed. 

Says curator Steve Lawler; “The Akira show was initially created to be a physical exhibition sometime in April, but due to COVID-19, we had to reimagine the experience to suit the online medium, whilst retaining the sense of discovery that comes with wondering around a physical space.

"This small experiment demonstrates the potential of online exhibitions where there are no constraints in space and capacity.

"The potential to add different interconnected virtual experiences that merge editorial content, online events, gaming, video and animation is endless and something we plan to explore in the future.” 

Akira has been making headlines lately because a scene from the beginning of the film, set in 2019 Neo-Tokyo, that notoriously predicts the cancellation of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Another reason for Akira’s relevance 32 years later is because it continues to inspire creatives to this day. Says contributor Jaba One, the Columbian graffiti artist whose work can be seen all over Singapore; “Akira is more than a classic, it is unbeatable perfection from a graphic point of view, a story engraved in my brain. A timeless masterpiece.” 

The exhibition not only showcases some beautiful works that can be purchased with a simple click, but also points to new ways of creating and showcasing work. Artist Supercybertown for example, created his piece in the 3D creation platform Unreal Engine. Art prints will be printed on High Quality fine art paper by Brilliant Prints Singapore to ensure the finest output. 

Visit the virtual exhibition here.

Related: 30 years on, animation classic Akira is still inspiring artists around the world

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