Juxtapose: An Exploration of the Technical and Aesthetic Potential of Print-based Augmented Reality Design
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This practice-led research project examines how the technological and aesthetic components of augmented reality (AR) serve to extend, enhance and disrupt print-based design. The outcome of the project is a conceptual hybrid AR/print publication that demonstrates the aesthetics and models of AR creation in an augmented space; a book that represents the merging of virtual and physical, in terms of technology and aesthetics. Juxtapose explores tensions between the digital and the analogue and invites the reader to physically and virtually interact with the artefact. Handmade and digital elements are juxtaposed to enhance, extend and reveal layers of information and representation. The artefact is a site of experimentation that explores the possibilities of interaction resulting from the use of multiple markers to create a playful augmented space. This project also investigates the concept of an augmented space; a mixed reality (MR) world (a hybrid reality that combines physical and digital objects in a real-time interactive space). Juxtapose engages with Matsuda’s contemporary vision of an augmented space (2016), a term proposed by Manovich (2002) that draws on Baudrillard’s concept of hyperreality based on simulacra and simulation (1981). Matsuda proposes that Manovich’s augmented space is also a setting where individuals are free to create, customise and contribute to both shared and personal augmented space. The final artefact uses a collection of zines (handmade magazines) that explores the hyper- consumerist aesthetic of the Vaporwave design movement as a form of visual critique, whilst proposing a networked model of content creation in augmented space. Taking into consideration current handmade movements such as Zine culture, this project also considers the potential of AR as a participatory creative space.