Text by CLOT Magazine
Digital collections, augmented reality showrooms, computer-generated influencers such as the omnipresent Lil Miquela, virtual avatars and digital collections designed for these virtual avatars… the fashion world is going deep into digital and constructing these hybrid-realities, the merging of real and virtual worlds, to produce new environments and experiences where physical and digital objects co-exist and interact in real-time.
For Alicia Robinson, founder of AGR, a London-based knitwear brand, this is going to really take the fashion industry by storm and into a new era – well it already is– she says. The British designer has teamed up with digital creative studio SENSERGY for PlayStation’s first season of Playable. Inspired by The Sims —the series of life simulation video games— Robinson approached Sensergy to create avatar versions of her friends, wearing her capsule Knitwear Collection. The main challenges were ensuring the characters resembled her friends to the best we could with the time given, this was an extremely difficult task requiring detailed attention from our 3D Sculptors.
SENSERGY innovative’s work offers a new dimension to design. Working mainly digitally in a way that the digital [world] is integrated into the physical realm, SENSERGY’s universe lies at the heart of today’s trend “hybrid-reality”, SENSERGY merge real and virtual worlds to produce new environments and experiences where physical and digital objects co-exist and interact in real-time and create 3D Animations/Motion Graphics, to Face Filters, Virtual Reality, and Avatar Design.
We believe new digital materialism is heading towards a post-digital means of communication, where the two realms become one rather than separate. Our practice is definitely heading towards this direction too. For example, our recent work for AGR, we created Digital Avatars displayed on physical billboards around London, founder Clodie Worboys tells CLOT Magazine.
Following this core idea, SENSERGY’S debut exhibition, Physicalising the Digital explores artists pushing the boundaries of both the physical and digital world. For them, the intellectual process behind this first exhibition was to investigate 3D artists in alternative mediums and dimensions. We were interested solely in ‘Hybrid-reality’, so we wanted to demonstrate this in an explicit way. The project organically spiraled into us basing the exhibit on a physical gallery, where we transformed it digitally. Then we transformed the artists’ digital work, physically, but in digital form. It was an exciting project with an Immersive 3D Exhibition Walkthrough as the end result.
Back to the collaboration with AGR, Robinson chose SENSERGY for this collaboration after seeing some of their previous work and really loved their aesthetic: The animator they use, Teresa Fogolari, is also insane and this drew me to them even more. She’s shot to the top from her recent face filter on Instagram. Overall working with them was a great process, and I’ve learned so much about the digital world and it blows my mind. Creating animations has a lot of processes and many layers that have to be done in a specific order, it’s super interesting and was fascinated throughout this project.
The designer goes on by saying that since the release of this project, she’s seen many similar things in the same direction: It’s definitely going to be a new hype as its a whole new world with so many ways to push it in. The reason why I loved our take on it, though, it was because it was very personal to the brand and characters in it. From their tattoos to personal characteristics it makes it even more special and funny to the people in the industry that know those individuals and me.
If you think in terms of sustainability, and the fact that fashion is one of the most polluting industries, maybe all these digital fashion new hybrid realities start making sense.