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Deniz Ural | Thesis Project | 2018 - 2019

IMAGINE THIS...

 

When you enter a space, the space knows you are there. The space knows who you are. 

 

This space has the power to transform your life by transforming itself according to you.

 

If we can understand the power of this relationship, we can enjoy...

 

Every single moment of our lives.

 

This installation was exhibited at OCAD University between May 1- 5, 2019

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Low HRV
(Excitement - Stress)

High HRV
(Mindfulness - Calm)

Over the five days of the exhibition a total of

323

people have tried this experience. 

Here are some interesting data points; 

2 People have cried and hugged me 

when they came out telling me how

powerful this experience was for them.

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2 People were frustrated because

they were fixated on making

the room blue.

Out of 323 only 4 people were able 

to keep the room blue the whole time.

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Some people stayed more than 10 minutes and there was a long line of people waiting, so I had to cut down the music at 4 minutes to direct the exit. 

Men were able to keep the room blue

longer than women. Women have experienced more variety of colours

than men.

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ALL the 323 people turned the room blue when they were meditating. 

1 Person told me that this experience made her realize that she could not focus on her experience because she was judging her experience and her "inability" to make the room blue, she thanked me and told me that meditation really helper her.  

 

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WE ARE ALL ONE

LOCATION

While doing research to find a location, I realized that nothing fit my vision. In my heart, I knew that it was really important to stay true to my vision and follow what feels right. I made the decision to build a custom location which was a risk because I have never built anything this big. 

TECHNOLOGY

I have collaborated with a computer scientist and a software engineer, Steve Karpik for the technical components of Sensorium1

TECHNICAL PROCESS

EEG DATA

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In the beginning of the project, I wanted to collect EEG data as input and planned to collaborate with MUSE2. I would like to give thanks to Hesam Masoumi and MUSE2 for supporting projects like these. 

After a period of research and trial, we decided we were limited by the time we had to dig into the complex data stream that is brainwaves. 

HEART RATE DATA

Instead, we decided to look into heartbeat data as for our input. After having software compatibility issues with MUSE2, we started to consider other products for the collection of biofeedback. ​

HEART RATE VARIABILITY DATA

After further research, we came across another data input: heart rate variability. Heart rate variability data is different from the basic heart rate. This data measures the time variance between heartbeats and indicates more about the physiology of a person and how much their breathing is in tune with their bodies. 

 

While still looking into other products, we found Corsense. This device is compatible, easy to use and collects heart rate variability. Perfect.  

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I am excited to see what other kinds of biofeedback data I can use for future Sensoriums. In the future, I am excited to come back to brainwaves and transform spaces simply with our brain activity. Imagine, your thoughts are manifested into visual experience. 

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There is magic in everyday life; I call these moments mini performances. They are experiences that appear and disappear in a second like unique and fleeting light reflections. These moments create a trail of wonderment and trigger curiosity in us. 

 

Imagine you are on a rooftop, all of a sudden you see a bubble floating, a single bubble. That is a mini performance. Or when you are walking outside with your headphones on, listening to a piano song, and as the last note hits, it slowly starts raining. 

 

The world is filled with mini performances and life is a playground. 

 

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I once saw a baby observing his hand as if this was the very moment he realized it was his own. He looked it over and over with astonishment, pupils dilating. I thought to myself, at what point in our lives do we lose the sense of discovery and amazement?   

 

Sentient and transformative space experiences have the power to remind us to look at ourselves and our surroundings with this same sentiment. They allow us to discover ourselves in a new light, within spaces that become an extension of us, reflecting our beings, thoughts and feelings. 

 

This philosophy is an opportunity for designers to create new behaviors and interactions for both spaces and humans.

 

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WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?

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NOTHING.

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A future of values

The world is suffering from a loss of values. Social media and consumerism have changed our culture and our values. We are accustomed to replace everything we own very quickly, sometimes even our relationships. Instead of wanting more and more, we should be grateful for what we have at this exact moment and learn to be content with it. 

 

The less meaningful relationships we have, the less connected we feel. When we disassociate, our sense of time and space are separate from everyone. The more we lack connection, interaction, discovery and purpose, the more problems like loneliness and depression will keep being on the rise. 

 

Some of us believe that there is something inherently wrong with us, but there is nothing wrong. I want to create spaces where everyone can freely and fully vibrate in the frequency of their own beings. 

 

I envision an inclusive future full of connection, full of love and kindness, full of magical moments, full of healing through dance, music and lights. I am ready to work hard with my endless passion to transform people’s lives through transformative space experiences. 

 

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The value of designing experiences will be more important than ever in the future. 

 

As automation is taking over, we have more time to understand what life is about. This is living in the moment and sharing. 

 

The future of experience is innovative, sentient and transformative space experiences that allow humanity to reach collective elevation. 

 

Holistic awareness is an integral part of experience. We are meant to live in our senses, not in our heads. Once we are present in our bodies, our minds and our spirits, we are ready to experience something fully. 

 

Self-consciousness is one of the things that pulls us out of a moment. By practicing mindfulness, we can learn to allow ourselves to be seen and to be vulnerable without letting our fears guide our lives. 

 

Through teaching mindfulness as a way of experiencing, people’s sensory awareness is maximized to absorb the full effects of a moment. 

 

MINDFULNESS

RESEARCH

Through the different meanings of words, we can find sparks of inspiration and paths of connection. 

 

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No matter where we come from, no matter what our realities are, we all need love, the sense of belonging, community, connection and purpose to have a functioning, healthy and balanced life. 

 

Sentient and transformative space experiences, like love and kindness, will play a big role in healing our world.  

 

Performance is a universal need and it is interrelated with every aspect of life. Our natural calling for rituals, dance and music remains consistent throughout history, regardless of where we are in the world. 

 

Sensory experience is what keeps us connected with our surroundings, ourselves and others. We are sentient beings and we need to live within systems that recognize that.  

 

Sentient and transformative space experiences have the power to unite and connect people. This will be the beginning of healing our world, one step at a time. 

 

OPPORTUNITY MAP

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Everything is connected. 

 

This map is a visualization of opportunities. This map could be reorganized and reused over and over again in order to achieve a different outcome. 

 

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WE DO NOT EXIST WITHOUT SPACES AND SPACES DO NOT EXIST WITHOUT US

Imagine that we live in a world where people feel deeply connected to themselves and to their surroundings. Imagine a future where instead of taking medications, we are prescribed experiences. Imagine that we can prevent and treat diseases with experiences. 

 

Our understanding of health must change on a fundamental level by reaching a more holistic approach. Our spiritual, mental and physical states are all interrelated. This understanding is the beginning of collective healing, it is a chain reaction in the process of healing our world.

 

STAKEHOLDERS

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A BIG HUG

Imagine that you receive the biggest hug you could ever receive from a space. Sentient and transformative space experiences will allow people to share their own worlds without them explaining it. This philosophy is incredibly powerful because it gives people the sense that they are making a difference and that their existence is meaningful and impactful. 

 

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 My starting point, Sensorium1, is only one of the millions of possibilities of how this philosophy could be portrayed. In the future, this philosophy will be designed specifically for diagnosed diseases, for educative purposes, for entertainment purposes and for any other desired target and problem. New trends and technologies will be integrated into this system.  

 

This philosophy is not limited to physical

space, nor a single outcome. 

 

 

I have added a “distancing phase” to the 5 steps of experience. This phase distances the audience from their daily lives and ensures that when they enter, they can enter fully present physically and mentally. A distancing phase can have many forms ranging from a meditation session, to a quiet staircase, to a long tunnel or hallway. In the case of Sensorium1, the distancing phase is a quick mindfulness practice. 

 

The stronger the responses of the spaces are according to their audiences, the stronger the relationship will be; which will remain the audience present in that moment. 

 

DISTANCING

SCENARIO AND MAPS

FUTURE SCENARIOS

I have created this experience formula to be integrated into many different systems. By plugging in information depending on location, story, desired target, goals and stakeholders; many different outcomes will be achieved.  

 

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FUTURE SCENARIO MAPS

BRANDING & BUSINESS

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BUSINESS MODEL

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BRAND PYRAMID

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PERCEPTUAL MAPS

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Click here to see the online book

This book was printed as a hardcover book for the exhibition. 

 

REFLECTIONS

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In these past four years, I have been through many major physical, mental and spiritual challenges, all the while being far away from my home and my family. All of these experiences made me feel isolated and at times very disconnected. Over time, I rediscovered my sense of self, what is meaningful for me and what I want my life to be. This project is everything that I want to attract in my life: connectedness, magic, performance, inspiration, healing, philosophy and most importantly living in the moment. 

 

I could not imagine any other way to honor these challenges and learnings than with this project. It is a reflection of my true nature. I have been told that my multi-disciplinary nature is confusing and lacking in direction. I have doubted how I would combine all of my multi-disciplinary skills, passions and knowledge into a whole package and show it to the world. This work is me showing it to the world. This journey is the beginning of putting my purpose in life to action. 

 

I feel such an incredible sense of happiness and pride. This is a reminder to myself to always believe in myself, to remember my strength, my resilience and my courage. 

 

One of the most important things that I have learned during this period of my life is that I am my own home. I can simply look within, whenever I feel lost or hurt, and I will have the answer. I will always follow my heart and take strategic risks. 

 

I am 21 now, and I promise to myself that I will always follow my heart, dream big, stay where I can grow. I will always strive to create magic and practice mindfulness and kindness until the end of my life.   

 

I am ready to be fire.