Binary Space Partition

Visual Studies

Fall 2012

John Szot, instructor

Architects have speculated on the implications of virtual reality since computer aided design was first introduced. Although the fully immersive parallel universe posited by early proponents of cyberspace has not come to be, many trends in today’s consumer technology suggest the metaphysical questions that accompanied these initial ruminations are still relevant. Furthermore, there has been little attempt to probe real-time simulation platforms for creative ideas specific to the mathematics and display parameters behind their operation. Once such system, binary space partitioning, is the foundation for much of the real-time simulation in consumer products. It also has its own quirks and foibles, which suggests it might be a latent art form unto itself.

This course explored the fundamentals of a binary space partitioning system via the Unreal game engine. Our goal was to understand the specific properties of this system as they pertain to environmental simulation, but all the time working under the assumption that it is a unique artistic medium. Through a series of exercises, technical presentations, and critical discussions related to the operation of the Unreal engine, each student developed their own thesis (and environment sim) regarding the practical and creative potential behind this lightweight-yet-effective tool.

Ara Hovsepyan A
Jonathan Internicola B/C/D