"They come from a reality, which is not real, anymore."
Decompensation is a performative VR piece that attempts to recreate the psychological stages which refugees pass through when moving and settling into a new social/cultural context over the span of many years:
Early Arrival, Destabilization, Exploration, Return to Normal life, and Decompensation.
the failure of an organ (especially the liver or heart) to compensate for the functional overload resulting from disease.
the failure to generate effective psychological coping mechanisms in response to stress, resulting in personality disturbance or disintegration, especially that which causes relapse in schizophrenia.
In this participatory piece, the notion of "Displacement" is communicated through music, performance, and 360-degree video.
The viewer experiences three different presences:
1. Seeing other participants
2. Becoming a participant
3. Immersion in the virtual world of the performer.
An immersive perspective provided by virtual reality is hoped to inspire an empathy for the displaced individual. Therefore, VR stage design aims to function as a type of empathy machine in which the immersive quality enables a sensory experience.
The work displaces the viewer in order to contemplate the displacement of the refugee. The immersive experience provided by virtual reality can increase empathy, through sensory experience. By activating the body and the senses, virtual reality brings new topologies of emotion, pleasure, and passion to the landscape of interaction.
5-channel 360° video-Performance
March 19th- April 10th
The Miller Gallery at Carnegie Mellon University
Choreographer and Performer: Laura Stokes
Composer and sound designer: Soosan Lolavar
Director and media Designer: Nima Dehghani
“Decompensation” , FIVARS VR Film Festival, Toronto, Canada
“Decompensation” , 3Rivers Art Festival, Pittsburgh, USA
“Decompensation” , The Miller gallery, Pittsburgh, USA
Article in Huffington Post discussing “Decompensation”
Interview with Nima Dehghani in TheTartan Way discussing his work: “Decompensation”
Article in Fivars discussing “Decompensation”