CREDIT: Digital Art Weeks @ SIGGRAPH Asia 2013

TEAM: Arthur Clay (CHE), Curator, Monika Rut (PLN), Communication



Photos are available at:


“The Virtuale” stands for Virtual Biennale and is brought to you by Digital Art Weeks International via Siggraph Asia. The Virtuale is an exhibition of Augmented Reality (AR) artworks for public space using new digital tools not only to view the artworks and to interact with them, but also to design the experience of participation itself. The exhibition encompasses artworks using AR and focuses on the use of public space, mobile communication technologies, and explores the types of audiences found in public space, as well as inventing “playful” new strategies to bring the public into the exhibit as “real” visitors being offered a unique experience.  The goal of the Virtualle to use publically engaging art to add a cultural flair to commercial business districts by placing digital creative accents, enliven and mark historical centers and niches around the city, and link hot spots with urban connectivity into a city-wide virtual arts space, inviting the public to explore the borders between the real and the virtual using their mobiles as a looking glass while expanding their notion of what constitutes exhibition space and how art can manifest and enjoyed in public space. – Arthur Clay, Zurich 2013


AR work by Lily & Honglei


Title: The Butterfly Lovers

About: The Augmented Reality installation is derived from Lily & Honglei’s animated short The Butterfly Lovers. Reinterpreting Chinese folk tale Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingta (梁山伯与祝英台) or The Butterfly Lovers, the work develops traditional aesthetics with new media art. The series of paintings depict scenarios from the original story such as “Seeing off for Eighteen Miles” and “Meeting at the Balcony.” With dreamlike dislocation, the work depicts isolated protagonists, metaphorically implying the vulnerability and resistance of Chinese cultural spirit during the process of westernization. Placement: Hong Kong Park


Mad Drummer by Lily & Honglei

Title: Mad Drummer

About: Mi Heng is a reputed scholar in ancient China.  By beating a drum naked in the imperial court and mocking officials in power, he becomes subject of a famous drama, and is praised as the most courageous intellectual throughout Chinese history. This figure repeatedly appears in our work, including animated short film and virtual reality art project. Based on an image sequence extracted from Fourth Cry of the Monkey, the animated virtual sculpture deploying mobile phone augmented reality technology, is performing timelessly at Chinatown of Los Angles as a spiritual symbol of Chinese culture. Placement: Chater Garden


Death of the General

Death of the General

Title: South East Flies the Peacock

About: The work assembles images of some most influential folktales of China, including Southeast Flies the PeacockThe Peony Pavilion, Lady White Snake, Death of GeneralYang Zaixing,and Cowherd and Weaving Maid, featuring tragic romances as well as epic heroes/heroins admired by Chinese people from generation to generation. In contrast to the the spiritual, legendary figures in the foreground, which are designed as ‘virtual sculptures’ through Augmented Reality application on mobile phone, the background is set at a highly commercial area of a metropolitan city – China Town. By comparing virtual and physical, ancient and modern, east and west, we question the longevity of Chinese culture’s spiritual traditions in the process of capitalization. Placement: Hong Kong Park


Lily & Honglei (USA/CHN)

Based in New York and Beijng, Lily & Honglei work as an artist collective. Utilizing traditional painting and animation, as well as new media such as virtual reality and augmented reality, Lily & Honglei create ‘visual fables’ intertwining current social issues with cultural heritages.Lily & Honglei’s works exhibit at numerous international and national venues, including Museum of Art and Design in New York, Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, The Painting Center of New York, Eyebeam Art Technology Center New York, Zero1 Biennial in San Jose CA, New York Artist Residency Studios Foundation Gallery, Shanghai University Gallery in China, FILE-Electronic Language International Festival in Brazil, Queens Museum of Art in New York.