The recent video (above) created by the partnership between Fashion designer Diane von Furstenburg and Google using Google’s new Google Glass augmented reality glasses, suggests that this emerging convergence technology has the potential to transform how movies are made. This transformation appears to not just be about the extreme portability and non-intrusive nature of the technology, which are in themselves great advances, but this new wearable camera may very well bring us into the realm of experiencing a much more powerful subjective lens experience…bringing the subjective eye-line closer into alignment. Time will tell…but this tech looks to be full of potential in both the personal and professional movie-making and viewing space.
In addition to the potential shift in the movie making and viewing experience, there is the added dimension here of how having technology closer to our being, both physically and perceptually will effect our consciousness. The convergence of human and technology spaces has been and continues to be a topic of both inspiration and trepidation…are we evolving into a new form…the transhuman….and heading toward a new age marked by a profound techno-human shift that Ray Kurzweil calls the Singularity…or are we creating further distance and disassociation between our selves, each other and the world…for me, I see this movement as an advance like all other advances, filled with both potential blessings and challenges…for now…this looks like fun…
There are two uses of the term “transcinema.” One is used to refer to films about transgender issues and is usually spelled “trans-cinema;” the other usage, spelled “transcinema,” refers to creative works that use cinematic expression as part of a hybrid creative work, usually a combination of live performance and projected cinematic imagery.
The transcinema movement can be traced back to avant-garde art movements in the 60s and had a resurgence back in the late 90s and early part of the 2000s. This later expression appears to be connected to the introduction of digital media technologies and a greater cultural movement of convergence in media platforms. This movement can also be correlated to Integral and transpersonal cultural and creative trends in that it is boundary transcending (transpersonal) and represents a striving toward an integrated multi-dimensional mode of expression (Integral).
During my research into this area I discovered several patterns that appear to be unique to this form of hybrid cinema. It seems that once you start combining live performance and imagery and sound, audiences gets hooked on it and the absence of one or more of these elements must be used with extreme purpose and prejudice.
There is also a natural expectation of a “third and fourth story” beyond the story of the performance and the story on the screen; there is the story of their convergence (the convergence story) and the container for this convergence (the spatial story).
In addition, the audience tends to expect and anticipate a build in convergence between the live performance and the cinematic projections as the piece unfolds; they also tend to anticipate a convergence climax. Of course, the transcinema artist/team, have the choice to fulfill this pattern or consciously play against it, either subtly or overtly.