I recently heard about Mat Collishaw's Thresholds touring exhibition and I was very curious about it because it involves the use of virtual reality (VR) to recreate one of the world’s first major photography exhibitions, which took place here in Birmingham in 1839. As I had never experienced VR technology first hand, I thought visiting the exhibition would be a great opportunity to try it, and also to learn about William Henry Fox Talbot's photography exhibition.
So yesterday I went to the Waterhall gallery at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery where this fantastic exhibition is taking place until next Sunday (August 6th, 2017).
Now, I do not want to give to much away as I feel this immersive experience is best enjoyed without knowing much what is there beforehand, but I can tell you that it is a great sensory experience.
You get to see, hear and feel the things from the past that you are experiencing visually through your VR kit and when your time is up it will leave you wanting to experience it all again.
In the images below you can see the equipment you wear during the experience (L) and the a live representation of the room you visit which includes ghostly avatars of the people who are inside Fox Talbot's exhibition with VR kits in use (R).
What is also great about Thresholds is that it gives you a unique opportunity to view Fox Talbot's images which are no longer possible to see anywhere else because they have either almost completely faded or because they are now stored in vault's to be protected from light.
Remember you have until Sunday to visit. Once it ends in Birmingham the exhibition will be moving on to Lacock Abbey where it will be exhibited in September.
I hope these images I captured will give you an idea of what a great use of technology this exhibition is. Why not try it for yourself and if you enjoy it as much as I did spread the word!
You can find out more about the exhibition: here. Advanced booking is recommended.
© Hanny Foxhall Photography