“Cursed Avatars” is a VR immersive environment, a playground of kinesthetic experience, that investigates notions of non-binary embodiment through 5 different avatars. These avatars (Jake, Janeson, Orlando, Sexy Guy and Staicee) embody the user in alternate dataspaces, shaped by popular culture references and queer fiction. They refuse to succumb to dichotomies and offer ways to undermine cis-heteronormative structures by oscillating between virtual and the actual.
All the 3D models in the artwork have been generated either by using Autodesk Character Generator, modeled using Maya (student license), or purchased from Unity Asset Store/sketchfab.com. Music, text and concept were all developed by the artist.
The following work was submitted as a final year project in connection with the artist’s BA thesis titled “Cursed avatars: Glitched embodiments of actual/virtual queer body”. It was completed in the last semester of the 4-year program of Interactive Media and Animation at University of Nicosia under the supervision of Dr. Chris Christou.
Anastasia Dolitsay (they/them) is a multidisciplinary digital artist and designer from Cyprus, who is interested in New Media theory, Queer studies and philosophy. Primarily working with sound, 3D and VR, they combine different media to create immersive experiences that mediate the line between human and the machine, while addressing the binary notion of gender and sexuality. Beside their audio-visual work, they continue their exploration of queer embodiment in performance and writing, investigating shapeshifting both on-and offline through poetry and drag.