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Björk’s Latest Tour Features Stunning Displays of Virtual Reality and 3D Printing

by • June 29, 2016 • No Comments

3d-printed-mask-bjork-digitalWhilst there are a lot of talented and original singers and musicians out there, quite few approach the kind of visual artistry and theatricality that Icelandic singer Björk brings to her performances. It is no surprise that innovation such as 3D printing and virtual reality, with their creative future, should appeal to her, and her latest project is a excellent example of the new realm of possibilities that tech opens up. Whilst many artists embark on tours when they release new albums, Björk’s tour to promote her latest album, Vulnicura, is completely various than your average arena-hopping tour. Björk Digital is a virtual reality tour that kicked off in Sydney at the beginning of June and can travel around the globe over the course of the upcoming few months.

The tour, that is already at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan) in Tokyo, invites visitors to don a Samsung Gear VR headset and step into Björk’s world through a series of virtual reality videos that take place in starkly attractive Icelandic landscapes – or, in one case, inside Björk’s mouth. The Tokyo exhibit opened with a live performance of Björk on June 28, and in a initially-time-ever event, the performance was in addition live streamed in 360-degree virtual reality.

3d-printed-mask-bjorkVirtual reality is not the just innovation Björk Digital features, yet. The singer is a big fan of 3D printing, and for her performance in Tokyo, she wore a astonishing 3D printed mask turn it intod and customized for her by developer Neri Oxman and the Mediated Matter Group. Oxman, whose 3D printed “wearable skins” have astounded the art world, took a various way for this mask, createing it instead to explore what’s at a lower place the skin.

“I am so amazingly blown away by Neri Oxman’s work and excited to finally work with her,” said Björk. “She is a true pioneer in capturing the biological with 3D printing in such a refined and profound way. It is been a real joy to get to understand her!”

The mask is called “Rottlace,” a variation of the Icelandic word for “skinless.” Oxman and her Mediated Matter cohorts turn it intod it by bringing 3D scans of Björk’s face, that they and so digitally manipulated to turn it into a version of her bone and tissue structure. The outcome, printed via Stratasys‘ multi-material printing innovation, is a mask with the appearance of muscle and bone in icy black and white, sculpted to Björk’s features while retaining flexibility and freedom of movement.


“Inspired by their biological counterpart and invented as ‘muscle textiles’, the mask is a bundled, multi-material structure, providing formal and structural integrity, as well as movement to the face and neck,” said Oxman. “Multi-material 3D printing empowers the production of elaborate combinations of graded properties, distributed over geometrically difficult structures inside a single object. With Rottlace, we turn it intod the mask as a synthetic ‘whole without parts’.”

The mask, that Björk wore during a performance of her song “Quicksand,” was additional enhanced by patterns of light projected onto it. It wasn’t the initially 3D printed apparel to manufacture an appearance during the tour; for the opening in Sydney on June 4, Björk wore the 3D printed Pangolin dress turn it intod by threeASFOUR and debuted earlier this year at New York Fashion Week. The dress was the initially create to demonstrate Stratasys’ Nano Enhanced Elastomeric Technology material, that can be created commercially on the market later this year, and that was in addition utilized in the Rottlace mask, lending it its super-flexible yet sturdy properties.


The Pangolin dress.

“It is an honor to see visionaries such as Björk embrace 3D printing for the expression of her art,” said Naomi Kaempfer, Creative Director of Art and Fashion Design at Stratasys. “This innovation not just provides the freedom to create ideal fitting costumes for the movie and music industries, but in addition the inimitable ability to materialize a one-of-a-kind fantasy to such a exact level of more detail and 3D expression.”

According to Kaempfer, Oxman has been working on a larger mask collection to feature Stratasys’ materials, to debut later this year under the title “The New Ancient.” Discuss additional in the Björk 3D Printed Mask forum over at 3DPB.com.

[Source: Stratasys / Images: Santiago Felipe]