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Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

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The Dome

The Dome
  • On October 2, 2018

When a group of people are engaged in the same experience, a profound feeling that “this is happening to all of us together” can arise. ‘The Dome’ is a spatial light installation for exploring group interactions and shared experience. Participants’ interaction with the space and with others directly generates the light patterns along the dome’s surface.

A 4m geodesic dome forms the structure of the installation, the geometric interconnectedness of the struts mirroring the connectedness of the group of participants within. Facing inwards on the surface of the dome, 33 triangular panels contain LED strip arranged into triangles and pentagons. The location of each of these LEDs is mapped and they can be individually controlled, allowing for animations to be rendered across the dome’s 3D surface. The LEDs are gently diffused with white fabric, which is sewn together from triangle sections billowing into the space, creating a soft and welcoming atmosphere.

Participants interact with The Dome’s surface by picking up a handheld tracker. Designed to be inviting to hold, the reflective half is tracked with infrared light by a Kinect mounted high up in the space.

As the group waves the trackers through the air, they are able to control the geometric lights above the space. They can draw dynamic lines together, which create multi-coloured explosions when they intersect, inviting the participants to collaborate in their interactions. Group phenomena such as connection, collaboration and shared consciousness are explored through interaction with The Dome.


Here are some key references from my theory paper,

  • Botton, A. 2013. Alain de Botton on Art as Therapy. The School of Life. [Video file]. Retrieved on 19th December 2017 from
  • Chalmers, David J. 2006. Strong and weak emergence. In P. Davies & P. Clayton (eds.), The Re-Emergence of Emergence: The Emergentist Hypothesis From Science to Religion. Oxford University Press.
  • Clark, A. & Chalmers, D.. 1998. The Extended Mind. Oxford University Press on behalf of The Analysis Committee.
  • Schmid, H.B. 2014. The feeling of being a group: corporate emotions and collective consciousness. In Collective Emotions. Oxford University Press, pp. Collective Emotions, Chapter 1.
  • Slaby, Jan. 2014. Emotions and the extended mind. In Collective Emotions. Oxford University Press, pp. Collective Emotions, Chapter 1.
  • Zimmerman, E. & Salen, K.. 2003. Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals. The MIT Press.