building an interactive experience alongside a real world exhibition

Bridgette Ashton

Bridgette is a multidisciplinary artist working in sculpture, ceramics, print and publications; making objects, models, depictions and proposals engaging with histories and narratives, sites and locations.

Interactive digital exhibition

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During the COVID pandemic, Bridgette Ashton was creating a set of over 70 objects and was planning on displaying them in a travelling exhibition around the UK. Knowing that her audience won’t all be able to visit one of the galleries exhibiting the work she wanted to translate the experience into a digital one.

A detail of the sculptures from Bridgette Ashton's digital exhition

Using the tools at hand

Using the LiDAR sensors on the iPhone, the objects were individually scanned and the 3D models were processed. Due to the limitations of the iPhone, the different textures and materials — ceramic, cardboard, varnish, paint, gold, and felt — didn’t come through in the scans. These were painstakingly mapped onto each model by Alexey so that different “skins” could be applied, making them match the real objects more closely.

The homepage from Bridgette Ashton's digital exhibition

Finding the right balance

Knowing that a large part of her audience will be viewing the experience on their mobile devices we needed to be sure that the immersive experience we created would work well and not require too much data usage, saving the users on their bandwidth.

To limit the amount of models being loaded when a user visits the website, still photos were used as the previews. The 3D model was then loaded when a user interacted (clicked or tapped) on the model, giving them the opportunity to interact with it, without having all 70+ models load at once.

A detail of a sculpture from Bridgette Ashton's digital exhition
Alexey and Paul were great to work with, and were super patient explaining anything that I was unsure of and making changes and tweaks when I asked. They consistently came up with solutions that looked and behaved exactly the way I wanted. I would definitely work with them again.
Bridgette Ashton
Artist of Artificialia