Houseguest Presents "You Are Here" by Portland Immersive Media Group

Portland, Oregon — This May, Houseguest will activate Pioneer Courthouse Square with its fourth Artist in Residence of the 2016-2017 season. Portland Immersive Media Group (P.I.M.G.) will exhibit “You Are Here,” an immersive and interactive virtual reality experience and physical installation May 26-28, 2017. “You Are Here” will be free and open to the public, with viewing accessibility Friday 6pm-10pm, Saturday 11am-10pm, and Sunday 11am-6pm at Pioneer Courthouse Square.

During the weekend, visitors to Pioneer Courthouse Square will be able to interact with Virtual Reality (VR) through multiple experiences. Audiences will be able to traverse the physical and digital world through “Liminal Passage,” experience an idealized digital version of Pioneer Courthouse Square in VR, escape to anywhere in the world through Google Earth VR, and be transported by several experimental performances throughout the weekend. Join in throughout the weekend to hear from VR experts Kent Bye and Amber Case, and attend performances by Golden Retriever. Other acts to be announced soon.

About P.I.M.G.: The awe-striking power of virtual reality is evident to most anyone who tries it: a visceral feeling of being immersed in a fantasy, a full body epiphany one must experience first hand to believe. For the members of PIMG, these technologies represent nascent possibilities igniting our imagination. We see them as precipitating a paradigm shift toward a new era of multi-sensory communication, with uniquely empathic, beatific, and therapeutic potential. Offsetting this promise however are questions of access, accountability, privacy, and human transmutability: who will have means to these technologies? How will individuals be altered or compromised by their use? Will continued reliance on high-priced software and hardware result in asymmetrical communication in the metaverse? It's this sort of criticality which PIMG wishes to bring to public discourse through ardent experimentation, immersive realm-builing, and visceral installations that bridge the virtual and the physical.

About Houseguest: Houseguest is a public art residency program hosted at Pioneer Courthouse Square (PCS), Portland, Oregon’s largest and most accessible plaza. It’s an experiment in site-specificity, collaboration, and participatory public art. In 2016-2017, Houseguest will host four artist residencies to engage the space, the public, and relevant Portland issues through participatory practices. Houseguest is made possible through the generous support of Oregon Community Foundation, The James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation, and Pioneer Courthouse Square, Inc.

About Pioneer Courthouse Square: Pioneer Courthouse Square, Inc. is a non-profit organization whose mission is to manage Downtown’s central public space, Pioneer Courthouse Square, to achieve an active and healthy downtown core.  Hosting more than 300 programmed events each year, through a variety of public and private partnerships, Pioneer Courthouse Square operates within a budget of $2.2M composed of cash and in-kind donations.