Credit: Emergence Delft

The Emergence team about their project: ‘With our first main project, we seek to develop “Real” Augmented Reality technology. For this we are experimenting with creating a projector that has an Infrared (IR) light source.’

Unseen Echoes

On the internet, we are increasingly losing sight of what is real and what is not. Like the people we come across on social media, sometimes they are merely virtual. In the wrong hands, these so-called “social bots” can be used to manipulate our personal views by amplifying extremes and promoting polarization. 

In Emergence’s work, social bots are embodied and projected in invisible infrared among the existing crowd of the Delft station. The visible/invisible are related to the real/virtual. From an online perspective, or through screens in the installation, there is no difference between these digital entities and ourselves. Physically we can’t see them, only notice their echoes. 

How often do you critically think about the information you consume and the way you form opinions on social media? What is the role of technology in this discussion? 

Emergence reflects on new technologies becoming evermore complex and intangible. We call for transparent technologies, which we see as tools inseparably tied to humankind, and recognize a shared responsibility between engineers that develop them and everyone that uses them.  

In our evermore digital society, what is invisible that should be seen?

Stationshal Delft

About Emergence Delft

Emergence Delft is, since September 2023, a Dream Team of the TU Delft. The student team combines the qualities of TU Delft students with those of nearby art academies. Together they develop new technologies which they use to build art installations, encouraging people to reflect on our evermore digital society.

“As Emergence, art and tech students collaborate on the research and development of new artistic media using the expertise of both the TU Delft and nearby art schools. Our artworks aim to facilitate an understanding of complex technology that has been "blackboxed", where its intricate inner workings and large scale are difficult to comprehend and cause us to lose touch with it.”

In our first main project, we seek to develop “Real” Augmented Reality technology. For which we are already experimenting with creating a projector that has an Infrared (IR) light source. An IR projector has never been made before, but we will be able to utilize existing solutions to develop it. The resulting projection exists physically (”Real”), but to these human eyes it is invisible. Using a handheld device with an IR-sensitive camera the visitor is able to explore the hidden projections (Augmented Reality). In our development phase we will further iterate on these prototypes and with them we will compose experiences that mediate between the virtual/physical world and visualize hidden layers of technology. Through which we hope to support living in an ever more Digital Society.

Instagram: @emergencedelft

LinkedIn: @emergence-delft


Thanks to

FAST | Funding Ambitious Students TU Delft

TU Delft | University Fund

TU Delft | Dream Hall

Koninklijke Academie van Beeldende Kunsten (KABK) Canon