Or, The Whale

Jos Sances

Graphic artist Jos Sances created an incredibly large-scale drawing of a sperm whale containing vignettes that tell a story of the history of capitalism in America. The original work is 51 feet long and 14 feet high, requiring a large venue capable of housing such a piece.

We worked with Sances to put his artwork into a VR app where anyone can see it no matter where they live, and the viewer can explore the art in ways that are not possible even when viewing it in person.

“It’s great to be able to see the upper regions and zoom in very close. Allows you to be even more swallowed up by the images.”

“Or, The Whale VR” at the Sebastapol Center for the Arts, CA

For example, viewing it in VR allows you to go all the way to the top of the piece, whereas in the exhibit the top is inaccessible at 14 feet off the ground. In the VR you can get within inches of the work to see every detail, in the gallery you’re limited in how close you can get. In a gallery you’re crowded amongst other people, jostling for space to view the work, but in the VR it’s just you and the piece. The VR allows other kinds of interactions, audio, video, and so forth that you don’t get in the gallery.

Students at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) use “Or, The Whale VR” as a way to discuss the history of labor in the United States.