My Echo

2021
Interactive Installation, made in Unity
Download: Win | Mac

Video Demo: 

My Echo is a 3D simulation of an echoing mountain made in Unity, a real-time rendering engine typically used to build video games. One initiates by shouting into their microphone; after a few seconds they would hear a playback of their voice with a reverb effect, similar to an echo--the natural phenomenon caused by the reflection of sound waves. Li attempts to summon a familiar image often associated with echos: being on top of the mountains, surrounded by a vast land of rocks and trees, feeling small and insignificant, one shouts into the void, hoping for a response from the unknown. At that moment, echo exceeds its natural existence as a physical phenomenon, and becomes a symbol for human expression: an exclamation of joy, a cry for resonance, or a moment of sublime in Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog.  This digital simulation was created during the quarantine to express Li’s longing for an escape in times of isolation. When Li heard her own echo in My Echo, she felt a sense of relief, a momentary break from her daily routine. She shouted out random words to a computer screen and giggled at her own voice. Those usually laughable actions become reasonable in this context as they are justified by this program’s rules. She simply followed them. This ability of experiences bounded by rules and interactivity to temporarily change one’s behavior and re-contextualize an environment fascinates Li. By creating such simulations, she wishes to explore the role of interactivity in worlds of make-believe, and their potential to liberate us from social and logical restrictions. Through her work, Li also raises questions about our relationship with technology. What does it mean to create artificial simulacra of something core to nature and physical reality? If they evoke a similar feeling in us, is our reaction to them still authentic?

《回声》是我疫情期间创作的一个互动装置作品,由一个可交互程序,麦克风,与音响组成。我想在作品中尝试用3D游戏引擎来模拟山里的回声;参与者对着屏幕中的山大喊,几秒后程序便会播放麦克风采集的声音,仿佛山返回的回声。做此作品的初衷是因为我本身是一个热爱大自然的人,却因为疫情长期缩在城市窄小的合作房里无法出门,没办法接触到好看的山水和风景。回忆起来,上次在广阔的山间里放肆的大喊,上次又是什么时候呢?如果我自己能自己做一个属于自己的山,并让它回应我的呼喊,我会不会找回小时候那种轻松的感觉?这样的模拟能不能给大家带来暂时的宽慰?