Locus Amoenus (Place of Delight) is an ambient audio-visual installation in a public hospital lounge that was conceived to foster calm, focus, and place making for the general public. The large screen component depicts a window-like view of a naturalistic landscape that is sometimes roving, sometimes resting, and perpetually animated. This real-time audio-visual artwork represents the local weather through wind, rain, cloud cover and visibility (driven by actual real-time data) and the natural passage of diurnal light from a virtual sun that is synchronised to the geolocation of the hospital site.
The work is installed in a lounge “sanctuary” space, adjacent to a busy café on the ground floor of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre (VCCC)—a purpose built clinical care and research hospital—in Parkville, Victoria. The work is seen and experienced in different ways, but at first glance is highly legible as a view through a window onto a natural scene. The naturalistic surround sound coheres with the image and supports associations with a natural environment. Locus was created with a combination of traditional painterly material approaches and generative and procedural methods that have been assembled within the Unity real-time 3D graphics engine which renders the work as a continuous animated image. The work aims to afford effortless and pleasant aesthetic encounter for those who electively attend to it, and to otherwise support an ambient refuge for those who leave it in the periphery of their attention.
For video documentation of Locus at the VCCC, see: https://vimeo.com/491819073.
The installation was supported by the Public Programs at State Library, Victoria and was presented in partnership with the School of Media and Communication, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.