PureLand: Inside the Mogao Grottoes at Dunhuang Design & Installation

An Immersive Augmented Reality Exhibition by Prof. Sarah Kenderdine and Prof. Jeffrey Shaw

PureLand AR employs iPad screens that visitors use as mobile viewing windows to explore the magnificent Buddhist wall paintings inside Cave 220, a cave dated to early Tang from the Mogao Grottoes at Dunhuang in Gansu province, China. It is a pioneering augmented reality installation whereby the paintings and sculptures of the caves are rendered virtually within the architecture of a room which shares same dimensions to those of Cave 220 itself. It creates a space for the conjunction between real and virtual formations that gives transacted aesthetic expression to Dunhuang’s Buddhist art treasury of mural paintings and sculptures. The exhibition was running in the Gallery at Sunway University, for nearly 2 months (Sep-Oct 2016). See “PureLand Exhibition“.

Design & Installation

Below show the initial 3D model and installation process of the PureLand. There is nothing extraordinary about the 3D visualization of PureLand except eliminating unnecessary communication and preventing the details to be lost in translation (between designers and contractors). PureLand exhibition was a collaboration with Professor Sarah Kanderdine (University of New South Wales) and Professor Jeffrey Shaw (City University of Hong Kong), and Dunhuang Academy, China.