Augmented reality: The programmable psychedelics of the future

[Originally Published by Superrare July 8th, 2021]

We spend a tremendous amount of time staring, typing and talking into rectangles. We sit in front of rectangles, we stand in front of rectangles and we take conference calls that split our rectangles into smaller rectangles filled with our teammates’ heads staring back at us through their rectangles.

There is clearly a problem here. Humans did not evolve to spend all day hunched over a screen. But it’s a problem for which the metaverse offers a solution. Virtual and augmented reality present the opportunity to flip how we interact with computers. In digitally augmented spaces, the physical world can become our computer. Grasping at virtual objects, pointing at text and drawing diagrams on walls, we’ll bend digital environments to our needs as opposed to our bodies to theirs, and then cover them in art.

Such paradigm shifting environments will take time to emerge and we believe it is the job of artists and technologists to lead the way. Leaning into this role, artist Hackatao minted Hack of a Bear on SuperRare this week, a specially commissioned 3D animated work also on exhibit in the physical world atop Leonardo da Vinci’s, Head of a Bear, at Christie’s King Street in London. Christie’s visitors can download the Aria AR app, hold it in front of Da Vinci’s work and see Hackatao’s work come to life atop the 15th century classic. Works from this project are available on SuperRare here.

Further, this week marks the start of the Un-Realism Exhibition featuring the work of ten artists bridging the gap between digital and physical realms. Minted on SuperRare and viewable at a VR exhibit on, these works dare to imagine our augmented future — opening up possibilities and experimenting with ideas for the exciting road ahead.

Hackatao: Hack of a Bear, Hack of a Bear — The Scientist, Hack of a Bear — The Architect, Hack of a Bear — The Artist

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