3D-Immersive Therapeutic Art Gallery For Emotional Healing – Proposal


#Immersive Colour Experience (in relationship with) #Technology and #Feelings

#Therapeutic Art #LEDscreen #ColorDesign #Projections #Color Psychology #Color TimeBased Immersive Experience  #VisualArt #Huamnity #Infinity mirror 


1). How visual motifs for triggering emotional and spiritual responses can be used to serve a therapeutic purpose.

2). How expressionist art and the role of colour/lighting function in our self-reflectivity for abstract and intangible value.

by Serina Keh


(*An Infinity of Lights: Photos From the New Yayoi Kusama Exhibit)

Project/Goal: to create a therapeutic 3D art gallery for the purpose of healing a certain type of passive/negative emotion/feeling (I.e. Lost, grief, broken trust, numbness depression, loneliness, hopelessness).

– The possibility of reminding people what make us human (humanity); to remind people the humanity and resilience that inside us  by stimulating the imagination through the experiences with optimistic colours and 3D expressionist arts.

hug   (an open/inviting gesture: hug)

Proposal: Creating an art gallery/showcase that is built based upon abstract images and expressionist performances in a hermetic space; in addition to that, the 3D gallery will also be practicing an intense use of 3D projection (on the four walls + on the celling + on the floor = a total of 6 surfaces) to maximize an immersive experience for the therapeutic purpose.

I.e. (something like Image #2 but with projection on 6 surfaces, instead of only on 4 surfaces; See Image #3 for reference. As well as 3D models in image #1)

(Image #1)1

(Image #2)2

(Image #3)3

(Image #4: Models for the infrastructure of the diverse rooms in the therapeutic 3D gallery for the various passive emotions)4Inspiration + Explanation:

a). Inspiration for Themes:

Fauvism (les Fauves / French for “the wild beasts”), German Expressionism, Cubism, Surrealism, Abstract expressionism.

00.png  (Fauvism)

            I.e. Expression:

German Expressionism emerged when Germany was isolated and in the suffer of the First World War, this creative movement was originally intended as a way to express the physical and emotional toll the war took. However, it remains its influences even after WWI, in all kind of art forms such as cinema, painting, dance, etc.

Expressionism is a highly symbolic and stylized art form. I see expressionism as an exploration of darker human impulses, a desperate desire of seeking hopes and lights in life, as well as an artistic experimentation with shattered surfaces of the “truth”. Expressionism allows people to effectively express the distortions of their mind through demonstrating a distortional gist of the scene. In the meantime, it can also be seen as the artist’s comment of the affairs through extreme visual motifs. (The narration is the their own interpretation of the reality )


Paul Kornfeld believes that expressionism is the alternative realism; I argue that expressionist art to some extent is a representation of the artist’s interpretation and their own version of reality (who knows what is reality anyway?), rather than a complete representation of the actuality. It is undeniable that there are restrictions of the expressionist art in terms of how effective for the viewers to reciprocate the piece, but one approach could not serve the purposes for all art. Instead of disputing the efficiency of expressionist art or questioning the credibility of expressionist style and approach in term of the intelligibility and the trueness of an event, I consider expressionist art as a sincere attempt to find its own way of expression through marrying the extremes regardless of its efficiency on the audience.


Strengths of Expressionism in Acting (draft ideas):

– For the 3D (expressionist) performances in the gallery (Projection)

1). In the light of the strength of expressionism,

artists can arguably deliver a stronger reflective emotion and thought that is directly responding to the event than naturalist artists. As Paul Kornfeld believes that, a real-life person has concerns for many events at the same time; human are multifunctional beings, which will prevent them from externalizing themselves completely, as well as immersing themselves in a single experience due to their multiple exiting shadows of both their present situation and their past. Therefore, expressionism can be an alterative solution for this because it detaches the person’s concentration from the irrelevant events of the current one, and minimizes the complexity of a real-life person by isolating themselves in this single moment and not influenced by the sub-consciousness (maximize the pure emotions and response to the event). The only information actors needed in this moment is the representative of thought and feeling in this case. As a result, they will be able to diminish the mixed emotions of the person and truly (hopefully and fully) present the essences of it.

(i.e “The Scream” by Munch)8

The painting illustrates the distortions of the person’s mind by demonstrating and highlighting the distortion of the scene; it serves the purpose of emphasizing the inner chaos of the protagonist’s mind, as well as highlighting the chaotic theme of the whole painting. As a result of giving a straightforward definition of the theme, the audience/viewer can definitely get a clear gist of the art piece. Expressionist style makes the art itself strictly distinct about what message is the art trying to convey, it decrease the chance for the audience to come up with their own conclusion. So in a way, expressionism is an alternative realism (a more extreme and amplifying version) in term of its in-focus and exaggerated reality.

Drawbacks to keep in consideration:

  • The “imperfection” and diversity of the audience members: A piece can be very well designed, but how well the intention being taken in also depends on the audience
  • Expressionism compliments the goal of fully presenting one single emotion and thought at one time that is directly responding to the event. However, the flip side is that then the art piece only becomes a symbol of a thoughts and emotion. Although that might be the purpose of the artist, human never only has one pure single thought at one time, in most of the cases our thoughts always intertwine with many others. Additionally, we cannot ignore the fact that people react to events differently based on the person’s age, background, class identity, and political and philosophical views, etc. how one is able to decide what are the true representative thought and feelings of a certain event. Or whether it is genuine or not? Can a symbol of an emotion truly represent an authentic emotion when it is dehumanized?



One can argue that the use of extreme distortions in expression serves the purpose of showing an inner emotional reality, rather than what is on the surface. Yet, while the expressionist artists rejected science as a value life force, it also decreases the authenticity of the reality and dehumanizes the events. Therefore, the bond between the viewers and the artists is not naturally connected. It is debatable whether expressionism is the alternative realism or the artist’s version of the realism. However, we have to give credits to the expressionist artists for having one of the most powerful effects on the viewers in terms of the clearness of its theme. If the expressionistic techniques are used right, it is an opportunity for the audience to be more objective to the event, and it is also definitely a sincere attempt of the artists for finding their own way of expression.

How I want to corporate the idea of expressionism into my project?

– The use of Projection:

– Using expressionist images to open and illuminate the 3-dimensional space by using both static images and 3D models.10

– Using laser, multiple projections and intense lighting, the audience is fully immersed in an artificial dimensional space.

  • Images on 4 walls + celling + floor (6 surfaces in total) to further open the space and give more dimensions, as well as to create a more surreal and personal experience.


b). Inspirations for color: Music band: Coldplay

Bright and colorful usage in concerts, music videos and branding etc.

I.e. applying rainbow-color to brand logo, decoration of instruments, microphones, clothing, merchandise, etc.,

Examples of Logo:

a        x.png

Examples of some instruments:

q.pngd    c

Examples of branding, concerts, merchandise and clothing:


Reasons I find Coldplay as a band therapeutic:

  • Wherever they go, there is always “rainbow”.
  • The colors of rainbow is essential for the experience because rainbow implies the sun shines again after the rain, after a storm comes a calm, which give a sense of hope in life.
  • Sharing faith and hope through music and color with their fans allows them to connect and make the experience personal and meaningful.

c). More Inspiration for Optimistic Colors and Set: Color Psychology

Case study: Movie: La La Land (Musical)

1). How to use the expression elements such as color, set, and music to create an emotional experience.

2). Example: color yellow http://www.telegraph.co.uk/fashion/style/la-la-land-yellow-optimistic-colour-everyone-should-wearing/

“Yellow is often described as an optimistic, life-affirming color that reminds us of sunshine and stimulates our mind, body and emotions,” says Helen Venables, managing director of image consultancy firm, House of Color. “Research has shown that yellow arouses the brain and helps memory.”

“Wearing yellow indicates that you are full of self-confidence, a great communicator and that you enjoy life,” agrees Jules Standish, color counselor and author of How Not To Wear Black. “It’s the color of mental intellect and clarity, and wearing it will help with all decision making. It will also help to overcome fear and depression and is an inspiring color to wear at work – not only will you feel more positive and self-assured but, for everyone else, seeing you in yellow will make them smile.”

3). https://moviepilot.com/p/how-movie-color-manipulates-our-emotions/4189393

“From ‘La La Land’ To ‘Mad Max’: How Color Manipulates Our Emotions In Film

Case Study of the psychological effects of color: The Use Of The Primary Colors In ‘La La Land’


Damien Chazelle’s ‘La La Land’ [Credit: Summit Entertainment]

Damien Chazelle successfully utilizes the primary colors (red, yellow, and blue) to achieve a subtle yet impressive effect. Every scene in the movie had at least one of the primary colors all over it. In the top two frames, for example, though less obvious, both Sebastian and Mia are wearing cool blue (icy, distant, or even cold) when they first meet. This meeting is, however, set in a green and red environment, where neither of them are happy, almost as if they are most at comfort with primary-themed places.


What they (all the inspirations) have in common?

  1. A wild range of color spectrum, intense color, agitated brushstrokes
  2. Creative and imaginary
  3. Reflection of abstract and intangible values
  4. Attempts to depict emotion
  5. Emotion-provoking
  6. Simplicity
  7. Sense of natural
  8. A genuine expression of feelings, thoughts, and stories
  9. *Giving a feeling of hope (sense of optimism from a dark place)

(Meanwhile, all these characteristics allow people to make personal connection with the pieces)

Technology is the future

What do I want to explore and why? 

With the integration of technology, I want to explore the roles of colors and abstract ideas in live arts and performance, how these elements are able to evoke emotions and influence the psychology of the experiencers. I believe that the effective use of colors and abstract images can provoke a deeper and more meaningful responses from the viewers to the subject, thereby also to accelerate the interaction between the art piece (whether it is an live performance, or static pictures) and the experiencers to a more spiritual level. (How: Art piece and the viewers are bonding through the process of making a connection from their own memories and the attempt to understand the abstract idea; meanwhile stimulated by the effects of colors).

I was thinking if colors and abstract/expressionist images could have this effective psychological effect on people’s emotions and feelings, we could use this as a therapeutic mean to make positive impacts on mental health issue.

I am avoiding making any association with the word “politics” with this project. However, the condition in the world, and what have been going on lately are a big part of my inspiration of this project. What is happening around the world has been very chaotic that people have became very extreme, either too angry or beginning to feel numb. People are claiming losing faith in humanity; people are forced to separate from their family for ridiculous reason; people are hurt and feeling helpless and untrusting.

I am safe, temporally, but these negative emotions have been in my mind and affecting my daily performance. I feel really close to them and I feel responsible. We are weak, we have weakness because we are human, but we are also highly resilient, we need to remember that. Or sometimes, we just need a little push and a reminder of the power of humanity. This is why this project is important to me and close to my heart.

Personal Notes:

Tasks / Questions to think:

1). A piece/decision is made, the project is the outcome, but what about the BEFORE?              – – What do you value? Why does it matter to you? Why do you want to make this project? What is your priority?

2). Rethink the results of the process, not the outcome.

– What is your principle / interest?

3) Be specific, start from a smaller scale.

– What do you want to do with ONE LED light? ONE Color?

  • i.e. experiment with (liquid) colors in a water glass (theatrical with water?) or in a dark room.
  • Flowing water is therapeutic to me, what can I do with it?
  • -Look up “Big Art Group“, “Hito Steryel(“Being Invisible can be Deadly” “How to not be seen”) for Projection and color inspiration.

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