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Sarah Rothberg


Water Without Wet (WWW), 2020

Interactive virtual reality, real-time generated video, custom software

Water Without Wet (WWW) is an interactive poem and virtual environment that highlights water as an integral part of our lives — connecting us to each other, to other creatures, to the Earth and atmosphere — fluidly running through all of the Earth’s systems, between bodies, the sky, the ocean, and then back around. The installation is a poetic invitation to contemplate one's bodily connection to the water cycle and the challenges of connecting individuals to the ecosystem as well as the bridge between action and impact. The work comprises two viewpoints: the VR (virtual reality) headset user and the spectators. The user is immersed in a virtual world that simulates interactions with water — drinking out of a glass, flushing a toilet, watering a plant. The spectators see the virtual world rendered on two screens of real-time generated videos reacting to the user’s movements, displaying unique and ever-evolving compositions at various levels of abstraction.


Sarah Rothberg is an interactive media artist who aims to create idiosyncratic experiences that encourage new ways of thinking, understanding, and communicating. Rothberg uses embodied technologies (such as VR, AR, installation, interactive performance, worldbuilding) to invite participants to feel relationships between the personal and systemic, with a specific focus on the impact of new media on ways of being, understanding and interacting with the world. Rothberg teaches at NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program and is a 2023 Jerome Hill Artist Fellow.

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