Research

The convergence of light and the body is at the core of Michaela’s practice-based PhD enquiry which is critically framed by an ecological perspective on presence theory and positioned at the intersection of fine art, moving image and immersive experience design. Her research investigates the role of light and dark in evoking states of presence and uses the qualities inherent in complementarity of light and dark to elucidate and define a visual language in fulldome space.

Michaela translates her art practice to research method to observe the physiological and perceptual effects inherent in the embodied experience of light. Light is both the subject and the medium used in observational studies, artistic data visualisations and immersive projection designs to stimulate locus of attention, opto-kinetic responses, and the emotional and somatic cues which lead to the experience of presence in immersive spaces. The resulting light-based artworks and immersive projections reflect the relationship between the individual embodied experience of the world and infinity.

Michaela is a PhD candidate in Information Experience Design, School of Communication at the Royal College of Art, London. See Michaela’s RCA Research Profile.

Conference Papers and Presentations

French, M. (2016) Practice-based Research in Fulldome Space, RCA Fulldome Research Group presentation and screening for the Artist Lead Network Symposium at Fulldome UK Festival, National Space Centre, Leicester, UK.
French, M., Howey, T., Spanou, K. (2016) Extending the Language of Fulldome Space, Panel Discussion at Biennial Conference of the International Planetarium Society. Copernicus Science Centre, Warsaw, Poland.
French, M. (2015) RCA Fulldome Research Group, Presentation and screening at British Association of Planetarium Conference, Winchester Science Centre, UK.
French, M. (2015) Light, Space and Immersion, Paper presented at BFX Academic Conference 2015, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth, UK.
French, M. (2015) Light and the Experience of Wonder, Paper presented at Ruminations on Space and Time Symposium, The Old Lookout Gallery, Broadstairs, UK.
French, M., Gazzard, A. (2013) Maps of Time: exploring the rhythms of a mediated world Paper presented at 19th International Symposium of Electronic Arts, Sydney, Australia.
French, M. (2013) Light and the Experience of Wonder, Paper presented at Working Wonder Conference, Newcastle University, UK.
French, M. (2012) Art Meets Science, Artist presentation and exhibition at Institute of Physics, Higher Education Group Meeting, University of Hertfordshire, UK.

Publications

French, M. (2017) Bodies in Light: Mediating States of Presence in Digital Bodies: Creativity and Technology in the Arts and Humanities, Broadhurst, S & Price S. eds. Palgrave Macmillan (forthcoming).
French, M. Spanou, K. Howey, T. (2016) Extending the Language of Fulldome Space, Panel Discussion, Biennial Conference of the International Planetarium Society 2016 Proceedings.
French, M. (2015) A Year of Light: 365 Observations. Article for International Year of Light 2015 Official Blog, United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation.
French, M. & Gazzard, A. (2013) Maps of Time: exploring the rhythms of a mediated world, Proceedings of the 19th International Symposium of Electronic Art, ISEA2013, Sydney.