"The Identity Project Book." Initiated as part of the 2022 New Jersey Book Arts Symposium, this immersive technology project highlights the role books and art can play in how people understand and experience their own identity. The Identity Project Book is an emergent collaboration between Béatrice Coron, artist, Sonia Yaco, the Emerging Technologies Librarian for Rutgers University and Executive Director of the New Jersey Book Arts Symposium, and Richard Anderson, Director of Virtual Worlds for Rutgers University.
Béatrice Coron first created The Identity Project as different papercut pages, each presenting a different construction of self. In an exhibition in 2009 at Lehman College, the Aferro gallery presented the papercuts as a life-size artist book installation. The online project began in 2022 and is in constant re-construction. The project is enriched by further series such as the "Fashion Warriors" and "Fashion Bugs," which present a quest for identity through costumes; other series explore the construction of self in gender, environment, and literature.
The subject explores the notion of identity/ies. Identity can mean either sameness (when identifying with somebody or something) or what makes a person unique (your identity papers). Contextual layers of identities include social, emotional, family, tribal, intellectual, etc. The notion of a "real" self looks like a utopian construction and is well-fitted to a virtual world.
The collaboration with Rick Anderson enables a unique experiment: a virtual artist book where words and images interact and behave in new ways through extended reality (XR )technologies and the latest in machine learning. .
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