“The Deep Listener”- Experience the Sights and Sounds of Kensington Garden in Augmented Reality

Art

“The Deep Listener” is an inaugural project that was undertaken by Danish artist Jakob Kudsk Steensen for the Serpentine Galleries Augmented Architecture programme.

Developed in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture, Steensen takes viewers on a guided virtual tour of the Kensington Gardens at Hyde Park. to see and hear up close, by way of a downloadable audio-visual app, London Plane Trees and reedbeds spread around Kensington Garden, along with species of bats, parakeets, and stalked-wing Azure Blue damselflies.

The Danish artist remixed a landscape and created simulations that will appear on screens as a visual art of apparition-like forms in a real ecological environment. Through the “The Deep Listener” app, they will be able to see up close a swarm of bats flying and changing directions, whilst communicating their location in murmurations.

Nearby is a plane tree that the augmented reality delivers like a monstrous living organism, to which the yellow and green colours of parakeets stretch out like a ribbon.

Using “The Deep Listener” App to View the Serpentine Galleries’ Augmented Reality Landscape

“The Deep Listener” app can be downloaded from the Google Play Store, vian iPhone 6s and above or on Android 8.0 or later models. Devices running on Android OS must have ARCore support to make the programme work.

Prior to opening the app, be sure to turn on the sound or use headphones for a better appreciation of the Augmented Reality (AR) audio. Activating the app will enable users to see and hear the sights and sounds of the landscape architecture within, or away from the Serpentine Galleries. The experience though will slightly differ when viewing away from Serpentine, since a smaller version of each AR species will be in view.

  • A map will appear upon activation of the app, which viewers can use in navigating the augmented ecological trail.
  • Upon reaching the correct location, take notice of the orbs marking the plane tree.
  • Tap on the orb to start the audiovisual experience
  • Once you arrive at the correct location, the orb on the plane tree will glow on your screen.
  • Touching the orb allows the app user to connect with the view and the soundscape; whilst moving around will change the sound, rhythm and tempo in response to one’s movement.
  • Continue to use the map to explore the virtual landscape by tapping every orb marking each location where the rest of the species can be found. Once the orb glows, it denotes that the AR land and soundscapes have been triggered.