Smell + Memory

Tin Heart

Mexican tin art, known as hojalata or lata, is one of the lesser known Mexican folk arts.  Appearing in the 1500s, brought over from Spain, it has changed little over the centuries. Inexpensive, strong and easily bent, it is an easy element for artisans to work with.  While sometimes used to make candlestick holders, bowls, plates and pitchers , objects are most often purely decorative because of tin’s tendency to rust.  Tin hearts are especially common around Christmas time as they are often used as ornaments.  This particular heart wears the perfume of my mother and evokes memories of her dressing our Christmas tree.  Our Christmas tree only wore tin art and it was tradition for us to hang them together.  We would celebrate Christmas Mexican style on December 24th to free up December 25th for the sole celebration of my birthday.

Tenement Museum – Trip Report

I lived in the Lower East Side on Ludlow and Broome for 4 years.  It was literally one block away from the Tenement Museum and I always had the intention of going but never did so I thought this first assignment would be the perfect opportunity to go and finally see it.

It was easy enough to find the hours quickly before even getting to the museum page due to Google’s side bar but also on the site it was relatively easy and intuitive – you click visit and then tour times.  The website and the main hub/bookstore are both modern.  The bookstore is all glass windows and sharp corners. The layout was a little strange with lockers on a lower level and only one bathroom it worked.  I went with Daniella and we decided to do the Shop Story tour.  It was the only one that mentioned an interactive exhibit of some sort that we were eager to try out.

Once we entered the actual museum the vibe was very different.  It’s obviously a historical building so anything modern was gone and we were transported back in time into a saloon from the late 1800s.  The recreation was done very well and was very detailed down to the plastic food displays.  It was mainly older people on the tour with us and they seemed to enjoy it more overall than is which is something interesting to note.  Our guide gave us the history of the neighborhood, the shopkeepers and the community.  It was made interactive by each of us being assigned a real life character and we had to introduce ourselves to each other and make assumptions about ourselves.  I think this might be something that older and younger people would like but felt a little forced/childish to me.  We had no kids on our tour but I do think they would have liked it.

There were no placards anywhere, all the knowledge was spoken by our tour guide and there were some supplementary copies of historical documents that were passed around.  We moved from the saloon into the kitchen and the bedroom.  All staged very well and accurately but a little cramped for the size of our tour.

The tour was 90 minutes long and dragged on for way to long in my opinion. I wish we would have had more autonomy.  The museum offers no option  for an unguided tour. I would have liked it much more if there were placards and I could gone through quickly at my own pace.  We were all forced to be studiers essentially.  Also if you wanted to use the restroom or leave early the guide had to walky talk someone to pick you up and escort you, I understand that’s required for the setting but was still a little uncomfortable.

The second to last room showed us the actual age of the walls, how many layers of paint had been done, how the floor weathered and some objects that were found.  This left the time of the late 1880s and started moving closer to now.

The last room was my favorite room and I wish you would be able to access more displays like that than.  There was an interactive display where you could place an object onto a screen and then an old phone would light up that you would pick up and listen to.  Images would be projected down that you could swipe through to read more stories.  It offered a lot of information quickly and was easy to use. It was the first text really that you wanted to read.

If I were the museum I would offer non-guided tour options, put some placards with information and let people go to access the interactive display faster.  It was easy to use, beautiful and had a lot of information of things I actually wanted to know. In the 90 minute tour we had to listen to what interested us and what didn’t interest us.


Simulation Theory Progress Report

We’ve got everything in motion having finalized our script, found our actor and half of our locations.

We updated our moodboard to reflect our changes in story and script.


We did some test shots on how the samsung camera looks, how it feels on a dummy, and how close you can get to the camera without a big distortion occurring.

We did a test of putting a 360 video in Unreal, with and without other objects in it.

Flor from Oriana Neidecker on Vimeo.

and have a rough of our “real” unreal world – we want to customize it more but this has all of the main elements

We’ve also located some 3d assets we want to potentially use for the rosharch scene


We’ve found our main actor who will be playing the psychiatrist and we’re in the process of filing the SAG paperwork

Our memory/world falling apart scene will be shot at the Black Lodge in Nolita.



We’re set to shoot the psychiatrist scene on Saturday and the bar scene on Monday or Wednesday.

What we need to focus on going forward on working in Unreal and building multiple layers of 360 video that can revealed/disintegrated through  raycasting to show the disappearing people/move between scenes.  I can imagine this turning into a logic problem and we’ll consider using Wanda as well.

Flor – Exploring 360 images in Unreal

Flor from Oriana Neidecker on Vimeo.
I continued last week’s exploration of 360 images in Unreal.  I like how you can create little bubble worlds you can enter within the main world you’ve created.  They’re like windows.  I love the idea of showing art work within these worlds and want to explore making a gallery in Unreal with bubbles of different work.  It allows so much more.  You can curate a whole world for each piece.  For this bubble I used one of my favorite photos by Flor Garduno of the painter Sergio Hernandez.  The 360 image was taken at the Dreamlands exhibit at the Whitney.

I’m still working on the source code for Unreal but should have it finished by next week.  You need to have Unreal to be able to access it but Chloe and I will be sharing our work through Unreal so that will be a good way to test how well it works and what amount of data you can synthesize from it.



My WoW midterm combined with my Fairytales in the 21st century midterm.  I came up with the concept of my story in Fairytales and used what I learned in Wow to begin executing. That being said I think it is far from done.  I have about 1/2 of what I envisioned for this project completed and it’s something I definitely want to keep working on.

The myth I was originally interested in interpreting was the Babylonian myth of the goddess Inanna’s descent into the Underworld. It starts off saying she was the goddess of heaven and earth but wanted to put her ear to the ground below.  She descends through seven gates to the Underworld and meets her sister, Ereshkigal, the queen of the Underworld.  At each of the seven gates she has to give up an item of clothing that gives her power (or her sense of identity) and arrives in the underworld naked. Her sister kills her and she is lost for a while.  She is eventually reborn and returns to Earth to claim her throne with more knowledge and sends someone else to take her place in the Underworld.

I wanted to make my 21st century interpretation of this myth one based on the Jungian idea of individuation.  The descent to the underworld  represents of her journey into her unconscious where she encounters her ‘shadow-self’.  

The goal of Jungian psychotherapy is “individuation,” which means the integration of our unconsciousness (shadow) with our consciousness (ego), which is what allows your complete Self to emerge.

So before she descends she is only conscious of her Ego and she has to give up her ideas of her identity to encounter her shadow, only once she has encountered, faced and accepted her shadow self does she begin her path to individuation.

Her sister represents her shadow self, the gates are represented by the tunnel of videos where she gives up her ideas, her sister killing her is the loss of her self as she knows it, her rebirth is the beginning of her individuation and becoming her full unique Self.


My tunnel scene is complete but I need to complete the forest and union levels.  I put in jpegs in the video to hold in where I’d like them to go. Video is super choppy because my laptop is about to die with Unreal and Screen capture – without screen capture it runs smoothly,

WowMidterm from Oriana Neidecker on Vimeo.

I “storyboarded” out the levels by staging everything in 3d space with stickers…photos to come


First draft of final script.

“The only journey is the one within.” – Rilke

Forest Level

Opening shot in forest. See trees look down and see body. Or look up and see trees. Try out camera movement if makes nauesous.

Once there was a girl that wanted to know more. She ran Heaven and Earth but knew little of what lay beneath. The Underworld was vast and mysterious. It whispered secrets in sleeping ears and left memories of shadows.There was a weight she felt in the forgotten secrets. So she decided to descend.


Walks down to a cave. There’s a door which she knocks.


But one can’t simply decide to descend.


She knocks again.


Going deeper is a process.  


Door slowly opens.


There are seven gates to the underworld and one must arrive bare.  


Cut to black. 


Underworld Level

Videos in Gates:

Will – put your hands up

Ego – get lost in the crowd

Mind – lose your mind

Sex – getting old shriveled

Illumination – knowledge – eclipse,lights

Magic -cults

Godhood -complete destruction


Walk up to a hand that serves as a boat.  Boat slowly takes you through the tunnel.  

Space Lady major Tom plays for entirety of tunnel.  You can look around but you can’t change the direction or the pace.


Boat exits tunnel.  Rides up to shadow-self.


There’s no guarantee of a welcome.  There’s no guarantee of return.


Shadow-self does execution motion.

Body/camera falls to the floor. Cut to black.


VR camera in middle but no body attached to it.

Here footsteps coming from in front and behind of you.

White and black selves running full speed towards you.


She ran into herself in the darkness.


Upon impact everything turns white.
Wake up in forest. Same as first shot.  Pulls out and you see she’s’ golden.


For my midterm I want to make something that I can use in a project I’m working on in Unreal.

I’m recreating this babylonian myth of a descent into the underworld.

I finished my underworld already but am now working on the Earth portal to the underworld from a forest.

I’m really interested in creating a whirlpool portal. I tried creating one with tiltbrush but I don’t really like how it came out when placed in the world.

I played around with the Phyllotaxis code and love the idea of using eyes and how the swirl kind of makes you dizzy.

I want to place it in this walnut I’m using as a cave


It would be ideal if I could eventually make it a 3d swirl you can enter.


Source Code:
var n = 0;
var c = 8;
//var c = 3;

var points = [];

var start = 0;

function preload(){
img = loadImage(‘eye.png’);

function setup() {
createCanvas(400, 400);

function draw() {
translate(width / 2, height / 2);
rotate(n * 0.3);
for (var i = 0; i < n; i++) {
//var angle = i * 137.5;
var angle = i * 130;
var radius = c * sqrt(i);
var x = radius * cos(angle);
var y = radius * sin(angle);
var hu = sin(start + i * 0.5);

image(img, x,y,15,15);
n += 5;
start += 5;

// Daniel Shiffman
// Code for: