Brain Trip
Centraal Museum

Brain Trip: an interactive installation for the Surreal Worlds exhibition in the Centraal Museum Utrecht, in which you go on a voyage into surrealism via your brain waves. Surrealism is inextricably linked to the subconscious. Surrealists found that reality is not an objective, rational fact; it is all about how one experiences it. It is about perception, and emotions, fears, fantasies, and hidden desires play a big part in this. By using the visitors brain activity as an interface, the visitor truly experiences surrealism.

The brief

Give the visitors of the Surreal Worlds exhibition in the Centraal Museum Utrecht an interactive experience related to to the subject of surrealism.

The idea

Brain Trip: A voyage into surrealism via your brain waves
Surrealism is quite weird sometimes. Our subconscious self will do it’s very best to hang on to reality. To experience surrealism we need to let go of this realism and relax. By connecting the Brain Trips’ brain reader to the brain, it will measure whether one is focused or relaxed. This state of mind influences your expedition of discovery into the surreal world.

The way it works

Brain Trip’s brain reader connects to your brain and measures your brain’s electric activity by EEG. If you relax, you will go farther on your journey into the interactive animation. This animation that starts in the real world that gradually changes to the surreal world. When you focus you rewind and relaxing you play/ forward the animation.

Sound played a big role in the installation. The sounddesign consists of many different tracks, loops and sounds that start or end based on the users brainactivity and the visual content shown. This adds an extra layer to the experience and gives the user feedback.

If the surreal surroundings are more than you can take, you can focus to get closer to reality again and go back in time. At a certain point, there is no way back. Your brain is exhausted and the only thing you can do is surrender to the surreal world. To give you a more tangible momento, a unique travel report, based on your brain activity during the Brain Trip, will be projected at the exit and can be shared on social media.

The results

Brain Trip was on exhibition from February 15th through June 9th, 2014 at the Surreal Worlds exhibition at the Centraal Museum Utrecht.

We achieved the following: