Digital Supernova 2019

Title of ArtworkDigital Supernova 2019
Year of Origin2019
    Dimensions variable
    Generative virtual-reality installation
Collaboration/Shared Production/Research
    Le Passe Muraille, ADROA, Frédéric Deschamps, Adam Bernadac, Cyrille Henry / Antoine Villeret, Voxels Productions
Medium/Type of Artwork
Light Source
Light-Optical Factors
History of a work

Digital Supernova 2019 is a generative virtual reality installation projected onto Rodez Cathedral chancel vaults, its central nave (80 m), its two transepts and transept crossing (30 m).
30 different colored networks of light, combine with beautiful pictures explosions of massive stars and remnants of supernovas, develop one after the other every 2 minutes.

For this monumental immersive creation between art and science, Miguel Chevalier worked with astrophysicist Fabio Acero, a specialist in the remains of supernovas, nebulae and pulsars, who is developing his research at the AIM laboratory (CEA/Saclay). Thanks to this collaboration, Miguel Chevalier was able to combine his wired virtual worlds with a series of unpublished documents that Fabio Acero delivered to him.

These large meshes take form and then lose their shape, creating ever renewed, diversified universes. This huge virtual light curtain twists, moves and resizes to create diverse and complex shapes. Elements are attracted and repelled by one another, creating a breathing-like rhythm of dilation and contraction.

Digital Supernova 2019 resonates with the architecture of the cathedral and highlights the volumes of the columns and warhead arches that come to life before our eyes. A bridge is being built between the gothic high tech of stone and the high tech of current technologies. These suspended universes accentuate one’s impression of the monument’s loftiness and lightness.

Visitors are invited to stroll through the cathedral, sit on the chairs and look up to the sky. These digital constellations of pixels immerse visitors in an atmosphere bathed in light and open onto the infinite.

The Digital Supernova installation is accompanied by the music of Jacopo Baboni Schilingi. For this generative musical creation, the composer recorded fragments of liturgical songs from different periods which are then processed with morphogenesis algorithms to create infinite musical variations. This musical creation contributes to creating an atmosphere favourable to daydream and contemplation.
For five evenings, the work Digital Supernova is accompanied by musical improvisations performed by the two organists Frédéric Deschamps and Adam Bernadac with the cathedral organ. The musical improvisations of these two virtuosos amplify the immersion in the work. Image and music respond to each other in a fusion of emotional nature that participates in a true synesthesia.

Light, color and movement create a poetics of matter and elaborate a new aesthetics of virtuality. The installation Digital Supernova releases radiant energy into this space of plenitude. It plunges visitors into the mysteries of the universe.

Light, color and movement create a poetics of matter and elaborate a new aesthetics of virtuality. (25.11.2020)

Special features artworkn/a