February 22, 2018

Virtual Reality


Commissioned by Montefiore Medical Center and in partnership with the Fashion Institute of Technology, we draw on location to translate New York City street scenes into virtual reality using Google Tilt Brush technology. It's a classical approach to groundbreaking technology that creates an immersive experience. 


With its famous cultural background (that gave rise to Hip-Hop) and today's vibrant streets, The Bronx was a natural pick for virtual reality art.

New York Botanical Garden

With its renowned floral shows and conservation efforts, in combination with its iconic art exhibits - such as Frida Kahlo and Dale Chihuly - the New York Botanical Garden was a essential pick for Tom Christopher's second virtual reality art piece.

A New York Botanical Garden worker in virtual reality

Barbara von Stechow and Christian Rother exploring the virtual reality artwork.

More of the 4d sketch of the New York Botanical Garden workers.

Seeking to cure the opoid crisis through virtual reality

The Virtual Reality Fine Art Program at Montefiore Medical Center, in partnership with the Fashion Institute of Technology, is pleased to announce the commission of three original artworks in virtual reality by artist Tom Christopher and his team.

For more than a decade, researchers have studied the effectiveness of using virtual reality in healthcare. Studies indicate that VR improves patient well-being and decreases fear and anxiety during hospital visits. VR programs offers physicians and patients more options than medication alone. However, no studies have explored curated fine art VR experiences to control pain management with quantifiable results.

Going beyond traditional gaming, The Virtual Reality Fine Art Program (VRFA) at Montefiore seeks to diminish anxiety, pain and opioid addiction through stimulus-rich and curated artistic environments. These experiences will serve as ‘immersive analgesics’ allowing physicians to treat their patients more effectively by improving patient’s health and hospital experiences and reducing reliance on pain medication, including opioids.

Existing VR programs employed in healthcare environments commonly use off the shelf experiences that involve gaming or meditative environments. Studies show the negative impacts from popular VR, including delayed development in children and depression.