In a TV interview on the news analysis program Kastljós last night, Icelandic musician Björk spoke of the world of virtual reality, which she has embraced. At the exhibition Björk Digital, which opened at Harpa Concert Hall earlier in the month, guests get to experience the music from her latest release, Vulnicura, with all their senses. She confessed she finds it exciting to work with a medium which is still taking shape, and added that this technology opens a path for musicians onto the world’s largest stage.
The multimedia exhibition premiered in Australia last summer, but traveled to Tokyo, London and Montreal before opening at Harpa this month. At every new location, one work is added to the exhibition, but the videos on display make use of the full scope of virtual reality technology. Björk sees this technology as a logical continuation of her career.
Ever since she was a member of the band The Sugarcubes, she has worked with music vieos. “MTV was in fact the virtual reality of the eighties,” she explained. “You mustn’t forget that all these [now] common methods, like putting a video on TV, were very revolutionary in their own time. The feeling is a bit similar in virtual reality, and it’s so much fun to participate in this medium while people are still defining what it is.”
Björk maintained that virtual reality encompasses the dream vision of musicians such as Richard Wagner, who wanted all aspects of art to come together in the same work. “Yes, this is some sort of pocket-Wagner. I believe many musicians, ever since the days of Wagner, were interested in engaging all the senses and having a 360˚ stage. You’ve got your head inside the largest stage in the world, where anything can happen. And this is so exciting, immensely exciting.”