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Versions is the essential guide to virtual reality and beyond. It investigates the rapidly deteriorating boundary between the real world and the one behind the screen. Versions launched in 2016 at the eponymous conference dedicated to creativity and VR with the New Museum’s incubator NEW INC.

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VERSIONS 2017 Speaker Spotlight: Brenda Laurel and Claire L. Evans

Brenda Laurel
VERSIONS 2017 Speaker Spotlight: Brenda Laurel and Claire L. Evans

Brenda Laurel was part of the first wave of artists working with Virtual Reality in the early 1990s, exploring VR’s multi-sensory possibilities with installations such as “Placeholder“, developed at Banff Center for the Arts in 1994 with collaborator Rachel Strickland. At our VERSIONS 2017 conference, writer and musician Claire L. Evans will interview Laurel about her pioneering career as a game designer, media scholar, and advocate for diversity and inclusiveness in videogames and VR.

Brenda Laurel is a published author, professor, and an interactive media professional since 1976, having worked as a designer, researcher, writer, and teacher. She has also worked in the computer game industry for companies like Atari and Activision, where she served as an engineer. In 1989, she co-founded Telepresence Research, a VR research and production company; in 1996, she co-founded Purple Moon, an initiative to create interactive media for girls.

At VERSIONS 2017 on February 25th, Laurel will be in conversation with Claire L. Evans. Evans is the Futures Editor of Motherboard, and founding editor of its science-fiction imprint, Terraform. She regularly participates in panels, conferences, and screenings on the subject of technology and culture. Her writing has appeared in Frieze, The Guardian, WIRED, and VICE. Her first book, The Future is Unmanned, a feminist history of the internet, is forthcoming from Penguin Random House. She is the singer and coauthor of the conceptual pop group YACHT.

Their conversation will explore Laurel’s vast experience as one of the pioneers in game and VR design. and is sure to be a can’t-miss event of the conference.

Check out our last two Speaker Spotlights on SH//FT co-founder Jenn Duong and The F_T_R’s Charlotte Furet. You can purchase tickets to attend our VERSIONS 2017 conference here.

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