Empty Room project


Empty Room
immerse in a space without rules or regulations
let everything happen – sense – contemplate 
enjoy the different qualities of a space in perpetual metamophosis
where the sound unfolds what the eyes think they see
one and another confounding – the visible and the invisible
finite in the infinite
in one sole weaved frame

The EMPTY ROOM project

Empty Room is a project dedicated to the exploration of new musical composition and spatialization methods in virtual 3D spaces, developped for multiplayer or mono player on game engines such as Unity 3D, using the latest video game and virtual reality technologies.

A full 3D uncanny spatial experience

In Empty Room the user moves freely trough a 40m2 virtual plateau in the middle of a giant hypercube orbiting over the earth. All around and inside the plateau a genuine 64 channel audio spatializer is combined to an abstract and ever changing organic visual environnement. Three different perception of space are displayed : vaste and aerial, occlusive with perception shift, extreme reduced space sensation. Duration : 10′

NB : Empty Room is a real VR experience – not a 360° film.

Photo Hugo Arcier

Photo Hugo Arcier

More than 4000 showroom users

Empty Room was presented in the following exhibitions :

Acces festival of Pau 2015, Journées portes ouvertes of Ensad 2016, VR day at HUB PBI France, AES Convention 2016 (Audio Engineering Society) in Paris, Mac+ exhibition Maison des Arts de Créteil, Enghien #9 Biennale, Futur en Seine#7, Happy Cube Day at the CUBE d’Issy les Moulineaux, Beyrout Le Cube “The french digital artspace” exhibition, colloque Stéréoscopie at Louis Lumière, FISM 2016 (Forum International du Son Multicanal), Edesta Paris 8, Festival Virtuality 2017, VRIC Laval Virtual 2017, ImaginaSciences Annecy 2017, Virtual Reality Showcase National Museum of Singapore 2017. NAISA – 2018, Projet Archiver le Présent – Archélogie des medias. TGC 2018 The Global Composition – Journées du Patrimoins 2018 MSH Paris Nord. Dieburg Germany. New Adventures In Sound Art – Ontario – December 2018 / January 2019. Laval Virtual revolution 2019 #Research category.


Empty Room Singapor 2017

The research

The project was initiated by Christine Webster at EnsadLab Spatial Media laboratory in 2013. The project has lead to a thesis started in 2016, at CICM/Musidance Paris. LE CUBE artistic center of digital arts in Issy-les-Moulineaux is the official artistic partner of the project. We are also in partnership since July 2017 with Institut Français.

The project focus on three aspects in VR associated to experimental music :
– the new possibillities to compose and spatialize directly from within the VR scene
– the place of the listener and the interactions with the composition in the VR scene
– the VR scene output acting as a 3D audio-visual preservation and ditribution format

Empty Room is a constant work in progress, so far we got 2 versions :

Alpha version 2016
Unity 3D with Unity’s 5 3D sound features and stereo headphone output.
Mixed audio formats : mono, stereo, quadriphonic.
VR scene running on Unity 3D, in seated mode, on Mac OSX.
Mono user without interactions.

Beta version 2017 / 2018
Unity 3D 2017 – 3D sound in HOA 3D with Binaural headphone output
Mixed audio formats : mono, stereo, quadriphonic, Transaural Bi-Pan panning, HOA CICM library.
VR scene running on Unity 3D 2017, in seated mode, on Mac OSX with Oculus DK2 and in standing room scaled mode, on Windows 10 with HTC Vive.
Mono and dual user with interactions.

Related collaborations
– On the Beta version we have collaborate with the CNSMDP, testing audio object oriented scene transposition from Transaural Bi-Pan panned scenes on DAW to VR, with Jean-Christophe Messonnier.
– In January 2019 we made a serial of auditory scene tests, to compare interpretations coming from an Acousmonium and the same one heared from the virtualized version of the Acousmonium, percieved in VR.
With Natahanelle Raboissson, Motus and Pierre Couprie, Iremus.

VR Auditory Space project – ArTeC 2019
In the continuity of Empty Room we are working since February 2019 on the VR Auditory Space project selected by ArTeC. This project will adapt the CICM HOA library from Max7 to VR in C# and design an immersive 3D interface specifically thinked for the composer. The proof of concept will be released during fall 2019. VR Auditory Space is a collaboration between CICM Paris 8 and Spatial Media Ensadlabs. With Eliott Paris, David Fierro, Sofia Kourkoulakou. Chief of project, Christine Webster.

Empty Room acousmonium 64 voies

Empty Room – the in-game 64 virtual transducer mapping

Exhibition possibilities
Please consult us trough the contact form, Empty Room is very adaptative VR project and can be shown in various displays : conferencing, workshops, fair demos, art center exhibition installation …
Personnal on demand demos can be organized in Paris.

EnsadLab Spatial Media
SCAM Brouillon d’un rêve Pierre Shaeffer
La Francogrid
LE CUBE Centre d’art numérique d’Issy-les-Moulineaux
3D Sound Labs
CNSMDP Conservatoire National de Musique et de Danse de Paris.
CICM/Paris 8
Institut Français

VRIC 2017 ACM : Empty Room, an electroacoustic immersive composition spatialized in virtual 3D space, in ambisonic and binaural
IJVR 2017: Empty Room, how to compose and spatialize electroacoustic music in VR in ambisonic and binaural
Septentrion Presses Universitaires 2018 : Empty Room. Expérimenter la sensation d’espace en écoute binaurale et vision stéréoscopique en immersion numérique 3D. Christine Webster dans Stéréoscopie et Illusion. Archélogie et pratiques contemporaines.
The Global Composition 2018 Conference on Sound, Ecology, and Media Culture
Darmstadt-Dieburg/Germany, October 04 – 07, 2018 Proceedings Sabine Breitsameter, Cansu Karakis. Empty Room, exploring the plasticity of electroacoustic music spatialization in VR with Ambisonic 3D an Binaural techniques

Project Archiver le présent – Archélogie des Medias – Empty Room

Demo video (french)
Empty Room LE CUBE  / video demo


1 thought on “Empty Room project

  1. Pingback: Empty Room from Lebanon to Singapor | Christine Webster

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