Wes Viz

Multi-disciplinary XR artist Wes Viz’s art engages in a critical commentary on our ongoing relationship with technology. Her multidisciplinary practice has a dark and distinctive style, and spans platforms from traditional to augmented and virtual realities.

Peter Traynor | Ed. MiMi Lamine | 3 November 2021

Woman Digital Artist: Wes Viz - The Sublime - Agora Digital Art
Website
NFT on Foundation

Wes Viz is based in both London, UK and Tallinn, Estonia. Over a 15-year career as a video director and animator, Wes has built a strong portfolio of advertising and music videos working for a diverse range of clients. She has extensive experience in animation and video production and her videos and projects have featured in Creative Review, Kaltblut Magazine, Hunger and Paper Mag among others. 

Wes Viz is known for her unconventional and edgy approach that combines a cyberpunk aesthetic with dark gothic undertones. This style has seen her work with bands, DJs and musicians like Hozier, Biffy Clyro, and Kid Brunswick. She has also created NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) of her music visuals with music artists such as Kareful and Pictureplane. 

Wes Viz utilises new and emerging technologies in her commercial work, and in more intimate artistic pieces she critically explores the impact of these same technologies in shaping both personal identity and mental states. She also looks ahead – to the rapidly evolving ‘metaverse’ and asks – how and in what ways will this affect how people communicate with each other? To explore these themes, she is now developing her own immersive VR art experiences.

Current Event

The Sublime 3.0: Fear and Awe, Agora Digital Art x thewrong biennale5 (2021)

Wes Viz, LINEAR INTERPOLATION 1 (2021) animation 02:54 min. Courtesy of the artist.

What’s next?

Wes is currently working on a piece that will explore how we perceive time in Virtual Reality and the ways this will impact our experience of the metaverse. It will also ask questions about the monopolisation of VR by big corporations.

LUX - Smell of Success feat. Wax Wings from WES VIZ on Vimeo.

Wes Viz, Wes Viz X Wax Wings Present ‘Lux’. Kaltblut Magazine.
Creative Direction, Animation and AR Filters – Wes Viz (Secret Lair) @wesviz
Photography and Styling – Justyna Radon (86Rn) @justyna_radon
Director of Photography- Adam Radon (86Rn) @86rn_video
Studio Assist and Layout – Svitlana K. @sveety_k
Music by and featuring Wax Wings @waxwingsofficial
Post Production by Secret Lair @secretlairtv

Did you know?

Wes Viz is entirely self-taught in her use of emerging technologies and reflects on this in her talk ‘Art of the Visual’, which is available online. 

Featured Projects

LINEAR INTERPOLATION 1 (2021)

Woman Digital Artist Wes Viz presents INTERPOLATION 1 (2021) for The Sublime 3.0 - Agora Digital Art
Wes Viz, LINEAR INTERPOLATION 1 (2021). Courtesy of the artist.

Wes Viz’s contribution to the Agora Digital Art Pavilion for the wrong biennale is LINEAR INTERPOLATION 1, a personal self-portrait expressing the artist’s experience of the covid pandemic as a transitional point. This piece shows the transitional frames in an animation, as in life, that are so often forgotten but critical for change. As Wes says about the piece: “These are the liminal spaces of movement, the mid-step, the leaning forward and rebalancing. We are always between poses. We are always in motion, even standing still”. 

The work also references the often overlooked ‘tween artists’ – a role in traditional hand-drawn animation. These artists are the ones who fill in the frames, while senior animators fill in the main poses. In both digital and traditional animation, these are crucial roles to create the narrative of the whole. 

'Art of the Visual' feat. Wes Viz from WES VIZ on Vimeo.

Wes Viz, ANTICOMMUNION (2021). Courtesy of the artist.

ANTICOMMUNION (2021)

Wes Viz’s film ANTICOMMUNION was a finalist in the Dazed x Circa class of 2021 and was displayed on the neon boards at Piccadilly Circus, Seoul K-Pop Square and Tokyo’s Yunika Vision in Shinjuku. 

The artist developed ANTICOMMUNION as a response to her feelings of “dread and intrigue” around the idea of living significant portions of our lives in Virtual Reality. The film features a female character wearing a VR headset, based on 3D scans of the artist’s own body. While the character can be seen to experience a range of emotions and mental states, the viewer is never shown what these are and can only guess at what she is perceiving through her headset. This asks important questions about the nature of community in the future and to what extent we will continue to communicate with others, in the ‘real’ world or virtual. The music that accompanies the piece was composed by London-based musician Wax Wings. 

ITS ALL OVER - FLÆN from WES VIZ on Vimeo.

Wes Viz, ITS ALL OVER – FLÆN (2020) video 01:30 min. © Courtesy of the artist.
Visual by @wesviz
Out on SCALE TRAX @scale.trax

It’s All Over (2021)

Wes Viz created the visuals for the track It’s All Over for the Ireland-based DJ Flæn in 2021 and she already considers it a favourite of her works. A haunting industrial track, the accompanying video starts in darkness before revealing glimpses of trees, a forest, illuminated in flashes of red, white and green. It feels like a horror film at first, as if a flashlight prowls the scene. As the track builds, however, and the beat like an anvil gets more urgent, we realise there are just trees. Reflecting on both the title of the track and the artist’s other work, it starts to feel less like a horror movie and more like a memorial, or a pointed question: is it all over – for the trees? As humans increasingly move into the virtual world, what will become of the forests, already under siege? 

VR Exhibition in Hubs Mozilla

  • The Sublime 3.0 Fear and Awe - in partnership with thewrong biennale for Agora Digital Art
visit >> The Sublime 3.0 *

Key achievements

In 2019 Wes created a piece for NASA and Channel 4 as part of the 50th Anniversary celebrations of the Apollo 11 moon landing. At 135 hours the work is the longest-running audio-reactive animation in broadcast history. Wes considers this a “lifetime achievement” and says of the time she spent creating it: “I didn’t sleep for three weeks”. 

Woman Digital Artist: Wes Viz Little Dot Studios, Apollo 11 live stream (2019) - Agora Digital Art

Solo / duo shows

Group shows / Festivals

2021, The Sublime 3.0: Fear and Awe, Agora Digital Art x thewrong biennale nr5, London, UK

2021, 30 Years of Pretty on the Inside, Courtney Love and Nicola Mary Wyatt, London, UK

2021, Class of 2021, Dazed x Circa Art, London, UK

Museum Shows / Festivals

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