The VR Face Mask
Qatari architect-cum-designer Mohammed Faraj Al-Suwaidi imagines a face mask that is a derivative of gas masks, safety goggles and air filters, stressing on safety, during the times of the Pandemic.
Art is said to be a spinoff of tumultuous times. Many of the art manifestations we see today are a result of the lockdown period in countries bringing the best out of creative people. Qatar’s Mohammed Faraj Al-Suwaidi is an architect, animator and designer with a BA in Architecture from Plymouth University and an MA in Architecture from the University of Liverpool.
Here he imagines a face mask in virtual reality during the times of lockdown.
“The Personal Face Mask is part of an experimental series that has been created in Virtual reality. This digital medium provided me with a new scope of development for future works,” says Mohammed. “The concept revolves around extreme measures of safety and protection – addressing the precaution to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Gas masks, safety goggles and air filters inspire the development of this design. Visual modifications are added with the intention of an individuals’ aesthetic and identity.”
On how art and digital platform has influenced new interventions during the pandemic, Mohammed says, “There is a clear shift in the digital platform being utilized in everyday life. This has now become ever prominent during this quarantine period. The outcome of this pandemic varies based on the context, especially in an ever changing and diverse art community. I believe that adaptation and self-development are two crucial factors that an artist should consider.”
Mohammed was in residence at the Fire Station and had exhibited his work along with other artist and also had a solo exhibition at the Fire Station Museum called Digital Transactions. The exhibition touched on how he is influenced by the world of social media, its continuous series of interactions and the imposed trends on consumers through digital platforms.