Haptic Hongi



Mairi Gunn

Wendy Lawn 

Tania Remana

Prasanth Sasikumar

Sachith Muthukumarana 

Huidong Bai


He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata he tangata he tangata. What is the most important thing in the world?  It is the people, it is the people, it is the people.

Multi-media artist Tania Remana greets us in accordance with her cultural and self-determined values. She does this through a volumetric representation and as a computer-generated avatar. She is open and welcoming, yet in charge. This project is a collaborative effort by researchers in computer science, design, technological wizardry and 100% pure humanity. Given the myriad opportunities to engage with others, does this volumetric or computer-generated greeting prepare us for a real encounter?

Artist Biography:

Mairi Gunn is an award-winning documentary maker, cinematographer and video installation artist using Extended Realities for her PhD thesis common/room (Elam School of Fine Arts (Design) and Empathic Computing Laboratory, UoA). Her work with Māori and women from migrant backgrounds de-centres voices of European settlers to re-order contemporary power dynamics and overcome intercultural discomfort. http://empathiccomputing.org/team/mairi-gunn/

Wendy Lawn is a character designer, animator, writer and creative technologist. In 2020, she graduated with a Masters in Virtual Reality from the University of West England. Wendy holds a particular interest in humanising technology and developing technology for social good. Founder and Creative Director of TechnomanyXR, Wendy works with game studios to bring their vision of game characters to life. Website: https://wendylawn.co.uk

Tania Remana (Aotearoa-Tāmaki Makaurau) Ngāpuhi/Yugolavian /Romani. Educator (DipEd). Multi-media artist. Arti Whātua (Urban based). Kainga Rua – playback theatre company. Performer/singer/songwriter/designer. A mother and a nanny (tata) to her mokopuna and her great moko.

Prasanth Sasikumar is a Ph.D. candidate with particular interests in multimodal input in remote collaboration and scene reconstruction. For his Masters thesis at the HIT Lab (University of Canterbury), he worked on incorporating wearable and nonwearable Haptic devices. He is interested in building applications using wearable technology to solve industry problems like remote collaboration.  http://empathiccomputing.org/team/prasanth-sasikumar/

Sachith Muthukumarana is a Ph.D. candidate at the Augmented Human Lab in the Auckland Bioengineering Institute (University of Auckland), New Zealand. After completing a degree in Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering, he joined the Augmented Human Lab to research Human-Computer Interaction. His interests include Human-Computer Integration, Assistive Augmentation, and Haptic Interfaces. https://sachith.info/ | https://ahlab.org/people/sachith-muthukumarana/

Huidong Bai is a Research Fellow at the Empathic Computing Laboratory (ECL) University of Auckland. His areas of research include exploring remote collaborative Mixed Reality interfaces with spatial scene reconstruction and segmentation, as well as integrating empathic sensing and computing into the collaboration system to enhance shared communication cues. He is a director at Envisage AR. http://empathiccomputing.org/team/huidong-bai/