Portals Connect People Around the World in Dialogue

August 8, 2018

Communications Staff

shipping container painted gold
Photo credit: Courtesy of Shared Studios

A shipping container, or Portal, equipped with immersive audiovisual technology will be stationed September 6 through November 10, 2018, in Wilder Bowl. The Oberlin College community is invited to use the Portal to engage with individuals in other Portal locations across the globe.

This fall, from September 6 through November 10, a gold Portal will be stationed in Wilder Bowl at Oberlin College.  

Created by art, design, and technology collective Shared Studios, Portals are gold shipping containers equipped with immersive audiovisual technology. Inside a Portal, an individual can engage with others in a distant Portal, live, as if in the same room with freestanding screen “walls” surrounding them. These live sessions can include discussions, musical performances, or other interactions and are typically prearranged. Since launching in 2014, Portals have connected more than 125,000 people around the world in intimate dialogues.

View Play a Portal video.

The Oberlin Portal is connected with a network of other Portals in various locations across the world, including such cities as Berlin, Mexico City, Gaza City, Nairobi, Los Angeles, and Chicago. View the full list of Portal sites .

Oberlin faculty, staff, and students are invited to schedule a session with another Portal location. Please suggest a topic of conversation or an area of interest to engage in and note the Portal location you’d like to connect with. Some previous Portal engagements include:

  • Students at the Johns Hopkins University collaborating with students at the University of Palestine in Gaza City, exploring ways of improving public health through scientific and design-based innovation.
  • Opera singers performing for a Syrian refugee community in Jordan.
  • Dancers at the University of Maryland collaborating with rappers in Herat, Afghanistan.
  • Classical Persian painters in Isfahan, Iran taught Persian painting to students around the world

View a list of past Portal projects at educational institutions.

To schedule a Portal pairing, submit your information using the online form . Once submitted, the Oberlin_Portal curator will contact you to tailor your experience. Please note that a Portal can accommodate approximately 12 people.

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