Carina Erdmann:DISTANT BODIES AND ACCOMPLICES - Rethinking the interaction between player and avatar through remote LARPing

Doctoral Project

Carina Erdmann, PhD in the Arts

This art-based research aims to explore how forms of live performance can be used to extend and augment online gaming. Designing structures that enable meaningful interactions between player and avatar, it will entail the production of a series of game prototypes in which the player is controlling willful avatars (i.e. real persons engaging in a live-action role-playing game), embodied in the real world through a digital interface. 

Introducing the new method of Remote Live Game Play, a hybrid of analog and digital performance, we investigate how presence, irreversibility and feedback of a real person can result in another level of responsibility sensed by the player.
Joining the discourse around emerging forms of digital storytelling, mixed reality and immersive theater we wish to engage in a conversation on how the narrative tools common in game design (eg. Point-Of-View) and in performance (eg. presence of performer) can affect, inform and extend one another, thereby promoting a transdisciplinary approach. It will build upon my previous research on enabling structures for collaborative narration and worldbuilding in film and performance, and extend it into the digital realm. Turning the screen into a portal, I hope to connect physically and mentally distant worlds; not in search for the universal, but to perform a simultaneity of perspectives. 


  • dr. Steven Malliet (supervisor, KULeuven/LUCA)
  • dr. Rosanne van Klaveren (co-supervisor, KULeuven/LUCA)

Research unit: Inter-Actions

Duration: 2020 - 2024