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'Avatar': The Psychedelic Worldview and the 3D Experience
For years, the psychedelic community has been anticipating the arrival of a new psychedelic medium which will be ushered in by the appearance of a new technology. The idea that technology and media can enhance psychedelics and even have psychedelic qualities has, after all, been an integral part of the psychedelic movement since the electronic trips festival of the sixties, Timothy Leary's enthusiasm for personal computer technology in the eighties, and Terrence McKenna's advocacy of virtual reality technologies and the internet in the nineties. Bets have been placed on 3D, HDTV, virtual reality, and other technologies, however, for a long time none of these seemed to take off in a massive way or fulfill its psychedelic potential in a way widely appreciated by the public.
Relations between psychedelics and popular culture continued, however, to be prosperous and fruitful. As noted by psychedelic thinkers such as McKenna and Eric Davis, psychedelic aesthetics have been continuously assimilated into mainstream media, as for example in the visual language of contemporary commercials and mainstream films.
The 2000's have been highly psychedelic in media. Ever-increasing film and screen resolution, the use of bright, colorful imagery in commercials and music videos, the imaginary landscapes created by computer generated animation, and the use of extravagant and highly associative visual language have all contributed to a psychedelic tendency in media in the first decade of the 21st century. Today, the advent of computer generated 3D cinema brings on a hope for a major psychedelic turn in electronic media.
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