Alex Coulombe is a NYC-based architect turned XR-chitect who has been crafting immersive experiences for over 10 years. After co-founding a theater group in college that produced many of his original shows (WhAT, now in its 15th year at Syracuse University), Alex received his B. Arch and proceeded to work at such illustrious architecture firms as Rafael Viñoly and Zimmer Gunsul Frasca before landing at Fisher Dachs Associates: Theatre Planning and Design. There, Alex honed his craft in the design of powerful theatrical spaces. In 2013 he began working with VR using the Oculus Rift DK1 and developed the world’s first robust virtual reality system for evaluating theatre sightlines. Soon he expanded this system to utilize virtual reality in everything from the dome projection layout for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, to testing actor blocking, set design, lighting, and seating options for Kenneth Branagh’s production of Macbeth at the Park Avenue Armory.
Before long, Alex formed Agile Lens, a creative studio focused on developing custom XR content for architecture, the arts, as well as cutting-edge prototypes for such companies as Intel, Samsung, Magic Leap, and Epic Games. Architecture projects have included: The Shed, David Geffen Hall, and the Statue of Liberty Museum. In 2018 Agile Lens began to create live and standalone theatrical XR pieces, including That Kind of Guy (premiere at the TCG National Conference and now available on Magic Leaps everywhere), and Ghosted (award-winner at North Bend Film Festival and the NYC Media Lab Summit). Under the title “Alive in Plasticland,” Agile Lens and partners spent two years studying live performance in VR, culminating in Loveseat. An official selection of the 2019 Venice Film Festival, Loveseat was directed by Kiira Benzing with Alex designing the virtual theatre, set, props, and lighting, seen live during each performance simultaneously in Venice as well as inside VR headsets around the world. Follow Alex on Twitter and Youtube @iBrews.