In December 2014, Shared_Studios launched the global public art initiative, Portals. Portals are gold spaces equipped with immersive audiovisual technology and spread out in public sites around the world. When individuals enter a Portal, they feel as though they are sharing the same space as someone in an identical Portal somewhere else on Earth. As many participants have put it, they “feel like they are breathing the same air.”
Each Portal is staffed by a Portal Curator who works with Portal Curators around the world to run the space, provide language interpretation, and organize events.
Since launch, Portals have connected more than 30,000 people across twenty countries in one-on-one dialogues. They have engaged tens of thousands more in collaborations, classes and performances. Community partners have built permanent Portals in diverse locations around the globe, including Syrian refugee camps, American cities, Afghan universities, and Mexican public parks. And notable guests have engaged the Portals network, including Barack Obama, Ban Ki-moon, John Kerry, Penny Pritzker, Samantha Power, Haider al-Abadi, Sergey Brin, Fareed Zakaria, Josh Radnor, Doug Liman and Ewan McGregor.
We have incredible technology at our fingertips, making it as easy to call someone down the street as across the globe. We harness that technology to connect communities to one another. We envision a world where no matter what the activity—work, exploration, play—people from all walks of life can enjoy the benefits of doing it with other human beings from communities unlike their own.
Shared_Studios created Portals and envisions a world where these are permanent fixtures of public spaces around the globe.