Strange Oceans

Strange Oceans is a poem designed by Cassandra Loh for the digital age. Textually, it depicts how we socially interact in online spaces. As a designed artefact, it uses digital tools to extend and support the poem’s text.

In the digital space, multimedia opportunities offer new textual behaviours that affect a worker’s experience. By developing accessible and intuitive works for digitally native readers to operate, digital poetry can provide fruitful communication opportunities for powerful self-expression. 

The poem Strange Oceans investigates three main digital tools for their poetic effects through practice-led research: mouse events, animation, and typography. The most prominent use of these tools is as metaphors to persuade readers to feel or do something, as well as subtext to add layers of meaning to the text. Through these tools, the poem designs a space to encourage empathy and immersion.  


Strange Oceans is a short interactive and animated experience that can be viewed in-browser (Chrome recommended).  

Centre for Design Research
Te Kura Toi a Hoahoa
School of Art and Design

Te Wānanga Aronui o Tāmaki Makau Rau,
Auckland University of Technology


Susan Hedges
Mandy Smith

Authors are responsible for obtaining permission to publish images or illustrations with their papers in CDR; neither editors nor publishers of CDR accept responsibility for any author’s/authors’ failure to do so.

© Centre for Design Research, AUT University 2021