XR Experience Program
Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.
Liminal Lands is an immersive installation realized at the museum Luma Arles in France, created from the wetlands of the Camargue. Through VR, the audience begin a 4-player journey as humans in the wetland reservation, and morph into elemental energies as they travel across the forgotten landscape. Fresh water and salt are in constant flux as seasons change. Visitors adapt to insect scale, surrounded by towering ancient wood covered in salt, and spatialized sounds respond to the visitors’ movements. Liminal Lands highlights the unseen energies in the natural world, and is part of Erratic Animist Studio's exploration of methods to make physically immersive exhibitions digitally available.
Red Antz an interactive music video for VR, created in collaboration with the experimental punk band Palberta. Immerse yourself in an alien world bounded by the confounding logic of Palberta’s songwriting. Interact with objects to generate and recompose the band’s song. Find other sound-makers to perform your own noisy solos. Do a weird dance on the big screen. No one hears the song the same way.
“Surviving 9/11” is a 20-minute VR cinematic documentary commemorating the 20th anniversary of the attacks in New York. Featuring exclusive and never-seen-before archives of the World Trade Center remastered for virtual reality, this documentary offers a unique connection with the testimony of a survivor — in the time and place of her story. By exploring Genelle’s souvenirs, this documentary offers an emotional dive into the defining moments of her life: her first days in New York, her memories of 9/11, and her life today, 20 years later as she returns to Ground Zero for the first time since 9/11.
Debate about reproductive rights is often heated. But behind every family planning decision there is a human story. Using volumetric capture technology and creative design, this film lets us see from a different perspective the emotional and complex nature behind one woman’s Choice. In this unique VR documentary viewers will meet Kristen, a young Native American woman from Austin, TX who dreams of raising a family but instead finds herself facing a painful system that forces women into dehumanizing situations just to survive.
This is a story taking place in a time of raging pandemics, and all beings are in crisis. With a magical rose, a little girl is going to travel through a city filled with viruses and indifference, just to dedicate this rose to her mother who is courageously guarding lives in the front-line hospital. During the process, she encounters cursed demonic creatures and receives help from a tribe of discriminated rats. The journey is like the worldwide anti-pandemic battle, bumpy and full of frustration, but hope is never lost.
The filmmakers of the award winning Netlix documentary, The Great Hack (2019) use mixed reality and surveillance technologies to bring to life the invisible world of data. Audiences will experience how smart devices harvest data from our devices and how this data is then used to control us and persuade us. Using a virtual smart living room, the project helps individuals visualize the pervasiveness of data collection in our private homes. With the help of collaborator, will.i.am, the audience learns how major corporations are using and profiting from our data.
Genesis embarks on an emotionally intense virtual reality journey to experience the dramatic milestones in the evolution of earth and mankind. An immersive 24 h metaphor of 4.7 billion years of evolution that reveals: We are children of galactic luck, born in the final second of eternity. As time travelers we immerse into unknown spheres. Seemingly unreal, mystical and daunting, yet full of breath-taking landscapes and creatures that truly existed before. Starting with the young, glowing earth surrounded by cosmic debris and concluding with coming come face to face with our human ancestors, catching glimpses of their achievements and our legacy.
On a regular Saturday morning in January 2018, as people in Hawai’i went about their daily routines, the entire state population received an SMS from the Hawaiʻi Emergency Management Agency: Ballistic Missile Threat Inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill. As panic took hold of the population, 1.4m people (as well as their friends and relatives across the globe) came to understand the real, growing and urgent nature of today’s threat from nuclear weapons. The threat from nuclear weapons is unimaginable—out of sight, and out of our control. This three-part virtual reality documentary makes clear the fundamental injustice of a world held hostage by nuclear weapons.
The Holocaust survivor Zalmon A. “Victor” Isserlis takes the viewer on a deeply personal VR journey through his memories of the Second World War: The trauma of the Holocaust, the trauma of war and the trauma of being forcefully uprooted from home. His story, told in his own voice, is the one of despair and hope during the most terrifying time in modern history. The experience is guided by audio recordings of Victor’s testimonies and supported by stylized visualizations of his memories that are both re-created through his recollections and reimagined through his daughter who grew up with and inherited his memories.
Lustration is a 4 part multi-strand animated series following a group of characters whose stories are mysteriously intertwined both in the real world and afterlife. As these characters’ stories unfold and intersect, we discover the lengths that some will go to in the name of love while uncovering a conspiracy so vast it has affected every facet of our existence . . . and the next.
Beatday: The Beginning – Mini VR Concert is the first VR experience of the Beatday franchise. It is a LBE multi-player experience that allows audiences to participate the concert from VR devices. Without barriers from the physical world, audiences can now be fully immersed in the fantastical universe designed by the performers. This mini VR concert includes the performance by Taiwanese indie band Amazing Show, delivering their hit song “Mark Twain”.
We grope through the stories of Ihyangjeong, a 300-year-old old house that descended from our ancestor's generation. People who are sick of modern people's homes, whose memories are fading away in a rapidly changing world, begin to mirror Ihyangjeong's memories to establish the functions of their own homes and make their own. Ihyangjeong was the home of director and it has been a historic space designated as the national folklore cultural heritage. The director, who has become an adult over the years, is building a new house.
You have been called by an alien creature named Onyx to a mythical planet on which they are living out their final days. You, and two others, are asked to help them transition from this reality to the next. But before Onyx can lay infinite wisdom at your feet, the weight of your spirit must be assessed. If found ready, you shall embark upon the journey of a lifetime, skipping among the stars, floating above the spheres, and remembering who you really are. Gumball Dreams is performed live with one actor playing multiple roles and three audience members in Virtual Reality.
The cryptological use of Native American languages as a U.S. military strategy began in France, 1918. Its use helped end two World Wars. Filmed where the battles took place, Our Worlds tells the incredible story of America’s original Code Talkers. Stationed in France in 1918, soldiers from the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma communicated tactical messages in their native language across battlefield phone lines, helping to turn the tides of the war. The piece immerses viewers in the presence of Choctaw soldiers fighting in France, presented in XR360º. Note: the use of the Choctaw Language was outlawed in the United States at the time of the war.
"She who plants a garden, plants hope." In solidarity with Breonna Taylor's family, notable artist and curator Lady PheØnix developed Breonna’s Garden: a revolutionary framework for veneration through Augmented Reality. As a sacred space, the Garden is brimming with flowers, butterflies, and a few of Breonna’s favorite things. Now, for the first time in Virtual Reality, audiences are able to fully immerse themselves in Breonna’s Garden. Hear about Breonna from her family, those who knew her best: Ms Tamika Palmer, Ju’Niyah Palmer and Kenneth Walker. Breonna’s Garden honors the life and memory of Breonna Taylor while cultivating a safe healing space for anyone to plant a message of hope for Breonna’s family or a personal message in remembrance of someone they miss.
A woman has two pairs of lips: her mouth, and her vulva. “LIPs” is an interactive virtual reality experience inviting the audience to enter a female body to awaken her desire, resulting in an immersive journey of eroticism. Using VR presentation to create an immersion of privacy, it is meant to materialize the sensory experience through interactive touches. A female body is displayed as a sexual landscape; once entering inside the audience will feel that they are trekking through a canyon and a garden. Guided audibly by ASMR, they will be aroused by neurotic orgasm, liberated by multi-dimensional and undefined eros.
A 6dof series aimed at engaging young audiences with art by creating intimate and gripping experiences focused on the stories behind some of the world’s greatest art and artists. Narrated by Cerys Matthews, this episode, “The Light in the Shadow”, explores the extraordinary story of one of today’s most celebrated Baroque artists: Artemisia Gentileschi. We follow her journey as she navigates a world where women have virtually no rights, and becomes one of Europe’s most celebrated and in-demand painters of her time. Artemisia painted herself into posterity within her own lifetime – this story is about how she rose up against the odds and continues to capture our imaginations today.
In a lawless, world overrun by roving ships and ruthless men, a girl propels herself from a life of forced prostitution, to command the largest and most successful pirate fleet in world history. A grandma narrates an extraordinary bedtime story to her granddaughter. It turns out, there is more to this tale than helping put her child to sleep. This story is Cheng I Sao's incredible real life story.
Enter a gritty, surreal, and cinematic story rooted in the emotional world of miscarriage and family. Minimum Mass is a story about love, loss, and black holes. Set in contemporary Rotorua, New Zealand and the speculative world of black holes, it is a short interactive narrative virtual reality. Minimum Mass takes place in a real-time, photorealistic computer generated story world and has been developed as an in headset experience for the Oculus Rift-S.
Through mind-bending animation, explore the limits of reality and a true story of mental health and the power of gaming. Echo (narrated by Tilda Swinton) guides you through the many realities of Goliath, a man who spent years in isolating mental health institutions but finds connection in multiplayer games. Combining heart-felt dialogue, mesmerising visuals and symbolic interactions, weave through multiple worlds to uncover Goliath's poignant story.
Gondwana is a living, breathing virtual ecosystem that awakens for 24 hours at a time. Like the rainforest itself, Gondwana is a system of possibilities. Weather, seasons, and biodiversity shift and change as users freely explore a vast map of wild rivers, and ancient trees. But a broader narrative stirs below: over the 24 hours, the rainforest procedurally degenerates, fed by climate data projections. Each showing of this online-native multiplayer event is unrepeatable and speculative: a meditation on time, change and loss in an irreplaceable ecosystem. It can be accessed in VR for tethered headsets, as a 2D desktop app for PCs, or as a non-interactive livestream
This is Hot Girl Sh*t like you’ve never experienced before… Join Megan Thee Stallion in a first-of-its-kind VR concert experience where you’ll see her in an upclose live-action ultra realistic virtual world. Travel through the newly imagined Hottieverse, hearing your favorite hits in immersive theater sound. Enter Thee Hottieverse. Experience the next stage of music.
This is a placeholder submission for a handful of projects. More details will be provided for each.
Paper Birds tells the story of Toto, a child with an exceptional talent for music. He must find his way through the darkness to bring back his sister, taken away by her shadow. Follow him as you step into a miniature toy-like town to confront his grandfather and reveal the truth about the mystery of the Paper Birds. This journey uses the senses to evoque our inner darkness, and the mystery that lies within it. The unknown that we’re often afraid to see. A story about inspiration, intuition, emotion and how these qualities are invoked by the music. Paper Birds uses hand tracking to further immerse you in the story through unique ways of interactivity.
A co-production between choreographer Alexander Whitley, director Sandra Rodriguez and Normal Studio, Future Rites is an immersive and collaborative performance experience based on the seminal ballet 'The Rite Of Spring'. Combining real-time animation and AI, it enables anyone to join in the dance. As users interact with a constantly evolving natural world, their movements and gestures decide a crucial outcome, guiding a narrative through this celebrated work of classical music around themes of ritual, nature and sacrifice. FUTURE RITES is part of the Future Art and Culture programme at SXSW produced by British Underground with the support of Arts Council England
In the cyberpunk future, a young woman visits a memory editor in an effort to suppress a dark memory of a murder she committed. However, the more she alters the memory, the more she finds herself wanting to kill again. Black Ice VR is an interactive cinematic experience which explores the dangerous power of memories and how they make up who we are...for better or worse.
Growing up as a teenager in today's world is a unique challenge to say the least. Weird Times is an honest and irreverent VR series that aims to help shed light and understanding into the often misunderstood issues teens go through on a daily basis. Season 1 transports you into the first hand perspectives of modern teenagers dealing with topics such as Depression, Coming Out, ADHD, Culture Identity and Body Shame. Through interpretive and heavily stylized art styles, each episode is crafted in its own hand-painted surreal aesthetic that's informed by the topics within.
We invite you to participate in our programme. It has been designed for you and people like you. Do not be afraid. Our programme is a simulation of what is real. But it is not real. Our staff will guide you and help you to improve your scores. Are you ready to proceed? Paradise is a 20 minute two person immersive audio experience for intimate partners. Part interactive game, part theatrical experience, audience members progress through a world of simulated scenarios that explore why we stay together or fall apart.
This exhibit showcases a single biome room from The Green Planet AR Experience running in London from Feb-Mar ‘22. It will run for five-eight minutes and four people will be able to experience it at a time. A mobile phone becomes your dynamic window into the secret kingdom of plants. Discover the world of plants on their timescale, and from their perspective. You’ll see that plants can be as aggressive, competitive and dramatic as any living thing on the planet – and how they form intriguing relationships with animals. Learn why they are so vital for the future of our planet. Inspired by the new BBC series, join David Attenborough and explore our green planet as you never have before.
Something's composition defines its very nature—an atom, a human, music. It’s also the result of an action, where the present moment is constructed by altering the past. A single wooden cube can become the unit that creates rhythm and catalyzes our actions, giving life to dormant forces, and our imagination. By manipulating the cubes on the table, Composition becomes at the same time a world, a sculpture, an instrument, and a multi-handed dance.
RADIO GHOST is a prototype developed as part of the UK-Canada Immersive Exchange. An app-based ghost-hunt that transforms Malls into fantastical spaces, and uses binaural sound & multi-player game design to encourage playful collaboration, physical activity and ethical consumption, inspired by the Japanese concept of Tsukumogami - a Shinto belief that every object has a spirit (hidden voices in the supply chain). Played in groups of 3, a team of ‘hunters’ capture the ‘ghosts’ hidden in products and broadcasts their stories via DJ Iva Taguri’s Radio Ghost. Players’ choices shape the physical journeys of other players around the mall, against an 80’s soundtrack - back where it all began.
Acorn is a prototype developed as part of the UK-Canada Immersive Exchange. Acorn AR is a form of enchantment that immerses us into the wonder of nature through connection. Players are bewitched by the simple action of planting a single acorn & experiencing the fullness of its life as it grows to an ancient Oak. Acorn is an AR experience inspired by The Promise, winner of the New York Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year by Nicola Davies & Laura Carlin.
Alone Together is a prototype developed as part of the UK-Canada Immersive Exchange. ALONE TOGETHER is the story of a fake family member meeting lonely clients by appointment. This self-generated performance combines augmented reality, artificial intelligence, and hologram production. It mixes them with theatrical storytelling and user interactions. Inspired by the concept of family rental agencies that provide fake family members to lonely people seeking companionship, Alone Together offers surprising, seemingly spontaneous narratives. Brief yet emotionally arresting, innovative yet oddly familiar, it is accessible and inclusive in ways that traditional culture sometimes fails to be.
Gloaming is a prototype developed as part of the UK-Canada Immersive Exchange. Enter an experience between light & darkness, between rave & ritual, between digital & physical realities - Gloaming, a 1 hour immersive live performance. Two groups gather on opposite sides of the world, one at dawn and one at dusk, each in a multi-sensory art installation. Making their way through the set, the audiences are given VR headsets allowing them to conjure new ways of interacting with each other, exploring virtual & physical touch. Their guide, a live motion-capture dancer, who brings the two audiences together at dawn and dusk across the globe in this multi-reality adventure in togetherness.