Unpacking Virtual Reality at Cinedans VRLab
Telling a story is not an easy task as a creator: allowing others to enter into your world, to feel what you feel. The medium of video has played a crucial role in this vulnerable exchange, because it allows the display of multiple perspectives and makes you see through someone else’s eyes. But that seems to have reached a turning point, a new way of sharing experiences has come into being, more immersive and even more groundbreaking.
Virtual Reality is a computer generated virtual environment that allows you to experience a different sense of physicality. Used at first in military and pilots training, now this technology is becoming widely available, offering creators and storytellers a chance to expand their communication possibilities.
Its growing popularity stems from the immersive capacity, while its possible future developments has raised concerns and boosted the imagination of many. Some fear this new technology is the first step towards a dystopian future, where we will ultimately be disconnected completely from reality to be continuously immersed in a virtual world; others praise VR’s ability for its capacity to stimulate empathy. Indeed the United Nations has already used this technology to shed light on crucial issues such as the refugees crisis.
However it may be, at Cinedans FEST we are excited to investigate VR and how it brings bodies, physical sensations and audio-visual storytelling together in innovative ways. VR fosters our imagination towards different questions: how can we use this technology in ethical ways? Can we make space for the other senses as well? What can VR teach us about our bodies?
For this and many other reasons Cinedans LAB and BeamLab continue to host the Cinedans VRLab. Starting on 5 March Cinedans LAB and BeamLab are presenting the VRLab Presentations at Playgrounds in A Lab, where participants will be researching the value and meaning of Virtual Reality in the context of dance and movement.
Participants of the VRLab
Sacha Polak (filmmaker)
Timo Geschwill (video artist)
Felix van Cleeff (filmmaker) & Fabienne Vegt (dance dramaturge)
Marjolein Vogels (dancer / choreographer) & Carlos Vasquez (filmmaker)
During the preparations, Cinedans LAB invites different VR experts to join the participants and share their knowledge of the field during the lunch break. Cinedans visitors can join these lectures for free! Please register via firstname.lastname@example.org.
6 March // 13:30 // Anna Abrahams (curator Eye Xtended)
7 March // 13:30 // Harry Schreurs (VRAcademie of NFTA)
8 March // 11:30 // Anton Eliëns (professor creative technology and new media, VU & UT)
During the weekend at Cinedans FEST (9 & 10 March // 15:00 & 17:00), we invite the public to join the VRLab Presentations and experience the findings and developments of the participants firsthand.
An additional part of the VRLab is the presentation of Momentum: A triptych wherein every film a couple of a different age – between 20 to 70 years – is shown.