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still from Symbiosis (Polymorf, NL 2021)

Symbiosis

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Marcel van Brakel & Mark Meeuwenoord / NL, 2021 / 30 min.

Inspired by the work of science historian and philosopher Donna Haraway, author of A Cyborg Manifesto, this virtual reality experience for multiple users and multiple senses transports you to about 200 years in the future.

poster Symbiosis (Polymorf, NL 2021)

On the ruins of the Anthropocene, humanity has made way for a rich biotope teeming with mixed life-forms: human, animal, machine hybrids; artificially created biochemical life-forms, genetically manipulated creatures, chemical robots, and autonomous artificial intelligence. There is no competition, only symbiosis. This is a shared habitat, and all the resources, bodies, and information that it contains are also shared.

In this performative VR experience, each "player" becomes one of the various creatures: a fusion of either human and animal, or human and technology. To complete their symbiosis, the virtual world they are presented with is augmented with scent and physical aids. How does hybridization with other creatures affect us as humans? And what philosophical, legal, emotional, or physical consequences might this fusion have?

Presented by Eye and IDFA DocLab in collaboration with STRP. Symbiosis is designed and produced by Polymorf in collaboration with Studio Biarritz.

Please note: the VR will be supplemented with a suit that you put on, certain scents, and certain snacks that you will be fed during the VR experience at specific times.

  • We advise people who are more than 20 weeks pregnant not to participate in this VR experience due to the use of oxytocin.
  • Do you have a food allergy? Please inform the host upon arrival. Consumptions are vegan but may contain traces of nuts.
  • VR can have side effects. Read more on virtual reality sickness.

Details

Director

Marcel van Brakel & Mark Meeuwenoord

Production year

2021

Country

NL

Length

30 min.

Language

English

Part of

Xtended

Virtual Reality productions are an increasingly important element of the contemporary film experience. Eye has created a new programme, Xtended, to focus on VR. In Xtended, you’re not confronted with the flat surface of a film screen. You move around virtually in 3D through a designed space that surrounds and immerses you on all sides.

Learn more
still from Eurydice, a Descent into Infinity (Celine Daemen, NL 2022)

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Why in Eye

Eye and IDFA DocLab closely follow the latest forms of storytelling involving digital and interactive techniques.

Anna Abrahams
programmeur Eye

Xtended: Symbiosis (VR, Polymorf, NL 2021) © Tibor Dieters
Xtended: Symbiosis (VR, Polymorf, NL 2021) © Tibor Dieters
Xtended: Symbiosis (VR, Polymorf, NL 2021) © Tibor Dieters

Special Jury Award for Creative Technology

This award celebrates the courage, skill, and craft of makers who push the boundaries across disciplines and technologies. There is no better way to describe the evident creative process and resulting experience we give this prize to. The creators take us to all corners of their world, asking us to explore the role of all your senses in a story. This combination of design, engineering, audiovisuality, and multi-sensoriality surely plays an integral role in the future of immersive experience.

Read more about virtual reality in Eye

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