Crédits photos : La Biennale
From 2 to 12 September, satellite exhibitions will be held around the world in parallel with the Venice Mostra. Works from the VR section of the Venice Biennale are presented at the Centrequatre-Paris and the PHI Centre in Montreal, Canada.
For 10 days, actors and directors brighten up the streets of Venice during the Mostra, one of the biggest film festivals in the world. Since 2017, virtual reality has been a part of this exceptional annual event. Venice Virtual Reality has been presenting a dozen digital works every year for the past 3 years.
VR works exhibited in Paris and Montreal
And 2020 was not going to escape the rule! Despite the health crisis, the Mostra was held and the VR programme was maintained. However, it was modified slightly to comply with the rules. For the occasion, a virtual world was created thanks to VRChat to explore the universe of the Venice festival. This approach, even if necessary, made it possible to open this festival to a larger number of people around the world.
Indeed, for this 4th edition, the VR section of the Venice festival has relocated to a dozen different locations. Venice VR Expanded 2020 are satellite events set up in Paris and Montreal. Exhibitions are held at the 104 and at the PHI Centre. There, the public can access and test digital artworks.
A selection of multi-awarded works
Among the works presented, we have selected, supported by Floréal Films, a French production company: The Hangman at Home and Minimum Mass. The first, coming out of the minds of Michelle and Uri Kranot, has already won several awards. The second received the Cristal for best virtual reality work at the Annecy Festival.
Floréal Films is delighted to be able to present these works in such a prestigious venue, feeling strengthened in its editorial line and in the trust it has placed in the authors it has accompanied since its creation.Avi Amar, producer and founder of Floréal Films
“What does the hangman think about when he goes home at night from work?”
The Hangman at Home – VR, which premiered at the Venice Festival, is an immersive experience that explores the themes of participation and awareness of self and others. This story is not about executions but rather about the bonds that link the spectator, the witness and the accomplice. The Hangman at Home – VR raises the question of everyone’s responsibility.
“The Hangman at Home – VR presents a poetic and captivating environment that transcends its medium, making users question the consequences of their actions and inactions“. The experience is based on the eponymous poem by Carl Sandburg. It resulted in a 14-minute short film, available in 2021.
“Love, grief and black holes”
Nominated at the next edition of the NewImages Festival, Minimum Mass takes place both in New Zealand today and in the hypothetical world of black holes. The experience tells the story of a couple who go through a series of miscarriages and end up believing that their children are born in another dimension.
Minimum Mass is an interactive virtual reality experience. The two creators, Raqi Syed and Areito Echevarria, are both researchers and artists specialising in special effects. Their work has been admired on major American productions such as Avatar, The Hobbit and Planet of the Apes. “The project draws its inspiration from genre cinema, the creators have really used VR to enhance the narrative.“
Floréal Films is eager to present these two VR works at the Venice Film Festival. Since its creation in 2014, the French production company has been committed to discovering and supporting talents with a unique perspective. The producers are interested in both cinema and immersive experiences, opening the way to new horizons of distribution.
The Hangman at Home and Minimum Mass are to be discovered at 104 in Paris until September 10th. For those who missed the exhibition, all the works of Venice VR Expanded 2020 can be found and experienced online.
EDIT : We are very happy to hear that The Hangman at Home received the Grand Jury Prize for Best VR Immersive Work at the 77th edition of the Venice Film Festival. Congratulations to the creators, Michelle and Uri Kranot, and the producers from Floreal Films.