When the summer sun’s out in Los Angeles, vacationers and Angelenos flock to movie theaters and art exhibits to cool off. sp[a]ce gallery at Ayzenberg is premiering VR films shown at festivals to the public from July 6 to September 8. Robot Remix VR will be exhibiting the films in Pasadena, which guests with an affinity for art, film, gaming, and technology won’t want to miss.
VR Is for Everyone
Sundance and Tribeca film festivals are mostly for VIP guests or those with exclusive press passes. After attending them the exhibit’s curators, Paisley Smith and Milo Talwani, decided to bring these films to the public.
“Virtual Reality is supposed to be for everyone,” says Smith in a press release. “While working with different film festivals that made space for exhibiting these amazing works, we realized these award-winning experiences were only being seen by very small, and frankly, elite, audiences. They weren’t getting out in the world the way they should.”
To expand the public’s awareness of VR as an experience but also as a new medium for film, Smith and Talwani put together Robot Remix VR. So far, Your Hands Are Feet, Gloomy Eyes, Virtual Virtual Reality, and Micro Giants will be making their public debut on headsets in Pasadena.
VR and Film to Change the World
VR has the power to wow us with 360-degree worlds, soundtracks, special effects, and interactivity. Virtual stories are so realistic we forget these experiences are made by artists and creatives. We asked the curators what their thoughts are on VR as a new medium for film and what inspires them.
Paisley Smith said:
“Immersive virtual reality films allow audiences to touch, feel and move through stories. This experience creates highly engaged, attentive audiences. I believe we can use virtual reality technology to connect more deeply with ourselves, and the world around us. The stories I tell as an artist are guided by my belief that if we are honest about our own experiences – the good, the bad, and the vulnerable – we can make a positive change in the world. The works we have selected for Robot Remix range from the political to the other worldly, inspiring both imaginative thinking and critical self-awareness.”
Milo Talwani said:
“Virtual reality is so exciting because of its immediacy – the sounds and images from the stories and worlds artists create travel directly to an audience member’s eyes and ears with no intermediary – and because it allows artists to actualize stories and worlds and creatures and feelings that never could exist in our own universe and place the audience directly inside their creations.”
After the Velvet Rope
Wired, standalone, and console VR headsets are becoming more popular because content is improving. Exclusive film showings to VIPs, celebrities, and select media are part of the mechanism of the entertainment industry. But, this exclusivity is what also keeps a chunk of the general public away from experiencing it.
“Headsets aren’t cheap (though price is improving) and technology has a steep (if rapidly diminishing) learning curve. Our aim is to make the best experiences available to everyone, not just VR enthusiasts and the wealthy,” Talwani told us.
Unlike a typical movie, these showings will last for 60-minutes and on the weekend only. Tickets will go for $25, which guarantees guests a reservation for the time of their choosing. Having been to different arcades, an hour for $25 is a great price.
Starting August 3rd, a fresh batch of immersive experiences will hit the virtual screen. Until then you can watch the films mentioned above, plus titles like Invasion! and Unceded Territories.
Out of curiosity, we asked Robot Remix VR if the films would make it to VR platforms for purchase. Although most of the VR films aren’t downloadable, Virtual Virtual Reality and Invasion! are available for purchase online.