RIDM’s UXdoc Space: From the Real to the Virtual

Presented by MUTEK, the Canada Media Fund and Québec/Canada XR.

November 11, 2019
RIDM’s UXdoc Space: From the Real to the Virtual

The UXdoc Space is presented by the Canada Media Fund and Québec/Canada XR in collaboration with Bell MediaMUTEK and the Laboratoire de recherche sur les pratiques audiovisuelles documentaires (Labdoc UQAM). Raoul-Barré room of the Cinémathèque Québécoise welcomes interactive projects, installations and virtual reality creations from here and abroad, showcasing the new documentary forms.

The UXdoc Space lineup, which highlights the themes of immigration and ecology this year, is curated in collaboration with Katharina Meissner/MUTEK and Anne-Gabrielle Lebrun Harpin/Labdoc UQAM. From November 15 to 24, the public will get to discover the carefully selected projects free of charge. Each work will also feature a paid assisted navigation in the presence of the creators, moderated by members of Labdoc UQAM.

Three years after 24.24.24. (RIDM 2016), Daniel Dietzel is back with Beaver Lake, August 25 th, 2018, Ciel Variable, a video installation that brilliantly continues his exploration of multiple timelines within a single work. Presented on three screens, a cluster of pixels is accompanied by muddled sounds. Gradually, three complementary images emerge: apparently mundane shots of a summer day at Beaver Lake.

Based on a personal experience and testimonials, Homestay by Canadian Paisley Smith is a virtual reality excursion into an imaginary garden, and an exploration of the idea of cultural exchange. Starting with foreign students hosted by families, the artist gives an empathetic account of issues surrounding expectations and preconceptions held by others and the host country. Both poetic and instructive, Homestay analyses the idea of cultural exchanges.

With a short but incredibly dense video montage, Montreal-based Iranian artist Farid Yahaghi invites us to share his experience of immigrating to Canada with Limbo. By appropriating the selfie aesthetic, accompanied by diary-style texts and voiceovers connecting different times through lip-syncing, Yahaghi conveys the existential confusion of being uprooted, while inviting viewers to “press pause” to enter his experience of doubt and hope, shot by shot. A memorable autobiographical work.

Bow’t Trail is an activist webdoc that follows the career of choreographer Rhodnie Désir through the prism of African-descendant dance. Using videos shot in Brazil, Mexico, Canada, the United States and Haiti, the artist explores the history and evolution of different communities’ politically aware artistic practices. A geographical, historical and artistic voyage that prompts us to rethink our world.

Stealing Ur Feelings is an augmented reality experience that playfully, sometimes absurdly, exposes the ways in which major corporations want to use facial recognition to influence individual Internet users – and potentially all of them. While being bombarded by images, the user is stealthily analysed by software that creates an automated portrait. With this game, Noah Levenson is warning us against the unintended consequences that widespread use of the technology could yield, both for private lives and the public sphere. You might not be who you thought you were.

SwampScapes is a virtual reality experience built around footage captured deep in the Everglades, featuring several experts in the region and its remarkable biodiversity. Kim GrinfederElizabeth Miller and Juan Carlos Zaldivar present the superb 360° images, we hear voices celebrating the exceptional ecosystem and warning against human impacts on the important but delicate environment. Designed as a sensory and educational exploration, SwampScapes uses virtual reality to highlight environmental issues and encourage us to think about the connections between ecology and culture.

Hotspot combines VR and participatory documentary theatre to create an uncanny representation of migrant processing centres. Structured in three distinct parts, and inspired by real testimonials, this new type of experience, created by Patricia Bergeron, focuses on the complex work done by mediators during interviews at processing centres in Sicily. Hotspot will be presented exceptionally at the Pierre-Péladeau Center. Hotspot was a project of Atelier Grand Nord 2017, presented by SODEC. 

PAYSages sonores, produced by Trames collective, is the fifth webdoc from the RIDM’s Young Audiences program. This multidisciplinary creative project puts listening front and centre. In this interactive work, 13 students in Brigitte Roy’s French-secondlanguage class at Lucien-Pagé high school share memories of their native countries, while also exploring their new home through sounds and words. With the support of the artists of Trames collective and other contributors, the students created and assembled all the content, from writing to sound editing.

Jeunes pousses: NFB x UQAM interactive school presents Bubble that transports us to Montréal in 2050—a world where nothing has been done to keep climate change in check. The only way people can survive in the resulting hostile environment is to put their heads in a bubble. At a time when our actions impact the future of humanity, each person is now responsible for their own fate. A public presentation of the project with the team members will take place on Tuesday, November 19 at 8 p.m.

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