- ANNA IES WILLEMS & OMAR DAOU – awarded 2500 EUR seed money to develop project ‘Reality 3.0’
Reality 3.0 is an interactive web docu-series that aims to understand how technology has been influencing our everyday lives and explores how we can move towards a world where we use it consciously. As responsible citizens, are we aware of the ways in which we are using what technology has to offer? Chronicling the technological advancements from contemporary times through the present day—with many speculations about the future—3.0 is a journey that tries to understand the gradual evolution of technology’s relationship with nature: how did we get here and where are we going next? How can we use technology in ways that are responsible and conscientious towards our bodies, our minds, our social relationships, and the environment?
Zooming in on each particular user though an interactive interface—with personalized questions—and through understanding each user’s particular concerns and habits, Reality 3.0 will outline each customized version of the future for each unique audience member by the end of the documentary. What will your future hold?
I am Anna Ies Willems (23), born and raised in the south of Holland: Den Bosch. Nowadays I live in Amsterdam. I graduated as a journalist and I specialised in documentary making.
A while ago I made my first documentary: ‘Modern Nomads’, about a guy who’s living in a campervan since eight years. At the moment I have my own little story and concept company. I make stories and I am always looking for the discipline that suits the story best. I film, write, research, edit, create but I also give training; for example in how to work with Prezi. Next to that I am busy to specialise in future research. It’s my dream to make stories about the future. We live in a fast changing world and that’s something I would like to cover in stories: documentaries, events, articles or debates. I really care about questions like: How is the society and world changing? What are problems and what can be solutions?
Omar Daou is a 24 year old Masters Student at Utrecht University majoring in Gender Studies. He graduated in 2012 from the Lebanese American University with a BA in Communication Arts with an emphasis on Radio, TV, Film, and Theatre, before working for three years as an Art Director at Beirut-based creative startup Bobolink. Omar’s main goal is to bring together his research interests with aesthetics and artworks, creating art that can teach us something.
- EVA VAN ROEKEL & FLOOR DE BIE – awarded 1500 EUR seed money to develop project ‘Paper Paradise’
Imagine that you have to ‘prove’ your love in the form of documents, photos, tickets, and receipts. This is what our protagonists Dion (Dutch) and Jenny (Colombian) are doing to obtain a Dutch residence permit for Jenny. Since a few months they are following the Belgium route: they have decided to live 50 meters across the Belgian border to circumvent strict Dutch migration law. After an initial leap forward, they are now lost in incomprehensible Belgian and Dutch rules and European laws. Do they control the course of life or is it all an illusion?
Our project is an ‘immersive route’ consisting of two parts: an audio tour through Utrecht and the screening of a 30” documentary. Our immersive route wants to stimulate reflection about bizarre consequences of bureaucracy and the illusion of freedom in modern life.
The immersive audio tour leads the audience through several public spaces until they reach their final destination where the documentary will be shown. The documentary follows the Belgium route process of Dion and Jenny. The main themes are bureaucracy, alienation, and borders. With the audio tour, in couples the audience will find itself lost in a ‘bureaucratic maze’, just like the protagonists of the documentary.
Eva van Roekel graduated as Master of Science in Latin American and Caribbean Studies at Utrecht University in 2007. During her studies (BA and MA) she conducted fieldwork in Caracas, Venezuela on research topics about political conflict, poverty and stigma. Together with Sanne Rovers Eva made one documentary Servicio2 (55min) about a psychiatric hospital in the shantytowns of Caracas and the short film Nelly (10min) about the memories of a Venezuelan woman belonging to the middle class. Since 2009 Eva has been working on a PhD research project in Cultural Anthropology on transitional justice, feelings, and law in post- dictatorial Argentina. In spring 2016 she will defend her thesis at Utrecht University. In 2013 Eva co-founded DoKumento, a cultural platform that emerges from the idea that storytelling, besides an important meaning-making process, is an elementary mode to transfer knowledge across cultures and generations. Beside freelance jobs and several published academic articles and one short story, Eva teaches Bachelor students of the Department of Cultural Anthropology at Utrecht University and Master students of the Department of Political Science at the University of Amsterdam. Since 2014 she is working together with Floor de Bie on a new documentary, The Belgium Route, about migration and borders in small village in Belgium just 50 meters from Maastricht.
Floor de Bie is a freelance filmmaker with a background in journalism and anthropology. She attained a Master’s degree in Latin American Studies (2007) as well as in Journalism (2010). As a freelance filmmaker she produces short promotional and informative films for companies and universities. Apart from that she works on documentary film. In 2014, she filmed and edited the short documentary De Suridames (The Suriladies), which was shown at the Shorts Festival in Delft. At the moment she works on the feature documentary film The Belgium Route together with anthropologist Eva van Roekel. This film follows a couple that lives just across the border in Belgium to circumvent the strict migration rules in The Netherlands. They follow the ‘Belgium Route’, a migration route that is followed by quite a large number of intercultural couples. Questions I have: Which ‘other’ storytelling techniques can we use to visualise our story better? I would also like to learn more about storytelling structures.
- PIEN DEN HOLLANDER & LILLIAN DAM BRACIA – awarded 1000 EUR seed money to develop project ‘Limbo Citizen’
Our project, Limbo Citizen, is an interactive installation located in the city center of Utrecht (possibly on a busy street, for example on Neude square or Stadhuisbrug). In the medium of abstract representations placed inside a maze, the installation aims to communicate the impact of legal borders in the lives of migrants who are in lack or in want of the legal right to stay in the EU. The installation will tell the story of four different migrants: a non-EU student seeking to stay in the EU after his period of study, an undocumented migrant, an asylum seeker and an economic migrant. Our aim is to offer citizens of the world a surprising possibility to critically reflect on his/her own privileges obtained from his/her citizen/national status. This will be in the form of what we would call a ´walkthrough documentary´ where, once inside, one will symbolically experience the stories of people who find themselves stuck in a legal limbo.
My name is Pien den Hollander, I’m 24 years old and I study Communication and Multimedia Design. I’m about to start my final year and the Camera Interactiva programme is going to be a great part of my graduation project. I’ve always had a fascination for stories. Telling stories dates back to time immemorial. Mostly, they are entertaining and I think that’s the reason why they’re so powerful. Even when the message is not that interesting, the story can make it look exactly that.
In my opinion, it is regrettable that books and film still are the main carriers of stories. Wouldn’t it be more interesting when the medium that tells the story has something to do with the story itself?
How can animation be used in an unconventional way to create awareness of other people’s positions in society and how one perceives this?
Hello! My name is Lillian Dam Bracia and I am 21 years old. I am “originally” from Brazil but for more than half of my life I grew up living abroad in South Africa, Germany and now the Netherlands. At the moment, I happened to finish my liberal arts education in University College Utrecht where I completed tracks on anthropology and international relations. With the Camera Interactiva program I find a great opportunity to apply the insights I’ve acquired in high education during the past three years. Specifically I’m looking towards poststructural and postcolonial debates on issues of today’s modern society such as one of massive migration in relation to identity politics and power. How do current policies and regulations set by modern societies (for example, the Dublin Regulation by EU member states or Germany’s latest choice to accept an influx of refugees looking for asylum in the upcoming months) influence the placement of massive populations and in effect, contribute to social and historical constructed conceptions of identity of non-EU countries and its fleeing citizens? In this process, I hope to investigate how are ‘othered’ identities influencing power decisions in the lives of Europe’s non-binding citizens and as a whole, what does that inform us about the significance of ‘citizenship’ in reality and theoretical concept? By learning more about interactive media and technology through Camera Interactiva I hope to get these or at least some of these ideas effectively across in an engaging and accessible manner.
- SANDER BIEMANS & LOWI WILLEMS – project ‘Het Voorgesprek’
Our project focusses on the question how the dynamics of Dutch public debate concerning the recent reception of refugees work, and how different groups formulate different argu-ments. The project will follow four groups in their preparations leading up to a town hall meeting, where the “acceptance” of a newly build AZC (asylum seekers centre) will be dis-cussed. The groups are roughly divided between those in favor of the reception of refugees, those opposing, a group city officials organizing the town meeting, and a group of refugees. As a user you will not only experience the meeting from all these different perspectives, but importantly also the premeeting; the moments before the actual meeting where these groups come together to discuss and formulate their arguments with which they enter the actual town meeting. As such the project provides the user with a story concerning recent Dutch refugee reception and public debate, but with a focus on how the public/visible debate is also connected to the lesser-visible debates.
My name is Sander Biemans, I am a Communication and Multimedia Design student at Avans Hogeschool in Breda. At this moment I am in my graduation year and hope to graduate this February. During the minor immersive storytelling the passion I had had for telling stories grew. To amaze people and get them out of their normal world often is the the starting point of the things I make. Besides creating stories I am fascinated by new technology and new media like virtual reality (VR). This led to the question: How to design a story for VR? To explore the possibilities of storytelling in VR I am designing my own a camera rig capable of shooting film for VR. Ultimately i would like make a short film with the use of this camera and learned techniques. Question:How do you create awareness among those who never thought about citizenship and the problems that people have adjusting and feeling at home in a ‘new/different’ society?
My name is Lowi Willems, I would consider myself to be a part-time media researcher / part-time musician. Last year I completed my research master Media and Performance Studies at Utrecht University. Before that I got my bachelor’s degree Theatre-, Film-, and Televisionstudies, also at UU. Prior to this I have followed a bachelor in Fine Arts at the ArtEZ art school at Arnhem. I have always had an interest for visual storytelling – at times more practical, at times more theoretically driven. After receiving my master’s degree I have been looking for opportunities to combine both these practice based and theoretical interests. My specific interests in media studies have led me to often ask how different media filter and configure; and subsequently which subjects/bodies are featured in this process, and which are fragmented or left out altogether. As such I have academically engaged with the question of media predominantly in terms of its entanglements with biopolitics. I hope the Camera Interactive programme could help me find creative ways in which the production of knowledge can be framed in such ways that it triggers the development of new connections, to help formulate ways in which humans (and/or nonhumans) can access different configurations of citizenship. Topics I would love to involve in this process are accessibility and accountability; how do different digital media offer different points of access, and how to do justice to multiple perspectives on stories/knowledge. As a question I would like to gain insights on during the programme: how can digital storytelling facilitate in the production of new connections between/across different perspectives on topics of citizenship, and how could these connections provide tools for sustainable subject positions?
- GISELA CARRASCO-MIRO & DAAN VAN DOREMALEN – project ‘The Art of Conversation’
Over the last decades, in the Netherlands, as in the rest of Europe, notions as ‘citizenship’, ‘identity’, ‘community’ and ‘nation’ have shifted. Yet national views on citizenship influence the way in which our European societies deal with racial and ethnic diversity. The place in which these dialogues takes place across our imaginary ‘cultural boundaries’ are structured by the contested nature of culture – which ideas are listen to, discussed, adopted, or rejected and are influenced by the problems faced by individuals and groups whether the ideas offer satisfying resolutions to existing social and economic conflicts. In a time of renewed essentialism and clash of civilizations scenarios, we find urgent to ask how ‘culture’ is discussed in the Netherlands in the public domain? And more specifically, how we deal with ‘other’ cultures?
Gisela Carrasco-Miro is a Ph.D. candidate in Gender and Feminist Studies at Utrecht University (Netherlands Research School of Gender Studies). She has a master’s degree in Development Economics from the School of Oriental and African Studies (London), graduate level training in Feminist and Gender Advanced Studies (National Autonomous University of Mexico), Feminist Economics from the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College (USA) and Human Rights and Humanitarian Law from the American University, Washington College of Law (USA). Gisela’s research is interdisciplinary focusing on postcolonial theory and politics, critical development studies, indigenous knowledges, posthumanism and feminist political economy. Her research is informed by her personal history, living in different countries in Central America and Sub-Saharan Africa and expertise working with several international organizations, people’s movements and civil society organizations. Her interdisciplinary research and pluralistic practices span a range of media including video-essay, interview and text. Gisela’s work adopts the form of publications, lectures as well as collaborative interdisciplinary research projects such as the United Nations Africa Human Development Report 2015 on Women Economic Empowerment and Gender equality in Africa and the Women and local economies, territories, knowledge(s) and power in Central America. She has several publications on gender issues, feminism and local development and she is a usual collaborator of the critical thought magazine-Revista Mito.
Daan van Doremalen graduated from the Academy for Communication & User Experience (Communication & Multimedia Design at Avans Hogeschool Breda). Throughout this study he focussed on Interaction Strategy and did the minor Immersive Storytelling. During this minor he got triggered to try and remediate authentic forms of media into a new forms and perspectives. In his free time Daan is culturally active. He has been the chairman of the Student Association ‘Bold’, making a difference by organizing events and trying to arrange a sustainable platform for the students. Daan is also very passionate with theatre; he took part in several musicals such as ‘RENT’ and is now working on the musical ‘Spring Awakening’, which also has been an inspiration for his graduation project. For his graduation project Daan took a new approach on theatre and designed an immersive theatre performance, without using actors/ using silent disco techniques, in which the audience experienced a story about forbidden desires out of themselves. Camera Interactive offers a new playground to experiment with different forms of interactive storytelling, which can result into interesting perspectives on Utrecht and citizenship!