9th Berlin Biennale Berlin, 2016 Client — Jon Rafman Studios Virtual Reality experience, 4:12min Oculus Rift
Contributors: Audio by Andrew Alain. Special thanks to Paul Fleming
In the summer of 2016, Jon Rafman and I co-directed a site-specific VR work for the 9th Berlin Biennale. The work was to be situated on the balcony of the Akademie der Kunst in Berlin, overlooking the historical Pariser Platz. One main important component for the work was to replicate the in-situ surroundings of the installation, in true scale. The installation would also feature four (4) sculptures by Jon Rafman.
As described in the Berlin Art Link by Alison Hugill, "The virtual experience begins in almost the exact setting where we find ourselves, overlooking Brandenburg Gate, but without the usual flow of tourists. Suddenly, the nearby sculptures of cannibalistic hybrid animals come to life and the balcony begins to crumble beneath our feet. This anxiety-inducing work might be the most effective one in the show, tapping into an imagined future where everything is similar to the present but terrifyingly other. The piece embodies the proposed premise of the Biennale, but succeeds where many other contributions merely reflect the present back to us, ironically or apathetically." Klaus Kiesenbach, Director of MoMA PS1, says of the work: "Such a strong statement it should be kept for the next two years here in this venue."