The most significant VR works produced in 2021 will be presented in competition for the Golden Yusr Immersive Award, which includes a $10,000 prize.
Red Sea Immersive, the programming strand of the Red Sea International Film Festival, has announced its 21-strong programme of virtual reality experiences, which will run from December 7-15 at Jeddah’s new creative complex, Hayy Jameel.
The programme will introduce era-defining immersive storytelling experiences to audiences in Jeddah, while also serving as an inspiration and catalyst to future immersive content creators and studios from the region. Thirteen of the most significant VR works produced in 2021 will be presented in competition for the Golden Yusr Immersive Award, which will include a cash prize of $10,000 with eight projects presented out-of-competition. The programme is curated by Liz Rosenthal, curator of Venice VR at the Venice International Film Festival.
Red Sea Immersive will be adjudicated by an all-female jury of three leading international artists. The jury will be presided over by American avant-garde artist Laurie Anderson, who will be joined by BAFTA-winning director Victoria Mapplebeck and one of the first Saudi Arabian street artists, Sarah Mohanna Al Abdali.
Edouard Waintrop, Artistic Director of the RedSeaIFF, said: “There is something truly special about the experiences in Red Sea Immersive. It is an art that is so complimentary of the main Festival programme, but also stands independently as a ground-breaking and boundary-pushing selection of work. It is an honour to be able to host this curation, and we are excited to see the lasting impact that Red Sea Immersive has on the Saudi art, film, and technology industries.”
Liz Rosenthal, the curator of Red Sea Immersive, added: “The selection in Red Sea Immersive is truly one of the most exciting presentations of virtual experiences to have graced the festival circuit to date. To have this presentation in such a dynamic new venue such as the Hayy Jameel, and in Saudi Arabia where there is such a burgeoning, young art scene, is such an exciting frontier for this genre of work. I am also excited to see the impact this has on the wider VR industry, especially in the Arab region.”
The 13 immersive storytelling experiences being presented in the competition are Anandala, End of Night, Genesis, Glimpse, Golia
The inaugural edition of the Red Sea International Film Festival will run in Jeddah from December 6-15.