UNSW 3D Immersive experience screens as part of SXSW 2018
- When 9 Mar - 17 Mar 2018
The North American premiere of the 3D immersive experience Parragirls Past, Present is set to take place as part of the pioneering SXSW Conference & Festivals in Austin, Texas. The screening is part of the Virtual Cinema program at SXSW which draws tens of thousands of creatives during March each year.
Founded in 1987, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. The event, an essential destination for global professionals, features sessions, showcases, screenings, exhibitions, and a variety of networking opportunities. SXSW proves that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together.
Commissioned and first premiered at part of UNSW's Big Anxiety festival in Sydney, Parragirls Past, Present is a deeply moving immersive experience presenting former residents’ contemporary visions of Parramatta Girls Home, a punitive Australian child welfare institution closed in 1974. Unlocking contested memories of institutional ‘care’, this collaboration with media artists and Parragirls rewrites the history of Parramatta Girls Home. Over a century, children at risk held at this site were subjected to unwarranted punishment and abuse. Returning after 40 years, Parragirls seek out traces to substantiate what really happened here, moving through fear and futile confinement to resistance and solidarity.
A collboration between survivors and UNSW Art & Design researchers Parragirls Past, Present, Unlocking memories of institutional ‘care’ offers a unique perspective on the Parramatta Girls Home, a former state-controlled child welfare institution situated adjacent to the convict-era Parramatta Female Factory in western Sydney, Australia. Up until the early 1980s, ‘children at risk’ were held and subjected to unwarranted punishment and horrific abuse. The project offers a reconstructed reality, in its narrative as well as in its unique representational format. Photographic veracity is partly suspended in an uncertain and dissolute world of recollections.
With one trend in CGI to generate ever more realistic depictions, this project takes a deliberate step back and makes use of an abstract reconstructed reality, the point-cloud representation. This look can be interpreted as being compatible with how human memory operates. It is mutable, constructed and fragmented. This aesthetic sets the tone and creates the atmosphere for a sombre narrative that engages a viewer on an emotional level to ultimately promote empathy towards the affected women telling their stories.
Parragirls Past, Present. Unlocking memories of institutional ‘care’ (2017).
Alex Davies, Bonney Djuric, Lily Hibberd, Volker Kuchelmeister
Art Director and Production Design: Volker Kuchelmeister
Sound Design/Editor: Alex Davies
Narrator: Lynne Edmondson Paskovski, Gypsie Hayes, Denise Nicholas
Co-producers: Jill Bennett, Bonney Djuric, Lily Hibberd
Writer/Narrator: Bonney Djuric, Jenny McNally
Writer/Editor: Lily Hibberd
Commissioned by the Big Anxiety Festival 2017, UNSW Sydney