VR projects that impressed Sheikh Hamdan come to Dubai
The projects will transform viewers into a tree in the Amazon rainforest.
While government leaders and members of civil society will be discussing solutions to problems posed by climate change and war, two artists will be making their case for environmental protection and peace through virtual reality at the seventh World Government Summit (WGS) that starts today.
Serbian Milica Zec and American Winslow Porter, co-founders and directors at newreality.co, are showcasing 'Tree' and 'Giant', which are virtual-reality projects that will transform viewers into a tree in the Amazon rainforest, and how it feels to be trapped in a war zone, respectively.
The Tree project premiered at the recent World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, which was attended by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai. Zec and Porter said Sheikh Hamdan watched it and invited them to attend the World Government Summit in Dubai.
"Our objective is to present a personalised approach to the problem of climate change. Through the VR experience, you will experience how to become a tree and you will witness what humans do to nature - so you take this problem like it's your own," Zec told Khaleej Times on Saturday.
"We are appealing to the hearts of the viewers. There are no texts or statistics that explain the dangers of deforestation. We don't want to tell our viewers how many trees are cut everyday. We don't just want them to know more about climate change but we want them to experience it," she underlined.
Porter added that by attending the WGS, they want to speak to the decision-makers and take concrete steps to stop climate change and promote peace.
VR to help you understand trauma of climate change and war
> A seed is given to the viewers before they begin their VR journeys
> They are transported to the Amazon rainforest, where it will rain and help transform the seedling into a sapling
> The viewer will experience the tree's growth from a seedling into its fullest form. Their arms become branches and their body the trunk
> In the middle of the night, a fire breaks out
> The viewer will feel helpless as the fire consumes the tree
> It takes viewers to an active conflict-zone
> Two parents struggle to distract their young daughter from the devastation of war by inventing a child's tale
> Set in the family's makeshift basement shelter, the parents' fairy tale intensifies as bomb-blasts draw closer and closer.
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