French-Indonesian illustrator and director Jonathan Hagard’s award-winning collaboration with Japanese animators is a fascinating, yet poignant experience depicting the multi-faceted modern transition and the futility of the capitalist centralized urban model.

Virtual reality (VR) transforms digital storytelling and introduces contemporary art to exciting new frontiers. The immersive experience, via head-mounted displays, headphones and sometimes hand controls, persuades our brains that we are situated elsewhere, transporting us to a new virtual location. VR is increasingly entering the 21st century modern experience. Utilized in video gaming, it is the fundamental platform of the metaverse — the interactive future of the internet. Yet, until recently, VR has been an unexplored territory within Indonesian art.

Indonesia’s first VR artwork, “Replacements”, is a 360 degree happening locating the viewer in the center of the simulation. Within 12 minutes, via stylized imagery, we transition from 1980 to 2020. The video begins in a tranquil village. A timber dwelling in a spacious front yard then gives way to a concrete family home. Adults sit casually in conversation; the gentle twitter of birds from nearby trees greets us. Our eyes scan around, identifying familiar cultural and daily items. Then, turning our heads, the village scenario and the vast blue sky unfolds. For the novice yet to experience VR, the initial isolation from the real world, except for gravitational forces, may be confronting.

Credited Source
The Jakarta Post / Richard Horstman