[2017-ongoing] [2022]

[2018-ongoing] [2019]

[2017-ongoing] [2022]

[2018-ongoing] [2019]

b.1991 - IRAN, based in Amsterdam
Resident artist at Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten


Ali Eslami is an Iranian Artist based in Amsterdam. His work deals with long-term, practice-based research that builds and grows through speculative thinking and world-building.

His work engages and plays with temporal and spatial investigations of memory, human cognition, and emotions. Often results in the form of poetic engineering as journeys to seek the potential that lies in the blurred lines between the real and unreal.

His engineering background and passion for video games nurtured an obsession with cybernetics and computation and continue to build his curiosity towards the shifting roles of form and function that create virtual worlds.

He utilizes various mediums such as VR, Film, writing, Installation, and performance lectures. In 2016, his VR project won the IDFA DocLab Award for “Best Immersive Non-fiction”. and in 2020 the Golden Calf for Best Interactive at Nederlands Film Festival with fellow artist Mamali Shafahi for Nerd_Funk project.


2010-2014    Bachelor of Civil Engineering - Zanjan National University (Zanjan, Iran)

Artist in Residence

2021-23     Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, (Amsterdam. NL)
2020        Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, Guest resident (Amsterdam. NL)
2018-19     3Package Deal, Amsterdam fonds voor de kunst (Amsterdam. NL)
2016        Age of Wonderland, Baltan Laboratories (Eindhoven, NL)

Work Experience

2012-Present     Artist, Freelance
2009-2012        Senior 3D Artist - Savice Interior Architecture Co.

Selected Exhibitions

> Nerd_Funk

2022    Sonar Festival (Barcelona, SP)  -  CTM Festival (Berling, GE)  -  Melkweg Expo (Amsterdam, NL2021    Patty Morgan Gallery (Amsterdam, NL)
2020    Impossible-bodies Festival (Den Bosch, NL)  -  Nederlands Film Festival (Utrecht, NL)
        Geneva International Film Festival (Geneva, SW)
        CPH:DOX (Copenhagen, DK)  -  Ambulante Film Festival (Mexico)
        Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Opendoclab R&D
2019    IDFA Doclab (grant recipient) (Amsterdam, NL)

> Eclipse

2021    TETEM Solo Exhibition [Enschede, NL]  -  Dutch Design Awards showcase [Eindhoven, NL]
2020    IDFA Festival [Performance] (Amsterdam, NL)

> Sacred Hill

2021    Geneva International Film Festival (Geneva, SW)
2020    Meta Marathon (Dusseldorf, GE)
         Online Video Essay commissioned by IMPAKT (Essay by Jason Bahbak Mohaghegh)
2019    Museumnacht Amsterdam (Amsterdam, NL)  -  Nederlands Film Festival  (Utrecht, NL)
         Neuhaus Artistic Research, Het Nieuwe Instituut (Rotterdam, NL) 

> False Mirror

2019    The Overkill Festival (Enschede, NL)  -  Getxophoto Festival (Bilbao, SP)
        AMaze Festival (Berlin, GE)  -  Ambulante Film Festival (Mexico)
        Diversion Cinema Showcase in Galerie Cinema (Paris, FR)
2018    IDFA Doclab Spotlight (Amsterdam, NL)

> Big Air with Go (Commissioned by NIKE)

2019    VR Installation, Melt Festival (Leipzig, GE)

> DeathTolls Experience

2019    Nexus Gallery (Melbourne, Aus)|  Ambulante Film Festival (Mexico)
2018    Published online at Oculus Store | War on Screen Festival (Paris, France)
2017    Published online at Steam and Viveport  |  Global Health Film Festival (London, UK)
        Festival du Nouveau Cinéma (Montreal, CA)  |  Bergen Film Festival (Bergen, NO)  
        British Council South American Tour | Paris Virtual Film Festival (Paris. FR)
        Sheffield DocFest (Sheffield, UK)  |  Kaleidoscope VR Showcase Vol 2
        SXSW Virtual Cinema (Austin, USA)
2016    IDFA Festival (Amsterdam, NL)  |  Dutch Design Week (Eindhoven, NL)

> Snow VR

2018    WoW Masquerade 24H West (Amsterdam, NL)
2017    IndieCade Showcase at E3 Expo (Los Angeles, USA)
2016    Todaysart Festival (The Hague, NL)  -  Mutek VR Salon (Montreal, CA)


2022        Jury member of Nederlands Film Festival Digital Culture
2020-23     Program Advisor and Co-curator at STRP Festival (Eindhoven, NL)
             Program Advisor at IDFA Festival  (Amsterdam, NL)

2019        Jury member of goEast Film Festival VR Competition (Wiesbaden, GE)

2018        Jury member of IDFA Doclab’s Competition for Immersive non-fiction
            Founder member of Plurality University (U+)
            CPH:Lab participant (Copenhagen, DE)
            IDFA’s Cross-Media Forum Participant (Amsterdam, NL)
2013        Temp-Illusion Live AudioVisual Performance at TADAEX Festival (Tehran, IR)

Selected Talks / Conferences / Workshops

2021    Hogeschool van Amsterdam - Multimedia Design - Lecture (Amsterdam, NL)
        University of Applied Arts, Vienna - Lecture (Vienna, AU)
        Netherlands Film Academy - Master of Film - Lecture (Amsterdam, NL)
        MIT University Hacking XR, False Mirror Lecture (Boston, US)

2020    We Are Public Livestream, False Mirror VR Lecture (online)
        Meta Marathon, False Mirror VR Lecture (Dusseldorf, GE)
        Johns Hopkins University, False Mirror VR Lecture (New York, US)
        MoMA Museum of Modern Art - False Mirror Showcase (New York, US)
        The University of Denver, False Mirror VR Lecture (Denver, US)

2019    Eindhoven Film Festival,  False Mirror VR Lecture (Eindhoven, NL)
        Unpackaging 3Package Deal, False Mirror VR Lecture (Amsterdam, NL)
        GetxoPhoto Festival, False Mirror VR Lecture (Bilbao, ES)
        Mutek Montreal, False Mirror VR Lecture (Montreal, CA)
        Sensorium Festival, Virtual Embodiment VR Lecture (Bratislava, SL)
        A Maze Festival, Live lecture from VR, (Berlin, GE)
        Salwa Foundation, VR Workshop (Amsterdam, NL)
        The Hmm. Presentation (Amsterdam, NL)
        Artez University, ‘Behind the Net’ Workshop, (Arnhem, NL)
        Sharjah Art Foundation, Panel speaker at Sharjah Film Platform (Sharjah, UAE)

2018    Speculative Design VR Workshop, University of Applied Sciences, Master of Digital Design (Amsterdam, NL)
        IDFA Doclab, False Mirror VR Presentation (Amsterdam, NL)

2017    Tumo center for creative technologies, VR workshop (Yerevan, Armenia)
        Forum Des Images, Why Virtual Reality?! Roundtable, (Paris, FR)
        Royal College of Arts, VR Symposium (London, UK)
        Sheffield DocFest, Join The Resistance Panel (Sheffield, UK)
        Tehran ACM Siggraph, VR Production Workflow Workshop (Tehran, Iran)

2016    Artez University, VR Masterclass (3 Days) (Arnhem, NL)
        IDFA Doclab, Interactive Conference Talk (Amsterdam, NL)
        Dutch Design Week, Advanced VR Development and Design (Eindhoven, NL)
        Dutch Design Week, VR as new Medium, Workshop (Eindhoven, NL)
        STRP Scene, Introduction to VR (Eindhoven, NL)
        VPRO Medialab’s Meet the Makers (The Hague, NL)

2014    Expanded Reality Presentation, Re-Shape Tehran (Tehran, Iran)

Awards and Nominations

2021    Nomination - Dutch Design Awards
2020    Winner - Golden Calf Best Interactive
2017    Nomination - Sheffield DocFest - SXSW Film Festival
2016    Winner - IDFA Doclab’s Best Immersive non-fiction