Premiered at IDFA Festival – Nov 2019


‘nerd_funk’ is a digital identity existing on Instagram, following the contemporary digital culture. In this Chapter based VR Installation, Users will explore the new reality that emerged out of social media.


In the current climate of the Internet  we have reached an irreversible state in our social life and   inherently the way we think and comprehend our reality. It’s a situation we have all dived into, floating   and yet struggling to find ourselves in it. To investigate this phenomenon and allow others to   investigate it with us, we decided to create a virtual identity called nerd_funk, a collective formed by its   artists (Ali and Mamali) which exists on Instagram and follows a portion of contemporary digital culture. 
 Through the lens of this profile, the user will set out on a journey that represents an archive of collected   moments and stories shared by others, bringing the user into an interactive journey composed and   directed on the basis of nerd_funk‘s Instagram stories feed. 
 The experience will be a confrontation of the user with different sets of curated social media content,   which transforms participants between the  chaos of information and order . By providing an alternate   hyper-reality, we attempt to compare and thus better perceive our current state of existence in social   media. A dynamic that attempts to represent a kaleidoscopic portrait of the present that can provide an   alternative  perspective on the reality of ourselves and our societies. 

> Chapter 01 – #PostBody 


The arrival in our lives of new-technology devices such as the smartphone has led us to see, use, and extend our bodies in totally new ways.  The first chapter focuses on how VR gives us a new experience, implying new and quite different ergonomics. It allows the visitor to explore the way VR breaks down real-world limitations and offers new forms of enjoyment,   demonstrating and exploiting our body’s ability to adapt to new complexities, and to develop and practise the new skills needed to navigate the VR environment. The experience will help visitors to have a new consciousness of their own body and physical and mental capacities. 


After emerging from a dense thicket, phone in hand, the visitor’s virtual path meanders through a cavern-like space with living walls presenting body parts in bizarre, disorienting juxtapositions. The walls have random holes through which the visitor discovers videos collected from Instagram, referring to the post-body age from diverse viewpoints: biotechnology, animatronics, life sciences, performance art… The virtual phone in the user’s hand reproduces, as they advance, the content they are investigating. A tunnel lined with a hallucinogenic array of selfies and avatars, modified with filters, represents new ways of presenting the self. This slowly emerges into a dystopian wilderness, under the stars, with a multi-screen performance referencing the self-destructive dangers of new technologies.

> Chapter 02 – #TechnoParty

The idea of this space is to overwhelm the visitor with the beauty and power of technology’s impact (sound, light…) on   our senses, but also see how and why we are drawn to potentially self-destructive artificial stimulation. 


 A beautifully designed, spherical, virtual room equipped with high-tech sound and light will offer a total,   transformative sensory experience, inspired by and expanding on the experience of techno-parties, music festivals, concerts…   where the combination of sound, light and movement makes up an immersive and addictive package, pushing to physical and   mental limits through an escalating kaleidoscope of successive videos, at first carefully synchronised but eventually losing   control,  spiraling into sheer noise.
 For the visitor, these Instagram-sourced videos are experienced like a performance that becomes increasingly intense and,   eventually, overwhelming. 

> Chapter 03 – #NewNature        In-Production

> Chapter 04 – #CyberIdentities     Pre-Production

> Chapter 03 – #AugmentedCity     Pre-Production



By Ali Eslami and Mamali Shafahi
Music and Sound – Shahin Entezami
Technical Assistant – Arnaud Schmitt
3D Artist – Guillaume Roux / Fishflight Entertainment
Animation and Rigging – Fishflight Entertainment
Early Concept developement at CPH:Lab
Powered by Unreal Engine

Supported By

Nederlands Film Fond
IDFA Doclab R&D Grant
Stimulering Fonds NL
Mondrian Fonds
Amsterdam Fonds voor de Kunst


IDFA Festival – Amsterdam [Nov 2019]
Vancouver Biennale – Vancouver [Nov 2019]
CPH:Dox – Copenhagen [March 2020]
Ambulante Film Festival – Mexico [April 2020]
Nederlands Film Festival – Utrecht [Sep 2020]
Impossible-Bodies – Den Bosch [Oct 2020]

Voices of VR Podcast Interview
Impossible-Bodies Presentation
Vancouver Biennale Presentation
Golden Calf – Best Interactive Award


Best Interactive Award

Winner of Golden Calf at Dutch Film Festival 2020