December 13, 2016, Morning Session

September 55 by Cagri Zaman, Nil Tuzcu, and Deniz Tortum

September 55 is a 10-minute virtual-reality documentary of the Istanbul Pogrom, a government-initiated organized attack on the minorities of Istanbul on September6-7, 1955. This interactive installation places the viewer in a reconstructed photography studio in the midst of the pogrom, allowing one to witness the events from the perspective of a local shop-owner.

Drawing on the photographic archive of Maryam Sahinyan (1911-1996) and Osep Minasoglu (1929-2013), Armenian photographers who lived in Istanbul at the time, the installation materializes an extinct space. The wall in the virtual studio that exhibits Sahinyan’s photos is transformed into a documentation of the raids and their aftermath in the physical space; by overlapping the layouts of the two spaces the project experiments with the transition from a virtual to physical experience.

The experience of the space induced by participating in the mundane activities of the photography studio aims to generate unique historical narratives that are reproduced and enacted by the viewer.

 

December 13, 2016, Afternoon (Public) Session

#Mickey directed by Betzabé García and designed by Gibrann Morgado

#Mickey is a multi-platform project, that is conformed by a linear documentary that makes an intersection within an interactive app of AR and WebVR technologies. It tells the story of Mickey, a gender fluid Youtube celebrity from Sinaloa, Mexico. Mickey found in social media a platform where he can explore his sexual identity and deal with the deep homophobia of his environment.

Mickey’s story is about the perpetual search for identity in a globalized world saturated with information and how we chose to represent and construct ourselves. When he was 11 years old, he started to explore his sexuality and expressed it in different ways. He began to record himself with webcams and old cell phones, building an impressive intimate video catalog. He shocked his catholic school by going to class with makeup and a sexy outfit, scandalizing the priests as well as the fellow students. Shortly after, Mickey uploaded his first YouTube video, titled “What to wear to school?” and began to construct his online “Mickey” character.

Mickey started to gather followers with his quirky, provocative, upbeat videos, but his online figure contrasted with his personal life. He went through eating disorders, cut himself and had constant fights with his parents, resulting in him burning down his house. After several years gaining local notoriety, Mickey won the Miss Sinaloa Gay Pageant, the biggest in México. After that he moved to Mexico City and became an online celebrity. It took Mickey a lot of work to gain respect and admiration, but now he is fighting a new identity crisis: a conflict between his online persona and his real self.

The film will be a mashup of different formats which will include videos from his personal archive, short fictions, digital collages, web punk art, memes and animations. Texts will frequently appear onscreen, as if Mickey was the narrator writing the words. The film will pay tribute to the Internet era and its oversaturation of information as well as its plurality and diversity.

Through a multi-format documentary, we hope to at least open and push the conversation on gender identity related issues in Mexico, a country that is ranked second in the world in terms of homophobic hate crimes, partnering with organizations to encourage concrete social engagement.