Inarritu’s Virtual Reality: Carne Y Arena

Virtual Reality: Carne Y Arena

Alejandro G. Inarritu presents Virtually Present, Physically Invisible, a Conceptual VR Installation exploring the human conditions of immigrants and refugees in a vast physical and visual space.

Before its official opening at Fondazione Prada in Milan and several other museums around the world, “CARNE y ARENA,” will premiere at the Festival de Cannes as their first virtual reality Official Selection.

Iñárritu’s “CARNE y ARENA (Virtually present, Physically invisible),” a virtual reality installation produced and financed by Legendary Entertainment and Fondazione Prada, will be presented in a world premiere during the 70th Festival de Cannes (17-28 May 2017) – the very first VR project ever chosen for the Official Selection of the film festival – and subsequently in its extensive full version at Fondazione Prada in Milan from June until December 2017.

Based on true accounts, the superficial lines between subject and bystander are blurred and bound together, allowing individuals to walk in a vast space and thoroughly live a fragment of the refugees’ personal journeys. “CARNE y ARENA” employs the highest, never-before-used virtual technology to create a large, multi-narrative light space with human characters.

The experimental visual installation “CARNE y ARENA” is a six and half minute solo experience that reunites frequent collaborators of Alejandro G. Iñárritu and three-time Academy Award®- winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki alongside producer Mary Parent and ILMxLAB.

“During the past four years in which this project has been growing in my mind, I had the privilege of meeting and interviewing many Mexican and Central American refugees. Their life stories haunted me, so I invited some of them to collaborate with me in the project,” said four- time Academy Award-winner Iñárritu. “My intention was to experiment with VR technology to explore the human condition in an attempt to break the dictatorship of the frame—within which things are just observed—and claim the space to allow the visitor to go through a direct experience walking in the immigrants’ feet, under their skin, and into their hearts.”

As stated by Germano Celant, Fondazione Prada’s Artistic and Scientific Superintendent, “with ‘CARNE y ARENA’, Iñárritu turns the exchange between vision and experience into a process of osmosis in which the duality between the organic body and the artificial body is dissolved. A fusion of identities arises: a psychophysical unity in which, by crossing the threshold of the virtual, the human strays into the imaginary and vice versa. It is a revolution in communication in which seeing is transformed into feeling and into a physical engagement with cinema: a transition from the screen to the gaze of the human being, with a total immersion of the senses.

The inclusion of Iñárritu’s project in the Official Selection of the Festival de Cannes 2017 embodies Fondazione Prada’s experimental vocation and its long-lasting engagement towards the correlation between cinema, technology and the arts.”

With “CARNE y ARENA,” Iñárritu continues his longstanding history with the esteemed festival, having premiered his first feature film, “Amores Perros,” the Critics Week Grand Prize winner, in 2000 and subsequently presented “Babel,” for which he won the Best Director Award, in 2006, and “Biutiful” in 2010 as part of the Official Selection. Lubezki’s work has also appeared at Cannes in 2000’s “Things You Can Tell Just by Looking at Her,” which won the Un Certain Regard Prize, and in Terrence Malik’s Palme d’Or-winning “The Tree of Life” in 2011.

Fondazione Prada is an institution devoted to art and culture created by Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli. With the aim of experimenting new grounds of confrontation on visual languages, it has presented shows by international artists, philosophy conferences, research exhibitions and performing arts projects. Since 2003, its interest towards media and technology–related languages has manifested in collaborations with international institutions such as the Tribeca Film Festival and the Venice Film Festival; in artistic projects by Steve McQueen, Tobias Rehberger and Francesco Vezzoli—all of whom have subverted the rules of the filmic process or reinvented TV and cinema genres; and in the film festivals conceived by Roman Polanski and Alejandro González Iñárritu; as well as in the experimental platform and alternative film school “Belligerent Eyes”. To learn more visit:

*A select list of press will receive invitations to view the installation. Please contact Jessica Uzzan, if you are interested in seeing Carne y Arena, and I will advise if you are on the list to receive an invitation or can be added.
*No interview requests will be considered until after a journalist has seen the installation.