A Virtual Experience for a Real Journey
Carne y Arena (Flesh and Sand) is a virtual reality (VR) installation by Mexican film director Alejandro González Iñárritu, an immigrant himself who uses immersive technology to document U.S.-Mexico border crossings through the eyes of real immigrants. Presented by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the 7-minute, multi-narrative sequence allows viewers to experience, nearly firsthand, the challenges that refugees encounter along the perilous journey.
The installation is an example of emerging technologies being used to generate empathy and cross-cultural understanding between immigrants and a U.S. audience—a timely exchange amid much political debate about America's immigration policy.
"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," explains the LACMA exhibition description.
The video below is the trailer for Carne y Arena, which can also be found here.
CPD Faculty Fellow Robert Hernandez is another producer of immersive content documenting experiences around the U.S.-Mexico border.