‘Reframe Saudi’ Helps Share Saudi Arabia’s Incredible Story

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Saudi Gazette

Directed by Matteo Lonardi, Reframe Saudi is a Virtual Reality documentary that uses cultural narratives to explore Saudi Arabia. It gives the world a chance to delve deeper into the cultural dynamics of the Kingdom through local artists who are shaping the future and starting conversations with the world by sharing their experiences and perspectives. It features Ahmad Angawi, Dana Awartani, Rashed Al-Shashai, Ajlan Gharem, Zahra Al-Ghamdi, Ayman Yossri Daydban, Jameela Mater, Ahaad Alamoudi and Ali Mogawi working within the confines of their studios between Jeddah, Abha and Riyadh. The movie is shot around the Kingdom showcasing the stunning landscape and never-seen-before footage of rural and present-day spaces in a manner that transports one to Saudi Arabia via a VR headset. “Reframe Saudi is a VR documentary about the art scene in Saudi Arabia, showcasing nine artists and how they reflect in their environment,” Lonardi told Saudi Gazette. “I always talk about contemporary issues in society through artists specifically through VR. I have done something similar for Tehran. I worked with many artists especially Ahmed Mater who watched Reframe Tehran. I pitched the idea to him and Stephen Stapleton, and they really wanted to do it. It took us two years to do it,” he added. Visitors at Art Dubai experienced a preview of the film, with a VR headset and headphones. “It was a wonderful experience, I felt like I was with the artists and I could move around the landscape by just turning around as if I was there. The whole experience was mind-blowing and I can’t wait to watch the film,” Mona Ali, a visitor at Art Dubai told Saudi Gazette. The preview was followed by a panel discussion on VR and Contemporary Art, moderated by Marisa Mazria Katz with World VR Forum Director, Salar Sahna, VR film maker Matteo Lonardi and Saudi Artist Ahaad Alamoudi. “It took 12 days to shoot the entire footage. We are looking to launch the film in June this year,” Lonardi told Saudi Gazette. The documentary was launched at Art Dubai following the partnership between the fair and Misk Art Institute headed by Ahmed Mater. Produced by Culturunners, Reframe Saudi will be presented as part of World VR forum’s program in Tribeca in April and will be launched internationally at the World VR forum in June.


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