Gondwana at Acmi

Thu 18th August, 2022 – Sat 20th August, 2022
Swinburne Studio, Acmi
Fed Square, Melbourne
Price: Free
Fresh from Sundance and SXSW, this interactive installation runs for a meditative 48 hours. The stunning digital rainforest is deteriorating – but as more audience members participate, the environment comes back to life.

In 2019, Acmi was open for 24 hours each Thursday with round-the-clock screenings of Christian Marclay’s groundbreaking 24-hour installation The Clock, which sat somewhere between art and cinema. Now another large-scale, ultra-long screening is keeping the iconic museum open – for 48 straight hours.

Showing as part of Melbourne International Film Festival, Gondwana is an interactive virtual-reality installation based on more than 100 years of data from the Daintree in Far North Queensland, considered the second most irreplaceable natural World Heritage site, and which has a thriving ecosystem that’s threatened by the climate crisis.

Audiences can interact with the hyper-detailed installation, with lush ancient trees, rare animal species and vibrant flora. But every 14 minutes, the ecosystem jumps forward one year – heading towards what scientists expect the Daintree to be like in 2090. The more audiences interact with Gondwana, the more resilient the environment becomes: an obvious metaphor for climate action.

The installation starts at 12pm on August 18. The projection room is free to enter with no time limit, and booking a free ticket gives you 20 minutes in the VR headset. Gondwana can also be streamed at home if you have a Steam VR-compatible headset.