2001: A Space Odyssey evokes quite the sense of isolation as HAL 9000 picks off the Discovery One’s crew, then Dave Bowman has a quiet, hallucinogenic trip. Filmmaker Lydia Cambron’s dark parody explores the parallels between Kubrick’s universe and the one we’ve been living in since the pandemic started in 2020.
THE BEST Experimental
Artist Yang Yongliang created this impressive short film that combines the light seen in cities with the stars in the sky. The full piece was designed for the MGM Cotai Theater’s massive 12 x 70-meter wraparound screen, so for maximum enjoyment, you’ll want to watch this video in full screen in a darkened room.
(Flashing Lights) A woman takes a walk through a contemporary art gallery, and when she comes across an ordinary fork on display, she imagines the creative potential of the eating utensil and other ordinary objects. Optical Arts’ wild short film is packed with surreal and dynamic CG imagery. Behind the scenes here.
Photographer Christopher Dormoy created this hypnotic and indescribable montage of macro imagery using a combination of ice, oil, paint, soap, and flowers. Blow it up full screen, and you’ll feel like the temperature in your room dropped by 30 degrees by the time you’re done watching.
During the lockdown, the digital artists of Universal Everything imagined what the world might be like if society as we know it ended, and nature took back over the planet. The first of the two infinite-loop vignettes replaces highways with grass and flowers, while the second envisions an airport overgrown with greenery.
Video artist Donato “Milkyeyes” Sansone combined footage of Olympic athletes performing a variety of movements, from gymnastics to diving to track and field events, seamlessly melding together their motions so they look like one extended routine. The technique is a refinement of his earlier clip, Concatenation.
Ernest Desumbila’s and Sauvage.TV’s short film packs in a whole lot of style, fantastic cinematography, and a cryptic but intriguing series of vignettes about a future civilization where people meet their doom as they face the inevitable in their monstrous and chaotic world.
Paris filmmaker Benjamin Bardou’s experimental short is just one of a series of dreamlike visuals which explore life in a fictitious city known as Megalopolis. In this episode, an unknown intelligence examines the passengers aboard a subway car. You can view more from the series on the artist’s website or Vimeo page.
Video artist Theo Tagholm’s (aka “mustardcuffins”) experimental short film envisions an alternative version of the world, where the iconic rock structures of America’s Southwest stretch endlessly into the sky. It’s a strangely unsettling, but engrossing visual. We love how the clouds cast shadows onto the totems.
Filmmaker and composer Stuart Hilton’s son Stanley had his brain scanned for science, and his dad decided to take footage of the sliced up imaging layers, animated them, and set them to a trippy ambient soundtrack. It’s weird to think that we all have this stuff inside our heads.
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