• digital games

is a multi-award winning production company based in Melbourne, Australia that develops factual and scripted content with a focus on VR.

In 2015 they released the feature documentary GameLoading: the Rise of the Indies that follows video game developers creating deeply personal games. Their VR documentaries RONE and Empire have screened at Cannes, SXSW, The New York Film Festival and more. RONE won the award for Best VR FIlm from Screen Producers Australia, the New York Independent Film Festival and Future Film Festival.

The project

The next wave of VR has begun. Social VR is the ability for multiple visitors to share the same experience at the same time. Theatre makers can mix live performance with audiences in headsets, VR filmmakers can screen to many users at once, and artists can create virtual galleries of their work with users from around the world exploring and interacting at the same time. StudioBento aims to explore the potential social VR and its applications for our own projects and the arts sector. Support from the Creator’s Fund will allow us to undertake a period of intensive creative research.

What does being awarded a Creators Fund grant mean to you?

Being a recipient of the Creator’s Fund is a huge honour for us. Instead of scrambling to do our creative work in between commercial jobs or working specifically on one project we will have the time and space to research, experiment, step back and think about our work.

How important is 'time' to you, as an artist/creative professional?

Time is essential to us as creatives. We need time to daydream, play and iterate. This can be in short supply on commercial jobs, where time is money, and on our personal projects where we are trying to work with low budgets and tight timeframes. With the assistance of the Creators Fund we will have the luxury of time to experiment and make mistakes, which are invaluable for innovation.

What are you most looking forward to over the months ahead?

We are really looking forward to having the space to research and experiment that in turn will open up new areas of creativity. Social VR for a large audience is an undiscovered country and no one knows how new and traditional creative practices will blossom. Traditional social media has come a long way since the early days of the internet and similarly social VR will explode in ways unknown.

Where would like to see yourself at the end of this process? How do you anticipate your career will develop as a result?

By the end of the process we aim to have a strong grip on the current state of social VR and where the space is heading. With VR headsets becoming more and more ubiquitous there will be opportunities for creatives to capture audiences in new and unique ways. Getting a headstart in social VR will allow us to discover new audiences with fresh ways to capture their hearts and minds.