“Our Digital Selves: My Avatar is me!” tells the story of 13 ability-diverse global citizens and their avatars as they explore their identity through artistic expression and making a home for themselves in the VR Metaverse.
Filmmaker Bernhard Drax travels from Los Angeles to rural South England to explore why a diverse group of people ranging from 24 to 92 years of age find solace and inspiration in a user-created digital wonderland that only exists inside their computers.
Drax sends his documentarian avatar Draxtor Despres into the virtual universe of Second Life as well as next generation VR platforms like High Fidelity and Sansar to find out why a 40-something disabled Chicago native feels best represented by a colorful superhero gecko but Cody LaScala - confined to a wheelchair his entire life - makes his avatar an exact replica of his physical self.
As Boellstorff and Davis finish up their 3-year study, made possible by a grant from the National Science Foundation, the film comes as a compressed visual compendium to a seemingly unlimited array of possibilities for borderless human interaction via embodied symbolism.
Unique in its narrative approach, “Our Digital Selves” weaves together physical and virtual cinematography as the protagonists’ backstories are re-enacted via real time animation [Machinima].
The film is available as download for qualifying institutions. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information