SIGGRAPH 2021 Reveals Next Frontier of Immersive Experiences

CHICAGO, July 2, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — SIGGRAPH 2021 announces its immersive programming, including one world-premiere experience, and the jury-selected award winners for both the Immersive Pavilion and VR Theater. Virtual conference live events will run 9–13 August, with content available online and on-demand from 2 August through 29 October.

“Recent innovations in both augmented and virtual reality hardware have made rich interactions possible.”

Similar to 2020, this year’s conference participants can expect to learn about the making of experiential projects through on-demand videos and live Q&A- or panel-style sessions, with many projects offering a way to participate in the experience for those with access to appropriate hardware. Spotlighting over 35 projects from more than 15 countries, 2021 content features work out of the U.S., Kenya, Ireland, Iran, and Taiwan, among others.

“My team and I are thrilled to spotlight an incredible selection of projects and offer a look at how each was created,” shared SIGGRAPH 2021 VR Theater Director Larry Bafia, of The Centre for Digital Media. “You won’t want to miss our sneak peek of the next frontier of short-form narrative through virtual reality.”

The 2021 VR Theater has selected 15 projects that complement the Immersive Pavilion’s 23, all of which were chosen by expert jurors and reviewers. A testament to how much technology — especially amid the pandemic — continues to change the ways we create, play, learn, communicate, and interact, immersive content being presented during SIGGRAPH 2021 spans everything from artistic explorations to scientific examinations of the COVID-19 virus, and will include world-premiere experience “Mementorium” from Queer Code Collective.

“Recent innovations in both augmented and virtual reality hardware have made rich interactions possible,” added SIGGRAPH 2021 Immersive Pavilion Chair Callie Holderman, of Twilio. “The content this year spans pragmatic applications for medicine, historical preservation, training, and evocative storytelling and entertainment, and will spark rich discussion about the next wave of cross-platform and co-presented immersive experiences.”

Highlights across all immersive programming include:

GRAND JURY AWARD – Immersive Pavilion
Garage: GPU Particle-based AR Content for Futuristic Experiences | Immersive Pavilion
On-demand: 2 August–29 October; Live Q&A: Thursday, 12 August, 7 am PDT
Garage is an AR project from Akatsuki Inc. based on its system for creating interactive AR content and experiences, which is capable of capturing real-world geometric and visual information and translating it into particle-based AR content. The team designed a game and several demos that show how the project provides users with futuristic AR experiences. Details.

Namoo | VR Theater
On-demand: 2 August–29 October; Production Session: Thursday, 12 August, 9 am PDT
“Namoo”, the latest project from Baobab Studios, is a narrative poem come to life as an animated VR experience that follows the journey of a man from his birth until death. “Namoo” was created entirely in VR with Oculus Quill and pushes the boundaries of what is possible in this new artform and platform for animation. Details.

Vermillion: Realistic Virtual Reality Oil Painting | Immersive Pavilion
On-demand: 2 August–29 October; Live Q&A: Tuesday, 10 August, 12:30 pm PDT
“Vermillion” is a VR oil painting simulator created by The Aviary that offers the unrivaled sense of accomplishment of creating something beautiful on canvas, without the messy living room, by bringing the full analogue joy of painting to the digital world. Details.

Replacements (Penggantian) | VR Theater
On-demand: 2 August–29 October; Special Session: Tuesday, 10 August, 7 am PDT
Diversion cinema’s “Replacements” depicts a Javanese family routinely observing their neighborhood: day after day, generation after generation, replacement after replacement. It is a VR story about roots, time, and change. Details.

Once Upon a Sea | Immersive Pavilion
On-demand: 2 August–29 October; Live Q&A: Monday, 9 August, 9 am PDT
“Once Upon a Sea” is a poetic, interactive XR documentary from Blimey, Holy City VR, and Intuitive Pictures that tells the tragic tale of the legendary Dead Sea. Through a physical exploration of the sea’s forbidden, moonlike landscapes, to intimate encounters with local characters, the user gets a rare glimpse into one of the world’s most dangerous, soon to be extinct, wonders. Details.

She | VR Theater
On-demand: 2 August–29 October; Special Session: Tuesday, 10 August, 7 am PDT
“She” is an interactive film out of the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology about a boy pursuing his gender identity. The boy got a magic lipstick that helps him to discover feminine tendencies. As the boy goes through the family’s confinement and social isolation, viewers stand with the boy’s inner self and support him to regain his self-acceptance. Details.

View a preview of the VR Theater selections on the ACM SIGGRAPH YouTube channel:

Immersive programming is open to the Ultimate and Enhanced registration levels. Learn more and register for SIGGRAPH 2021, the 48th international conference and exhibition on computer graphics and interactive techniques, at

ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, is the world’s largest educational and scientific computing society, uniting educators, researchers, and professionals to inspire dialogue, share resources, and address the field’s challenges. ACM SIGGRAPH is a special interest group within ACM that serves as an interdisciplinary community for members in research, technology, and applications in computer graphics and interactive techniques. The SIGGRAPH conference is the world’s leading annual interdisciplinary educational experience showcasing the latest in computer graphics and interactive techniques.  SIGGRAPH 2021, the 48th annual conference hosted by ACM SIGGRAPH, will take place virtually with live events 9–13 August and on-demand content available starting 2 August through 29 October. Click here for news from the conference and its partners.

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