Solarpunk fantasy comes to Hollywood

Posted on October 23, 2022Comments Off on Solarpunk fantasy comes to Hollywood

Here’s an interesting movie, premiered at the Tate Modern earlier this month:

Mika Rottenberg and Mahyad Tousi: REMOTE | Tate Modern

It’s a solarpunk fantasy, both familiar and strange, in which a woman discovers an anomaly in the virtual world that sends her on a quest toward a more genuine form of connection

TOUSI: We love the solarpunk aesthetic. Both aesthetically, from a design perspective, and narratively. So we knew we wanted this future to be a solarpunk future. You know, she’s got the herbs she puts over her omelet at the beginning while drones are trafficking outside her window. And that she can harvest her own vegetables to make food and then the packaging — I mean it’s easy to write; it was amazing that they could build it.

VON OLDERSHAUSEN: What did they make the packaging out of?

TOUSI: Rice paper. Amazing, right? The other component of this solarpunk aesthetic is that there are old things. I think there’s this tendency to want to make the future look futuristic where everything is unfamiliar. But she has a GE fan and it’s like the way we live now. We understand waste is not good so how do you actually reincorporate the old things? So it was all about thinking about all those things.

VON OLDERSHAUSEN: There’s a retro element to the imagined future which makes it feel, like, really tactile and satisfying.

“What’s Happening in Iran is Not a Local Story”: Meet Filmmaker Mahyad Tousi – Interview Magazine

With more from the Hollywood Reporter this week:

‘United States of Al’ producer Mahyad Tousi on his post-pandemic directorial debut ‘Remote,’ Why the world needs to get behind  the “Rallying Cry” of the Iranian Protests…

Co-directed with Mika Rottenberg, the film — a uniquely told, lockdown-inspired story set in a near-future world — first premiered in modern art museums before screening at the New York Film Festival.

The colorful, thought-provoking drama follows Unoaku, an expat architect living a solitary existence in a wildly colorful “solar punk” apartment in Kuala Lumpur, where one of her many daily rituals involves watching the online show of a popular South Korean dog-groomer

Unoaku lives in what is described as a “solar punk apartment.” What is one of those?

Solar punk is an aesthetic that I’ve loved for a long time. It’s both a design aesthetic and a story and narrative aesthetic. And also an architectural aesthetic, and this sort of idea of imagining a future of design or architecture, which exists already in some ways, where structures are created with a more symbiotic connection with nature. So for instance buildings that are green on the exterior and have hydroponics farm systems in the middle of them, that’s a solar punk aesthetic. It’s a very exciting way of thinking about the future, so yeah, solar punk was a big influence on the design of that apartment. She has her own garden and plants, and it’s peppered with elements that sort of hint at a future that’s neither dystopian nor utopian, but it has some hints of positivity.

‘United States of Al’ Producer Mahyad Tousi on Post-Pandemic Directorial Debut ‘Remote’ – The Hollywood Reporter


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