At La Villette, “Jam Capsule” presents five beautiful and very different immersive experiences. From Flemish painters in Japan to opera and global warming. To discover in Paris until September 12, then in the regions.
“For over 40 years …” The voice of photographer, reporter and director Yann Arthus-Bertrand resonates in the room. He alerts the viewer to the dangers of global warming, the increase in greenhouse gas emissions, the drop in biodiversity… In short, our planet is doing badly, which he explains to us for 45 minutes. In the heart of La Villette, lies this experience unlike any other. Welcome in Jam Capsule : an immersive scenographic device installed in the Grande Halle de la Villette since June 23.
A white surface of 2,500 square meters, videos, images and texts projected on the floor and walls, a spatial sound system… The project Jam Capsule was created in June 2020. “The idea behind the Jam Project is to set up an artistic collaboration in a constrained environment, explains the president of Jam Capsule, Philippe Ligot. We have made this immersive device available to artists. It’s a constant format in size, to be able to rotate each creation more easily. “
Yann Arthus-Bertrand and his capsule Legacy are not the only ones to participate in this residency of artists in movement. Tom Volf presents Maria by Callas, experience and Mystical Gardens, walk through the masterpieces of Flemish painters, the 3rd Stage of the Opéra national de Paris is behind The infinite scene and finally Pierre Goismier and Gedeon Programs created Japan, another look. For Philippe Ligot, “the difficulty was not to find artists but to find available ones who did not give up during the coronavirus”.
In Legacy, everything starts at zero hour. Projected to the ground, the minutes pass as the Earth, this rocky ball of lava, slowly takes the shape we know. On the canvases which surround them, the spectators observe magnificent videos of landscapes: glaciers, jungles, deserts… Paradise quickly turns into a nightmare with the risk of extinction of a million species. On the ground, you can read quantified information on religions, resources, pollution. If Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s words are far from new (the climate emergency), the scenographic device makes it stronger.
Change of atmosphere with Maria by Callas. Farewell to nature, welcome to the opera. Soil is used less in this capsule. Tom Volf presents archive images of the famous singer. In her old interviews, she discusses her passion for singing but also the scandal of her love affair with billionaire Aristotle Onassis who left her for Jackie Kennedy. The most moving moments are the performances of Maria Callas, during which the spectators can lie on the floor and get carried away when the singer begins Carmen. Love is a bohemian child …
“The project is very eclectic”, says Philippe Ligot. Each artist can use the space made available as they wish, the five capsules of 45 minutes each, are completely different. “We have more popular content that works well with audiences like Japan and Yann Arthus-Bertrand. But there are also more confidential capsules like the one from the Paris Opera. Some spectators can come and see Legacy for example, and stay for the other capsules out of curiosity. “ For the president of Jam Capsule, the most important thing in this immersive experience is to give food for thought. “I didn’t want something that was simply beautiful but also serious and rigorous so that the form did not take precedence over the content. ”
Jam Capsule manages to brilliantly combine content and form. The five capsules should soon travel the regions. Next April, five more will take place at La Villette. “For this edition, we put the project together in three months. We know that we can do even better”, says Philippe Ligot. See you next year to discover this new edition, which will deal, among other things, with diversity and gender equality. Waiting, Jam Capsule is in the Grande Halle de la Villette until September 12.