KEY CREATORS Thomas Pons, Landia Egal
PRODUCTION Tiny Planets, in co-production with Novelab and DVgroup
World Premiere in Official Competition at the 75th Venice Biennale (VR) in 2018
Umami is an immersive VR experience in which the user assumes the role of a man reliving his childhood memories through a series of dishes at a Japanese restaurant.
Each taste – the sweet, the sour, the salty and the “umami” – the savoury – adds a piece to the puzzle, conjuring memory after memory to tell the full story.
It is the phenomenon known as the “Madeleine de Proust” – plunging into the past through taste or smell, as the author Marcel Proust describes childhood memories triggered by a crumb of cake.
Where is the man and why is he there? What does the interaction with characters arriving with each morsel mean?
Users build the links between the past and the present, with dreams and memories guiding them towards the startling reveal.
This meal leaves an aftertaste that lasts.