We are at a stage where, as experimentalists, we are a bit lost because there is not a real theory out there which says, 'you should look in this direction.' We are looking. I am looking in the dark.

Professor Elena Aprile

A meditative exploration of the scientific method and the human instinct to explore our place in the universe, Axion is an unconventional interactive documentary that allows players to explore and discover for themselves.

Featuring original interviews with diverse scientists and researchers working in the fields of dark matter and dark energy, each player’s experience is uniquely molded by the conscious and unconscious decisions they make throughout their journey.

In addition to allowing the player to consciously explore, the app can also react to the player's unconscious biofeedback, using this data both as a seed for the unique, generative environment and as a factor affecting each player's path through the material. This guarantees that no two players can have the same experience, and that even a single player will have different experiences each time they play.

By allowing a player to discover the thoughts and statements of these scientists, we hope to draw a parallel between the visual poetry and the scientific language, illuminating a creative and expressive side of the discussion that is often not showcased, or that most people outside the scientific community do not hear. Axion invites players to immerse themselves in a one of a kind voyage designed to stimulate a contemplation of matter, energy, and the scale of the cosmos.


 

We want to leave the viewer not with answers, but with a sense that it is acceptable to be uncertain - realizing that the method of science is not the ultimate source of answers, but rather a way to ask questions.

We have all reasons to believe that dark matter is real... If dark matter is a particle, it is its own anti-particle, so it's matter and antimatter at the same time. As two galaxies collide, the ordinary matter actually collides, and you see the other component, the one that interacts so little, just passing through each other...like the other one wasn't there.

Professor Martin Pohl

Creators
IVAYLO GETOV, JASMINE IDUN ISDRAKE, KYLE GUSTAFSON

A Co-Production with
LUXLOOP
Playcentric Industries & Institute

 

Scientists
PROFESSOR MARTIN POHL
DIRECTOR of the NUCLEAR and PARTICLE PHYSICS DEPARTMENT, UNIVERSITY OF GENEVA

DR. MARK WYMAN
AMES ARTHUR POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW, NYU

PROFESSOR ELENA APRILE
CO-DIRECTOR, COLUMBIA ASTROPHYSICS LABORATORY, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

DR. SARAH MILLER
CHANCELLOR’S ADVANCE FELLOW AND McCUE FELLOW, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, IRVINE

DR. JENNIFER SIEGAL-GASKINS
EINSTEIN POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW, CALTECH

DR. JASON RHODES
SCIENTISTS AT JET PROPULSION LABS; U.S. SCIENCE LEAD FOR ESA's EUCLID MISSION

DR. ALINA KIESSLING
POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW AT JET PROPULSION LABS

DR. SEAN CARROLL
SENIOR RESEARCH ASSOCIATE IN PHYSICS, CALTECH

 

Audio:
ALAIN THIBAULT
IDA LONG
IDUN

 

Thank You:
NEAL HARTMAN at CERN; OPEYEMI OLUKEMI, INGRID KOPP, and AMELIE LEENHARDT at TRIBECA FILM INSTITUTE; NATASHA RODRIGUEZ-BACCHUS (LOGO DESIGN); MACIEJ MUSZKOWSKI (PROGRAMMING HELP); ZACH CALDWELL (VIDEOGRAPHY); JEREMY UNGAR, NICK ZEIG-OWENS, and CLINT JOSEPH HANAWAY (CAMERA ASSISTANTS); JOONA KURIKKA at the CERN IDEALAB; INSTITUTION OF NEUROSCIENCE AND PHYSIOLOGY IN GOTHENBURG; EVERYBODY AT CERN, CINEGLOBE, AND TFI.

 

First Axion Prototype and Concept developed by:
RAIN ASHFORD, IVAYLO GETOV, KYLE GUSTAFSON,
JASMINE ISDRAKE, JULIAN MACIEJEWSKI, JASON WISHNOW
 

I mean, I've come to the view myself where theoretical physics is almost a sort of, kind of weird representational art form. In the sense that this gets to the heart of what theoretical physics does today faster than telling someone you're a 'scientist.'

Dr. Mark Wyman
Press

BBC World Service"CERN: Story Matter"
BBC News
 
"Filmmakers challenged
to make science compelling"


 

Screenings

Mar 19, 2014CineGlobe IFF 2014
Apr 26, 2014TFI Interactive 2014

 

How can you just face anyone and tell them that we only make up this miserable few percent of the whole matter and energy content of the universe? Of course the normal person says 'and so what?'

Professor Elena Aprile

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Get Axion

We are currently in the prototyping and development phase and have not released a publicly available app yet. If you are interested in trying out a beta version, please get in touch. Our source code is released under the MIT licence and can be found on GitHub if you are interested in compiling your own binary.

Download a PDF press kit: for screen or for print