Image: Ilinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center
A three-part VR experience takes you on the journey of three girls who survived the Holocaust in different countries.
The Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center has unveiled three new vr films in its Virtual Reality Gallery. The VR experience “The Journey Back” was developed in collaboration with production company East City Films, and allows visitors to experience the little-known stories of three young girls who survived the Holocaust.
Three perspectives of the Holocaust in VR
The Journey Back includes three VR films that follow Rodi Glass, Marion Deichmann and Doris Fogel through their lives before, during and after the Holocaust. Each of the three characters experienced the Holocaust in a different part of the world.
In “Walk to Westerbork,” Rodi Glass travels from Amsterdam to the Westerbork transit camp and the Vittel internment camp. “Letters from Drancy” reveals a powerful mother-daughter bond during the Holocaust, and “Escape to Shanghai” follows Doris Fogel on her journey from Nazi Germany to China.
Mix of original footage and animation
Filming took place on original locations in Germany, France, the Netherlands, and China. Each story uses 360-degree video, 3D environments, motion capture and a spatial soundtrack. In addition, animated sequences are embedded to visualize the deep memories of the survivors.
The films are enriched with archival images, documents, and videos that paint a comprehensive picture of life before and during the war. After the premiere in August, the films will be shown on a monthly basis.
It is not known if “The Journey Back” will be made available to a wider audience through a release on Meta Quest 2 or SteamVR, for example. However, Tell Me, Inge, a VR experience in which a Holocaust survivor tells her story in VR, and The Last Goodbye VR are two powerful Holocaust testimonies available for home VR headsets.