Another day in a runner’s life. Another session on his Pro-Form 410 trainer. He wakes up, puts on his bathrobe, his headset and goes for his usual run. Today, he runs through an empty shopping mall against hundred versions of himself. Seeking the contentment that comes with winning, he pushes himself to the point of exhaustion and achieves the daily aim.
Pro-Form 410 Trainer is a multidisciplinary exploration of the relation between human nature and technology. It is perceiving the latter as a tool extending and altering the human condition. Tying together virtual reality and live performance, this piece addresses how technology is replacing and affecting the physical world. The nudity of the protagonist, Jake, represents the dichotomy between body cult, while at the same time neglecting the reality. Jake, an ordinary young man, disregards the social norm against nudity as soon as he puts on his VR headset. His gesture signifies technology’s capability to dominate us human beings while his point of view projected on a wide screen reflects the intimate experience we formed with digital media. Using body as a cult symbol, Pro-Form 410 Trainer channels our competitive human nature and contemplates our motivation to exercise. It investigates how we value our own body that ultimately raises questions about beauty ideals in our society.
Created by Kimberly Lin, Fanni Fazakas, Manuela Romero, Esther Manon Siddiquie. Starring Jacob Robert.
Pro-Form 410 Trainer was presented at the IAC Building Ground Floor Lobby Video Wall in 2018. Animation and visual effects were developed using Unreal Engine, Maya, Motion Capture, MotionBuilder, Mixamo, After Effects and a 3D scan of Jacob Robert through LaGuardia Studio.
Animation & Visual Effects: Kimberly Lin & Fanni Fazakas
Dramaturgy: Manuela Romero
Movement: Esther Manon Siddiquie
Performance: Jacob Robert
Sound Design: Rumex
Special Thanks: Todd Bryant, Taylor L Absher, Matt Romein, Jonathan Turner, Mimi Yin and Daniel Benyi.