Good Vibes with VIVE

SXSW Special: Immersive Storytelling to Create Positive Change

April 14, 2022 Pearly Chen Season 2 Episode 7
Good Vibes with VIVE
SXSW Special: Immersive Storytelling to Create Positive Change
Show Notes

Season 2 Episode 7 Show Notes 

Using Emerging Technologies to Tell the Stories That Matter with Gabo Arora

Today’s guest is Gabo Arora, a world renowned multi-award winning immersive artist, professor, entrepreneur, and former UN diplomat who works with the most cutting-edge technologies, including virtual and augmented reality, to tell some of the most important stories of our time. His creative tech and production studio, LIGHTSHED, is based in Brooklyn, New York, and uses the power of emerging technologies and immersive storytelling to create positive social change. In this episode, Gabo joins us to talk about his latest project: Paradise, a two-person, AI-powered immersive audio experience for intimate partners in their own home that he describes as “couples therapy in the future.” Listen in as Gabo shares what drew him to extended reality (XR) as a medium and offers some insight into his films, Clouds Over Sidra and The Last Goodbye, which use VR to tell deeply impactful stories. 

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Gabo describes Paradise, which was showcased at South by Southwest 2022.
  • How he’s using immersive binaural audio to tell the story of “couples therapy in the future.
  • The mysterious force of creativity that led Gabo to explore virtual reality.
  • The story of his first project, Clouds Over Sidra, and what drew him to XR as a medium.
  • Insight into the process of creating the film in the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan.
  • Learn more about The Last Goodbye, which takes viewers inside a Nazi death camp.
  • How photogrammetry can be used for important educational purposes.
  • What Gabo means when he says “meaning is the new money” and how he continually aims to create meaning through his work.
  • Get a glimpse into the NFT project that Gabo is developing to accompany Paradise.
  • Gabo speaks candidly about the moments of self-doubt that accompany his work.
  • Combining stories with machines to enable new levels of engagement.
  • Blurring the binary between real and virtual to enhance our experience of reality.
  • Why more artists should make products in order to better understand storytelling.
  • Where you can download the Paradise app and experience it for yourself.


 “It's always the human side. It's not political. It's just shedding light on our collective tragedy of being human sometimes.” — @gaboarora [0:27:08]

 “[The Paradise NFT project is] realigning incentive structure through Web 3 that can [not only] change how people think about art, but change how people think about what [art] can do to enhance collaboration and impact.” — @gaboarora [0:34:48]

 “Even though it's coming through new technology, it's really the story that is touching people. Then, the technology is enabling new emotions or engagement with it, that is giving people new insight and perspective.” — @gaboarora [0:46:53]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Gabo Arora



The Last Goodbye

Gabo Arora on Twitter

My Dinner with Andre


Pearly Chen on Twitter