Fulldome in Jena
The 10th Jena Fulldome Film Festival was held from May 26-28, 2016, with the theme “Frameless Frenzy.” Its signature award is the Janus trophy, for the double-faced Roman god of beginnings and endings. The festival honors both seasoned producers as well as student works, with an emphasis on short films. The winners spanned the world with creative works ranging from artistic endeavors to science topics.
This year, the Janus awards for short films were awarded to Cernunnos (First-year Students Award), Scalarat (Creative Award), The Shadow (Performance Award), protokoll_001 (Audience Award), Aurelio (Emphasis on Emotion Award), Clockwork Ocean (Best in Science Visualization), Samskara (Special Awards Best Short Film), and Intensional Particle Dome Installation (Frameless Frenzy Award). Full-length films receiving recognition were The Secret World of Moths (Award for Use of Innovative Production Technologies) and We Are Stars (Directors Award), along with a healthy list of honorable mentions, which you can find at the festival site. Jena FullDome Festival organizers Micky Remann, Volkmar Schort, and Jürgen Hellwig announced Janus-like beginnings and endings of their own at the festival: after ten years hosting the community’s longest-enduring festival. In an announcement made at the last festival, Micky mused on the future of the event. “Ten years is a long time for a festival and we have seen so many changes in the fulldome world that we’ve asked ourselves, “what is that we’ve done?” he said. “Where are we now and what can we do in the future? Is there a future?”
The answer to that last is “yes”. Next year’s festival will be a resurrection, with the three founders still taking part, but with a new organizational structure that will promote the art, business, and future of fulldome. With funding from a foundation set up by Ernst Abbe Stiftung (the owner of the Jena Planetarium), a newly reorganized Jena Fulldome Festival will take place on May 17-20th, 2017. The foundation’s event will be open to cosponsors from around the world, and as soon as the details are finalized, the rejuvenated festival will move forward toward its future.
In addition to her role as CEO of Loch Ness Productions, Carolyn Collins Petersen is a science writer and astronomy researcher. She is acutely interested in the fulldome medium's ability to provide cinematic approaches to storytelling that engages audiences. She has more than three dozen fulldome shows to her credit, and recently narrated several shows for other producers. She has written three astronomy books, numerous online audio and video series about astronomy and space science, and was senior author for major exhibits at Griffith Observatory, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and the California Academy of Sciences. She is a contributor in astronomy and space science for Space.About.com (space.about.com).
Carolyn Collins Petersen studied education and astronomy at the University of Colorado, and earned a graduate degree in mass communications (science emphasis, and minor in telecommunications engineering) in 1996 from CU, where she also worked on a Hubble Space Telescope instrument team. She spent several years as an editor and writer at Sky Publishing Corporation before assuming a leadership role at Loch Ness Productions.She currently serves as IMERSA's Communications Coordinator and can be reached at Carolyn@IMERSA.org.