Interactive documentary set in highrises around the world

Helen sez,
HIGHRISE/Out My Window is a brand-new interactive documentary. It features first-person stories from 13 cities internationally, with an eclectic soundtrack, exploring the experience of life in the concrete highrise - the most common built form of the last century.

Designed to be experienced online, the project launches the viewer inside a 360-degree panorama, into an almost game-like environment. Toronto-based documentary maker Katerina Cizek directed the project largely via Skype, Facebook and email, in a collaborative process with photographers, journalists, architects, researchers, activists, digital developers and artists from around the world. The credit list rivals a feature film.

The stories of Out My Window span the globe: from Latin America's largest squat in Sao Paolo to a hugely renovated post-soviet concrete suburb in the south of Prague. Durdane in Istanbul describes how her squatter highrise community came about in the eighties, as people moved from the countryside and built towers one floor at a time. John from Johannesburg talks about the phenomenon of 'highjacked buildings,' where tenants are forced to pay rent to illegal landlords even as their buildings fall to ruin. Amchok from Toronto, who escaped Chinese-controlled Tibet by walking to India, talks about how his work as music teacher and performer brought him to Canada and helps make a home in his building in Toronto.

Out My Window (Thanks, Helen!)


  1. Everything is “like” something else.

    I love that HBO project, and hadn’t seen it before. Thanks for the link!

    But it’s also pretty different from Out My Window. One’s fictional and the other’s a documentary, for starters. Out My Window also is allows for a deeper experience. Lot’s of stylistic differences.

    The statring image is pretty similar. I wouldn’t be suprised if the guy behind Out My Window saw HBO’s voyer. I wouldn’t be suprised if he came up with it independently either. It’s pretty instintual to want to see into things.

  2. Hi imogen and ADavies

    kat here, director of HIGHRISE/Out My Window. We are definitely giving nods to HBO-Voyeur, to David Hockney (the collage photographer) and to a bunch of other influences/inspirations on our work… we see it much like contemporary filmmakers giving cinematic nods (or tributes) in their work to legends of film, like hitchcock, fellini, godard etc. etc so thanks for noticing!

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