Ama (Film)

Immersive experience

‘A remix of nature – If nature could dream, this is what it’ll look like.’ New media arts collective Babekühl and Sydney music producer Phondupe team up to take the viewers on a mind-bending experience though a psychedelic dreamscape.


Ama @ Vivid Sydney 2023


What do the dreams of nature look like?

Ama is a mesmerising 8 Minute journey through an uncanny, extra-ordinary landscape, inviting viewers to experience and draw from the unseen energy that lies within the timeless, liminal space where land and ocean meet. The result is a piece of art that stands as a form of healing, or catharsis, in and of itself. A surrealist abstract video work that is mirroring the convergence of human consciousness and environmental awareness.

In major cities, there exists a disconnect between humans and nature. We speak of needing to “spend time in nature”, not recognising that we are nature. Our relationship with it is symbiotic – yet increasingly disparate. But what if our experiences were shared? As the natural environment bleeds, so do we. So how might we heal together?


Image C/o Destination NSW

AMA is a psychedelic meditation on the natural environment, dubbed as “visual medicine”. Submerged in sight and sound; Participants step into a psychedelic 360° dreamscape captured via full spectrum technology and explore the deep and darkest secrets of the natural world, accompanied by an electronic ambient soundscape.

Housed in a purpose build space at ‘The Cutaway’ in Barangaroo, the work spaned five enormous screens (Four walls and floor) each wall approx. 25 metres long and 6 meters high.

Screening nightly from 6-11pm between May 26 and June 17, 2023. Ama’s Vivid debut was an overwhelming successes with over 300,000 people attend over the 3 week period.


Alternative poster
Hero poster art


Ama was born in the thick of the pandemic lockdowns. Both Babekühl and Phondupe felt the need to explore the world beyond their bedroom walls, and their connection with the ocean.

The name ‘AMA’ translates to “Woman of the sea” in Japanese and refers to the traditional female free divers in Japan who would descend to the depths of the ocean in search of shellfish and pearls. Much like their deep and unique connection with the ocean, this film is a testament to the unity between humanity and nature.

Babekühl explores their childhood memories through the lens of an infrared camera, retracing the steps in the Australian landscape that surround their childhood home. Whilst Phondupe spent days creating a soundscape that transported him back to his travels to Naoshima Island, Japan. Digging through field recordings he had collected from a pre-pandemic adventure, he uncovered a sample of “angelic vocals recorded by the ocean” which formed the basis of the track.

Together we combined both our personal journeys of healing to create AMA – a transformative experience much like a visual medicine that connects you to the natural world.


Onsite at the Cutaway, Barangaroo



Billy Ryan
Eva Li
Jenny Kim
Pat Santamaria


Rich Lucano

Vivid Sydney

Mel Horkan (Producer)

Imagery C/O

Rodney Campbell
Destination NSW



Australian Traveller
Australian Arts Review 
Harpers Bazar
Vivid Blog

Next Project: Bloomscapes