An immersive, cinematic art experience designed for 360 cinemas, domes, virtual reality headsets by Roderick Coover (Fr/USA) and Krzysztof Wołek (Pl).

The Key To Time  is a highly experimental and imaginative, immersive, cinematic art experience designed for 360 cinemas, domes, virtual reality headsets and other immersive formats. It offers a surreal and operatic, dream-like experience, and it bridges early cinema and virtual reality.

Filmed at the CeTA Studios in Wroclaw, Poland, and created using 3-D 360 degree cinema technologies, the experience plunges viewers into a dreamlike adventure inside mechanisms of time and cinema itself.

The dreamlike story follows Tanek, a scientist who is trapped in the future due to a time-travel accident. His only hope is to travel through dreams. As with works like Guy Maddin's The Forbidden Room and David Blair's Wax or the Discovery of Television Among the Bees, this experimental art work turns upon its narrative threads. In addressing time, technology and environmental catastrophe, it also echoes themes of classics of early cinema like Arrival of a Train (at Ciotat) and Metropolis.

The design offers viewers a playful encounter with media forms and their meanings.  The characters hover between natural and animated selves - some drawn in cartoon form and others natural as they past through times and places. The adventures take place in real and virtual settings. Dialog and song are layered upon the dramatic action. View photo galleries...

The Key To Time occupies a space between media arts, sound and cinema. It is the result of an unique collaboration between media artist/filmmaker Roderick Coover and composer Krzysztof Wolek. Song and dialog elements layer over cinematic sequences filmed silently both in green screen studio settings and natural settings.

The cast features award-winning vocalists and actors including Joanna Freszel, Emily Albrink, Katherine Calcamuggio, Chad Sloan, Jesse Donner, Natalia Kalita and Paweł Smagała. It is sponsored through a major award from the Adam Mickiewicz Institute with co-funding and other support from Chouette Collective, Audio Visual Technology Center (CeTA), Temple University, Louisville University, TR Theater. Learn more...

Venues for the Key To Time are 360 degree cinema, 180 degree cinema, domes, virtual reality headset viewing room and large projection.  The length for a full experience is 44 minutes. Shorter 10-15 minute segments designed for VR gallery experiences are also available.

Formats Include:

  1. 2D and 3D equirectangular video for 360 cinema and CAVES in 8k, 6K, 5K, 4k and 2K formats with 5.1 and/or stereo sound. Over/under format for 3D. Most common codecs such as H264 and H265 are supported. 
  2. 2D and 3D 180 degree full dome/planetarium format video and image sequences in 4k and 2K formats with 5.1 sound. Most common codecs such as H264 and H265 supported. Separate image and sound tracks available.  
  3. 2D and 3D for VR headsets in 6K, 5K, 4k and 2K. Format is H264 with ambisonic sound. Recommended for use with higher quality VR head-mounted displays and higher quality audio headsets for 40mps or 60mps playback. 
  4. Large projection formats and alternative gallery formats are also possible. Dome format still images can accompany gallery exhibitions of the work or be shown separately. 

Video Trailers And Samples  

Full screeners are available in the following forms: video, VR, dome. Installation and screening versions are available in 2D VR and 3D VR with 5.1 sound, 2D VR and 3D VR for headsets with ambisonic sound, 2D dome and 3D dome with 5.1 sound, 2D and 3D video with stereo and 5.1 sound. 8k,6k, 4k and 2k versions available in all formats. The Key To Time is made in English. Translations are available in French and Polish. Further video samples can be viewed here. Full screeners are available on request.


This project is one of the +100 works sponsored by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute (IAM) as part of POLSKA 100, the international cultural program accompanying the centenary of Poland regaining independence. The work was primarily filmed in the green screen studios at CeTA Audio Visual Technology Center in Wroclaw. The work was produced by Chouette Collective with co-production from Adam Mickiewicz Institute and CeTA. Additional support was provided by TR Theater Warsaw. Temple University and Louisville University.

About The Artists 

Links for more information about award-winning collaborators Roderick Coover and Krzysztof Wolek.
Roderick Coover website
Krzysztof Wolek website

Cast And Artist Biographies 

The Key To Time features an award-winning cast including Joanna Freszel, Emily Albrink, Katherine Calcamuggio, Chad Sloan and Jesse Donner and actors Natalia Kalita and Paweł Smagała. Learn more...

Interview with Roderick Coover

"Storytelling in VR, CAVES and other emerging forms: An interview with Roderick Coover by Katarzyna Boratyn" in IMAGES Vol. XXIII no.32. Read PDF...

Photo Galleries  

Still images from The Key To Time, including production photos, stills and dome images. Learn more...

About +100

+100: Three Works Of An Emerging Avant Guarde. Learn More...


Email contact form for Roderick Coover and the Chouette Collective.  Connect here...