In Real Life (Or Elsewhere): Om kreativa processer och parallella verkligheter i dokumentärfilm

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (artistic)


Reality isn’t what it appears to be. Contexts are not always clear and visible. People don’t always say what they really mean. And they don’t always mean what they say. When life is your stage manager, anything can happen. I often say, life is hard, my head is harder. Making documentaries is not for the faint-hearted.
This PhD project explores creative processes and parallel realities in documentary film, and discusses and conceptualizes the artistic practice of documentary filmmaking. The project consists in part of artistic works and essays that are critical reflections on the creative process and how that process can be conceptualized. The cinematic centerpiece of the thesis is entitled Images and the Worlds of Being (2011–2016). Previous subprojects are A Shift Between Worlds (2013–2015) and an essay book entitled In Real Life (or Elsewhere) (2013). Between 2013 and 2017, more essays were written, some of them translated to English. All the Swedish essays are available in PDF format. All of the works in the PhD project explore creative processes and parallel realities in two different ways: A Shift Between Worlds (2013–2015) explores identity and parallel realities in the gendered world. These works are based on two workshops led by Diane Torr, “Man for a Day” and “Woman for a Day.” They resulted in several component works, including two video essays, two audio works and two large-format photographic works, the latter in collaboration with photographer Johan Bergmark, as well as a short commentary film entitled Diane Speaks Out (2016). Images and the Worlds of Being (2011–2016) – a VR Classic Style film – explores what happens when documentary images are shown on four screens forming the walls of a room. This work also focuses on the view through the camera lens through which the filmmaker meets the world, in a hypnotic tapestry of parallel realities in a tenderly portrayed, runaway present. A sort of logical reasoning about the illogic of our era, in search of elusive reality (to paraphrase Jean Baudrillard) – the presence in the act of seeing. An experiment in the forms of visual knowledge, outside the traditional display windows. Shooting location: The World


  • Nevanti Kirsi
External organisations
  • Stockholm University of the Arts
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Visual Arts

Artistic work

  • Digital or Visual Product
  • Text
  • Artefact
  • Other


  • ethics documentary film, situational understanding, authenticity, reality, parallel realities, creative processes, know thyself, Images and the Worlds of Being, A Shift Between Worlds, director, film team, world, in real life (or elsewhere), IRL, VR, Virtual Reality, AR, Augmented Reality, life as stage manager, reflections on space, journey, snippet of time, interpretation of reality, protagonist, cinema, cinematic means, universe, imagination, artistic research, presence of the camera, existence, the act of seeing, visual knowledge, intuition, practical knowledge, communication, fictional, gender bending, identity, visual art, vantage point, unreality, art, vision, photography, cinematography, sound design, editing, directing, life science
Translated title of the contributionIn Real Life (Or Elsewhere) : On Creative Processes and Parallel Realities in Documentary Film
Original languageSwedish
Electronic ISBNs978-91-7753-293-4
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jun 1
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

Defence details Date: 2017-06-01 Time: 13:00 Place: Bio Victor, Filmhuset, Borgvägen 1-5, Stockholm External reviewer(s) Name: Bornemark, Jonna Title: Docent Affiliation: Södertörns Högskola ---

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