Fremantle, Western Australia

Get ready for a jam packed one-day conference on Extended Reality (XR) combining virtual reality, augmented reality, mixed reality, 360 video, immersive technologies and the metaverse! Our program will feature keynote speakers, industry experts, and thought leaders who will share their knowledge on XR's impact on different sectors, including mining, resources, health, education, training, marketing, social impact, and creative arts. We'll cover cutting-edge technology, emerging trends, applications, and best practices in XR across diverse industries.

Immerse Connect is a proud partner of the inaugural WA GAMES WEEK which will be held across Perth at multiple venues from 17th to 23rd September 2023.


Immerse Australia presents a high quality boutique event for our inaugural XR event. Our audience attendees will include companies and professionals who want to learn more about this fast growing industry and opportunities for real business outcomes. Join us for a day of informative and educational sessions including presentations and panel discussions featuring XR experts across a range of topics.

  • Education and Training
  • Mining, Resources and Engineering
  • Architecture, Design and User Experience
  • Games and Immersive Worlds
  • Metaverse and Mixed Realities
  • Creative Industries
  • Social Impact and Change
  • Virtual Production 
  • Contemporary Art 
  • Storytelling and Narrative Design
  • Spatial Computing, AI and more!


Our conference is ideal for designers, software developers, UX professionals, engineers, marketers, entrepreneurs, researchers, educators and executives who are interested in the potential of Extended Reality and immersive technologies. Attendees will discover how Extended Reality is already being usitlised by a diverse number of industries to create engaging and immersive experiences for education, marketing, training, monitoring, planning, collaboration and more. You will also learn about current trends in XR software, hardware, platforms as well as the convergence with adjacent technologies including artificial intelligence and blockchain.

Don't miss this chance to gain valuable insights and network with XR industry experts and innovators. Tickets to this one-day event include access to all panels, networking opportunities and catering.

  • Ben Bauert


    Facilitate VR

  • Jamie Bentley

    Vice President of External Projects

    PlaySide Studios

  • Doug Bester

    Founder and Managing Director

    Sentient Computing

  • Professor Richard Blythe

    Pro Vice-Chancellor, Faculty Humanities

    Curtin University

  • Lucy Cooke

    Founder and CEO


  • Amy Doherty

    Creative Director, Developer

    Arch Rebels

  • Ivan Ertlov

    Homegrown Games

  • Elham Eshraghian-Haakaansson

    Artist, Forrest Fellow

    Forrest Research Foundation

  • Shanti Gelmi

    Contemporary Artist

  • Grady Habib

    Managing Director


  • Hazem Halasa


    Hassell Studio

  • Rebecca Kerr

    Lecturer, SAE Institute Australia. Game Developer, Unnatural Freaks Studio.

  • Professor Cheryl Kickett-Tucker AM

    Faculty of Humanities

    Curtin University

  • Miranda Johnson

    Public Program & Studio Manager

    Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts

  • Michela Ledwidge

    Founder and CEO


  • Caitlin Lomax

    Founder, Intr Studio. Organiser, WA Games Week.

  • Justin McArdle


    Frame Labs

  • David McDonnell


    Last Pixel

  • Dr Paola Magni

    Forensic Science Educator, Researcher and Consultant & Associate Dean Engagement.

    Murdoch University

  • Natalie Marinho

    Chair, Immerse Australia

    Creative Director, Voyant AR

  • Shaun Miller



  • Dr Brennen Mills

    Senior Lecturer, School of Medical & Health Sciences

    Lead, Simulation & Immersive Digital Technology Group
    Edith Cowan University

  • Tristan Morgan

    Computational Design and Automation Lead

    Aurecon Group

  • Chris Murphy

    Unreal Engine Specialist

    Epic Games

  • Michael Ovens

    Software Engineer

    Immersive Technologies

  • Jonathan Pillai

    Head, Animation & Game Design

    Curtin University

  • Karina Price



  • Megan Pusey

    Senior UX Designer

    Esri Australia

  • Jordan Russell

    Software Engineer

    Austal Ships

  • David Smith

    State Chair, The Design Institute of Australia

    CoFounder, Perth Design Week

    Director, United Studio & Markr Systems

  • Mark Smith

    Digital Games Manager


  • Cameron Stevens

    Director, Technology & Digital Transformation
    Pocketknife Group

  • Adam Trainer

    Community Engagement Officer - Arts and Culture

    State Library of Western Australia

  • Poppy van Oorde-Grainger


    Same Drum

  • Scott Whiteley

    Director & CoFounder

    Ready Team One

  • 08:15 Registrations Open

  • 09:00 Introduction

  • 09:15 Keynote

    Professor Richard Blythe, Pro Vice Chancellor Humanities, Curtin University

  • 10:00 Morning Tea & Networking

  • Garden Suite: Industry Applications

  • Rottnest Suite: Creative Industries

  • 10:30 Panel - Immersive Learning in Education and Training

    • Karina Price (Moderator), Founder, STEM XR
    • Ben Bauert, CEO, Facilitate VR
    • Professor Cheryl Kickett-Tucker, Faculty of Humanities, School of Education, Curtin University
    • Dr Brennen Mills, Senior Lecturer, School of Medical & Health Sciences. Lead, Simulation & Immersive Digital Technology Group, Edith Cowan University
  • 10:30 Panel - Behind the Screen with Virtual Production and 360 content

    • Justin McArdle (Moderator), CoFounder, Frame Labs
    • Michela Ledwidge, Founder and CEO, Mod
    • David McDonnell, Director, Last Pixel
  • 11:30 Panel - Innovations in Mining, Resources and Engineering

    • Lucy Cooke (Moderator), Founder and CEO, SpaceDraft
    • Doug Bester, Founder and Managing Director, Sentient Computing
    • Michael Ovens, Software Engineer, Immersive Technologies
    • Jordan Russell, Software Engineer, Austal Ships
  • 11:30 Panel - Contemporary Art and Immersive Audience Experiences

    • Miranda Johnson (Moderator), Public Program & Studio Manager, Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts
    • Elham Eshraghian-Haakaansson, Artist, Forrest Fellow, Forrest Research Foundation
    • Shanti Gelmi, Artist
  • 12:30 Lunch and Networking

  • 1:30 Panel - XR for Social Impact and Change

    • Natalie Marinho (Moderator), Chair, Immerse Australia. Creative Director, Voyant AR
    • Grady Habib, Managing Director, Sandbox
    • Jonathan Pillai, Head - Animation & Game Design, Curtin University
    • Adam Trainer, Community Engagement Officer - Arts and Culture, State Library of Western Australia
  • 1:30 Panel - Games and Immersive Worlds

    • Mark Smith (Moderator), Digital Games Manager, Screenwest
    • Caitlin Lomax, Founder, Intr Studio
    • Chris Murphy, Unreal Engine Specialist, Epic Games
    • Scott Whiteley, Director & CoFounder, Ready Team One
  • 2:30 Panel - User Experience, Design and Architecture

    • David Smith (Moderator), State Chair, The Design Institute of Australia. CoFounder, Perth Design Week. Director, United Studio & Markr Systems
    • Hazem Halasa, Architect, Hassell Studio
    • Shaun Miller, Director, Parametric
    • Megan Pusey, Senior UX Designer, Esri Australia
  • 2:30 Panel - Storytelling and Narrative Design for XR

    • Rebecca Kerr (Moderator), Lecturer, SAE Institute
    • Ivan Ertlov, Founder, Homegrown Games
    • Amy Doherty, Creative Director, Developer, Arch Rebels
    • Poppy van Oorde-Grainger, Director, Same Drum
  • 3:30 Afternoon Break & Networking

  • 3:45 Panel - Convergence: Spatial Computing, AI and the Metaverse

    • Cameron Stevens (Moderator), Director, Technology & Digital Transformation, Pocketknife Group
    • Jamie Bentley, Vice President of External Projects, PlaySide Studios
    • Dr Paola Magni, Forensic Science Educator, Researcher and Consultant & Associate Dean Engagement, Murdoch University
    • Tristan Morgan, Computational Design and Automation Lead, Aurecon Group
  • 5:00 Informal Networking

    Ball and Chain, 45 Marine Terrace, Fremantle

Virtual Architecture of Empathy

Launching exclusively as part of WA Games Week, Immerse Australia is pleased to share this work by award-winning artist and Forrest Fellow, Elham Eshraghian-Haakansson. Elham will also be participating at Immerse Connect as a panelist on "Contemporary Art and Immersive Audience Experiences".

In her powerful virtual reality (VR) work, Virtual Architecture of Empathy, Iranian-Australian artist Elham Eshraghian-Haakansson explores how immersive mediums such as VR can foster empathy in the viewer. The work follows her family’s experiences of forced migration, inviting audiences to form an emotional connection while evoking empathy for and a deeper understanding of migration, displacement and homelessness.

Weaving live theatre with film and poetry, the virtual world created by Eshraghian-Haakansson makes visible the cultural stories that transcend personal experience – becoming universal tales of the human condition. Using VR, the artist immerses the viewer in their story, shifting the viewer’s perspective from one of passive spectatorship to that of witness and participant. By facilitating an emotional, active experience, Eshraghian-Haakansson asks the viewer to consider their ideas of what constitutes a home.  

Event Notes and Content Warnings: The following artwork contains depictions of trauma which may be upsetting to some audiences.  Parental guidance is advised.


Perth Institute of Contemporary Art (PICA), 19 - 24 September 2023


We would love to partner with your organisation to help promote and connect you with relevant opportunities in the XR industry in Australia. We are also happy to discuss alternative in-kind partnership arrangements including software/hardware discounts for attendees or prize donations.

For more information please contact our event team at