Mara Dionisio, Paulo Bala, Rui Trindade, Sandra Câmara, Dina Dionisio, Valentina Nisi
“Moving through space and narrative” is an art installation where participants are able to fully explore an interactive narrative called “The Old Pharmacy”, experimenting with different input methods for movement and exploration of a digital narrative.
The art installation tackles different degrees of freedom in movement, corresponding to past, present and future ways of interacting with narratives and virtual environments. This is enabled by the use of tablet devices which will allow the participants to be transported into the virtual environment of the pharmacy. As the scene unfolds, they are free to look around the environment, as well as follow the story plot.
The story takes place in the 19th century, in the Island of Madeira, where Laura, an orphan girl who learned the medicinal powers of the local endemic forest, is working in the pharmacy she established in order to aid the population with her remedies and knowledge. She is interrupted by a neighbour, asking for a traditional and medicinal drink – the Poncha. Spread around the pharmacy are the necessary ingredients to make this drink, as well as other items and products connected to the natural, cultural and economic values of the Island. The user, impersonating Laura, is requested to find the correct ingredients. By doing so, they encounter the various products and are informed by the voice of Laura about the qualities and benefits of such products. In this way, not only participants will be able to explore different ways to interact with a story unfolding in a virtual environment, but will also be able to learn aspects of a different culture and time. There are 3 distinct versions of interaction techniques available in this installation, with varied degrees of freedom provided by the depth sensing tablet.