Bug: Interactive and Immersive Narratives

Page 1

BUG INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ SANDRA GAUDENZI EDITORS


PREFEITURA DO RIO DE JANEIRO, SECRETARIA MUNICIPAL DE CULTURA, LEI MUNICIPAL DE INCENTIVO À CULTURA - LEI DO ISS PRESENT

EDITORS

ALBERTO SARAIVA ART & TECHNOLOGY COLLECTION COORDINATOR

1st

EDITION

RIO DE JANEIRO, 2019

PUBLISHER

CO-PUBLISHING

PROJECT

SUPPORT

SPONSORSHIP


OI FUTURO

LIGHTING

UNIVERSIDAD DE BUENOS AIRES)

Roberto dos Santos Bartholo Junior

MANAGING COUNCIL

BeLight Samuel Betts EQUIPMENTS

TEXTS

On Projeções

André Paz Sandra Gaudenzi Mayra Jucá Kátia Augusta Maciel Arnau Gifreu-Castells Jéssica Cruz Julia Salles María Laura Ruggiero Fanny Belvisi Xavier de la Vega

COPPE/UFRJ)

PRESIDENT

Eurico de Jesus Teles Neto BOARD MEMBERS

Jose Augusto da Gama Figueira Roberto Terziani Suzana Gomes Santos

VR EQUIPMENT

Thunder VR

EXECUTIVE BOARD

VIDEOS

PRESIDENT DIRECTOR

Cria Projetos e Narrativas

Suzana Gomes Santos PHOTOGRAPHY VIDE PRESIDENT DIRECTOR

Felipe Varanda

Silvio Roberto Vieira Almeida

PRODUCTION

DIRECTOR

Meise Halabi

Mariana Schincariol e Marisa S. Mello | Automatica

Sara Crosman

COMMUNICATION ASSISTANT

PRODUCTION ASSISTANT

CULTURE

LEONARDO COELHO

Ana Pimenta | Automatica

Roberto Guimarães

SOCIAL MEDIA

CREDITS OF THE IMAGES

CULTURE MANAGEMENT

Victor D’Almeida

Leonardo Coelho Raquel Boechat Bianca Nonato

VISUAL ARTS CURATOR

EDITORIAL COORDINATION OF THE WEBSITE

Alberto Saraiva

Mayra Jucá

VISUAL ARTS PRODUCTION

MONITORING COORDINATION

Claudia Leite

Diogo Fernandes

CULTURE COORDINATOR

SUPPORT

Sérgio Ricardo Pereira

The British Academy University Of Westminster UNIRIO PROEX/UNIRIO ECO/UFRJ LTDS/UFRJ COPPE/UFRJ PPGTLCOM/UFRJ USIS/UFRJ Thunder VR Futura Erasmus/União Europeia Newton Fund LASIN Cria Projetos e Narrativas

Felipe Varanda portuguese: 8, 25 (base); 26, 44, 59, 60, 71, 72, 81, 82, 92, 100, 105, 106, 123, 136 english: 87, 90, 78, 67, 51, 6 Marco Terranova portuguese: 25 (top); 104, 120, 130 english: 8 Vanessa Lauria portuguese: 18 IDROPS/IFLAB portuguese: 36, 43 english: 37 BUG404 português: 4, 99

PRESS RELATIONS

EXECUTIVE MANAGEMENT OF CULTURE

PERFORMING ARTS PRODUCTION

Zelia Peixoto LABSONICA PRODUCTION

Yuri Chamusca CULTURAL SPONSORSHIPS

Luciana Adão Joseph Andrade MUSEOLOGY

Bruna Cruz Leyanne Azevedo

GRAPHIC DESIGN

DÍnamo CATALOG TEXT EDITING (WORKS)

Manoela Meyer TRANSLATIONS

David Hauss Lis Horta Moriconi Mariana Gago Carola Mittrany PROOFREADING

MUSEOLOGY PRODUCTION

Rosana Lobo Amanda Coimbra McCaskey

Sandro Rosa

BUGLAB - CONFERENCE

CULTURE TEAM

COORDINATION

Jairo Vargas João André Macena Juliana Moreira Marciel Oliveira Raphael Fernandes

André Paz Kátia Augusta Maciel

PRINT

ORGANIZING COMMITTEE

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Gabriel Brum

Inês Maciel Julia Salles Luciano Saramago Ronaldo Ranzemberger

PRESS OFFICE

PRODUCTION COMMITTEE

Leticia Duque Carla Meneghini

Arthur Moraes Bianca Nonato Bruna Lacerda Christophe Nonato Marina Cruz Willian Nogueira

The British Academy Cédric Mal (Le Blog Documentaire) Julia Salles Arnau Gifreu-Castells Kátia Augusta Maciel María Laura Ruggiero Fanny Belvisi Xavier de la Vega Jéssica Cruz Manoela Meyer Laure Cops Wouter Vanmol Marcia Mansur Marina Thomé

INTERN

BUG EXHIBITION CURATORSHIP

André Paz Julia Salles Arnau Gifreu

PUBLICATION BUG: INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES

PRODUCTION

EDITORS

Automatica Luiza Mello Mariana Schincariol de Mello

André Paz Sandra Gaudenzi EDITORIAL COORDINATOR

PRODUCTION ASSISTANT

Mayra Jucá

Ana Pimenta EDITORIAL BOARD (LETRA E IMAGEM) MANAGER

Felipe Trotta

Marisa S. Mello

(PPG EM COMUNICAÇÃO E DEPARTAMENTO DE ESTUDOS CULTURAIS E MÍDIA/UFF)

GRAPHIC DESIGN

João Paulo Macedo e Castro

Dínamo Alexsandro Souza

(DEPARTAMENTO DE FILOSOFIA E CIÊNCIAS SOCIAIS/UNIRIO)

Ladislau Dowbor

(DEPARTAMENTO DE PÓS-

GRADUAÇÃO DA FEA/PUC-SP) EXPOGRAPHY PROJECT

Leonardo De Marchi

Gávea Arquitetura Felipe Rio Branco Alziro Carvalho Neto

(FACULDADE DE COMUNICAÇÃO SOCIAL/UERJ)

Marcel Bursztyn (CENTRO DE DESENVOLVIMENTO SUSTENTÁVEL/UNB)

Micael Herschmann SCENE SETS

(ESCOLA DE COMUNICAÇÃO/UFRJ)

H. O. Silva Produções Humberto Junior

Pablo Alabarces (FALCULDAD DE CIENCIAS SOCIALES/

Stilgraf


COLEÇÃO ARTE & TECNOLOGIA OI FUTURO  |  THE OI FUTURO ART & TECHNOLOGY COLLECTION

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CARVALHO.  |  EPA!, MIGUEL COLKER [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2012 69.

COEDIÇÃO LIVRE EXPRESSÃO, 2012 70.

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PAULO CLIMACHAUSKA  |  ALBERTO SARAIVA ,COEDIÇÃO

COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2009

EDIÇÃO F10, 2013

COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2010 A CARTA DA JAMAICA  |  ALFONS HUG [ORG.], CO-

POESIA VISUAL  |  ALBERTO SARAIVA [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO F10, 2013

ZAVAREZE [ORG.], 2007 39.

MULTIPLICIDADE 2012  |  BATMAN ZAVAREZE [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2013

CONTRA CAPA, 2007 MULTIPLICIDADE: IMAGEM_SOM_INUSITADOS | BATMAN

XICO CHAVES  |  ALBERTO SARAIVA [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO F10, 2012

72.

RICARDO BARRETO [ORG.], 2009 FREDERICO DALTON: FOTOMECANISMOS, COEDIÇÃO

PREDICAMENT – SITUAÇÕES DIFÍCEIS | YANN LORVO E STÉPHANIE SUFFREN, COEDIÇÃO APICURI, 2012

FILE 8 BIT GAME PEOPLE: FESTIVAL INTERNACIONAL DE LINGUAGEM ELETRÔNICA  |  PAULA PERISSINOTTO E

42.

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DE PARIS/ARC ANGELINE SCHERF, ODILE BURLURAUX,

41.

ILUMINANDO O FUTURO – 50 ANOS DE JORGINHO DE

GARY HILL: O LUGAR SEM O TEMPO.  TAKING TIME

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ARTE E TECNOLOGIA - REFLEXÕES E EXPERIÊN-

NA COLEÇÃO DO MUSÉE D’ART MODERNE DE LA VILLE

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SEBASTIÃO BARBOSA, FOTÓGRAFO | FELIPPE SCHULTZ

CONTRA CAPA, 2009

CONTRA CAPA, 2009

36.

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66.

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HIGH-TECH/LOW-TECH – FORMAS DE PRODUÇÃO | ALFONS HUG [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2012

65.

GUAGEM ELETRÔNICA  |  RICARDO BARRETO E PAULA 29.

MULTIPLICIDADE 2011  |  BATMAN ZAVAREZE [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2012

FILE RIO 2009: FESTIVAL INTERNACIONAL DE LINPERISSINOTTO [ORG.], 2009

BRÍGIDA BALTAR: O QUE É PRECISO PARA VOAR  |  BRÍGIDA BALTAR E MARCELO CAMPOS, CO-

LO CALDAS, EDUARDO BONITO E REGINA LEVY [ORGS], 24.

EDITORA DE LIVROS LTDA, 2014

COLETIVA PROJETOS CULTURAIS, 2013 81.

FILE GAMES RIO 2014: FESTIVAL IN-

O PAPAGAIO DE HUMBOLDT  |  ALFONS HUG [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO NAU DAS LETRAS EDITORA DE LIVROS LTDA, 2015

92.

NIURA BELLAVINHA: EM TORNO DA LUZ | ALBERTO SARAIVA, COEDIÇÃO NAU EDITORA, 2014

93.

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94.

TRANSPERFORMANCE 2  |  MARISA FLÓRIDO [ORG.],

95.

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COEDIÇÃO F10, 2015 COEDIÇÃO F10, 2015 RANO  |  LUIZA INTERLENGHI [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO MEMÓRIA VISUAL, 2015 96.

ADF.14 - ATOS DE FALA  |  FELIPE RIBEIRO [ORG.],

97.

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98.

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COEDIÇÃO RIZOMA, 2014 E PAULO MIYADA, COEDIÇÃO COSAC NAIFY, 2015

[ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2011

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NEOS  |  DELFIM SARDO, COEDIÇÃO NAU DAS LETRAS 91.

AEROPLANO, 2011

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POIESIS  |  ANDRÉ VALLIAS, FRIEDRICH W. BLOCH, ADOLFO MONTEJO NAVAS [ORGS.], 2008

2014

ALÉM CINEMA  |  NEVILLE D’ALMEIDA, COEDIÇÃO NOVA

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[ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2011

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FRONTEIRA, 2011

2007

19.

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APICHATPONG WEERASETHAKUL  |  DANIELLA AZZI E

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53.

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EDIÇÃO APICURI, 2013

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FILMES DE ARTISTA: BRASIL 1965–80 | FERNANDO

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89.

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88.

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[ORG.], 2010

EDIÇÕES, 2011 PERFORMANCE PRESENTE FUTURO VOL. III | DANIELA

FILE RIO 2010: PERSPECTIVAS DA ARTE DIGITAL  |  PAULA PERISSINOTTO E RICARDO BARRETO

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RELIVRO:

FOTO + VÍDEO + ARTE CONTEMPORÂNEA: FOTORIO 2009  |  MILTON GURAN [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLA-

ARTE E NOVAS ESPACIALIDADES: RELAÇÕES CONTEMPORÂNEAS  |  EDUARDO DE JESUS [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO

BRICS  |  ALFONS HUG [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO EDITORA ATLÂNTICA, 2014

85.

FAD - FESTIVAL DE ARTE DIGITAL 2010  |  FAD -

CONTEMPORÂNEA BRASILEIRA | GLÓRIA FERREIRA

ANATOMIA DA LUZ  |  MARTHA PAGY [ORG], ALBANO AFONSO, 2014

84.

MULTIPLICIDADE 2010  |  BATMAN ZAVAREZE [ORG.],

INSTITUTO CIDADES CRIATIVAS, 2010 47.

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83.

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6.

10.

82.

WLADEMIR DIAS-PINO | WLADEMIR DIAS-PINO

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RICARDO BARRETO [ORG.], 2006

9.

DE

[ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2011

LINGUAGEM ELETRÔNICA  |  PAULA PERISSINOTTO E

8.

LIVRO DE SOMBRAS: PINTURA, CINEMA, POESIA

AZEREDO [ORG.], EDIÇÃO ADUPLA, 2015 99.

ÁREA 91 - THALES LEITE  |  MARISA FLÓRIDO CESAR [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO F10, 2016

100. POESIA VISUAL 3  |  ALBERTO SARAIVA [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO F10, 2016 101. TRANSPERFORMANCE 3  |  GABRIEL BOGOSSIAN, LUÍSA DUARTE [ORGS.]., COEDIÇÃO F10, 2016 102. AMOR  |  DENISE CARVALHO E MONIKA SZEWCZYK, COEDIÇÃO BARLÉU EDIÇÕES, 2016. 103. GAMBIÓLOGOS 2.0 A GAMBIARRA NOS TEMPOS DO DIGITAL  |  FRED PAULINO [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO FOGÃO DE LENDA, 2016 104. ADF. 16 - ATOS DE FALA | FELIPE RIBEIRO [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO RIZOMA, 2016 105. MULTIPLICIDADE 2014  |  BATMAN ZAVAREZE [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2015 106. ESPÍRITO DE TUDO  |  ROSÂNGELA RENNÓ [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO COBOGÓ, 2017 107. MULTIPLICIDADE 2025  |  BATMAN ZAVAREZE [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO COBOGÓ, 2017 108. CÓDIGOS PRIMORDIAIS  |  CAROLINE MENEZES E FABRIZIO POLTRONIERI [ORGS.], COEDIÇÃO CAOSMOS EDITORA, 2017 109. MÁQUINA DEVIR – MARIA LYNCH  |  BERNARDO MOSQUEIRA, ANDRÉ ABU-MERHY BARROSO E ALBERTO SARAIVA, COEDIÇÃO R&L PRODUTORES ASSOCIADOS, 2017 110. NAM JUNE PAIK  |  MARCO PIERINI, COEDIÇÃO BASE 7 PROJETOS CULTURAIS, 2017 111. POESIA VISUAL 4  |  ALBERTO SARAIVA [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO FIORETTI, 2016 112. OUTRAS IDEIAS – DANIEL ARSHAM + AZUMA MAKOTO  |  MARCELLO DANTAS, EDIÇÃO OI FUTURO, 2017 113. DENISE CATHILINA – FOTOGRAFIA EXPANDIDA | ALBERTO SARAIVA, EDIÇÃO OI FUTURO, 2018 114. POESIA VISUAL 5  |  ALBERTO SARAIVA E TERRI WITEK [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO OI FUTURO/FIORETTI/CONFRARIA DO VENTO, 2018 115. KATIA MACIEL  |  KATIA MACIEL [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO COBOGÓ, 2018 116. CELACANTO

ODIR ALMEIDA | MARIA ARLETE

GONÇALVES [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO COLETIVA 2018 117. EXISTÊNCIA NUMÉRICA  |  DORIS KOSMINSKY, BARBARA CASTRO

E LUIZ LUDWIG [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO RIO

BOOKS, 2019 118. MAIS PERFORMANCE  |  CAROLINE MENEZES [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO CAOSMOS EDITORA, 2019 119. MULTIPLICIDADE 2018/2017 | BATMAN ZAVAREZE [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO EDITORA CIRCUITO, 2019 120. BUG NARRATIVAS INTERATIVAS E IMERSIVAS | ANDRÉ

EDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2010

TERNACIONAL DE LINGUAGEM ELETRÔNICA

PAZ & SANDRA GAUDENZI [ORG.], COEDIÇÃO AUTOMAT-

SONIA ANDRADE: VIDEOS  |  ANDRÉ LENZ [ORG.],

PAULA PERISSINOTTO E RICARDO BARRETO [ORG.],

ICA EDIÇÕES; LETRA E IMAGEM, 2019

COEDIÇÃO AEROPLANO, 2010

COEDIÇÃO FILE, 2014



CHAPTER 1 Overview THE SCENARIO OF INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES - ANDRÉ PAZ AND MAYRA JUCÁ

10

TAKING THE INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES ‘OUT OF THE BOX’: A CONVERSATION WITH SANDRA GAUDENZI - BY ANDRÉ PAZ

19

MOVING FROM LINEAR TO DIGITAL INTERACTIVE STORIES: A SHIFTING WORLD THAT DEMANDS SEVERAL MIND SHIFTS - SANDRA GAUDENZI

24

FROM STORY-TELLERS TO STORY-FACILITATORS: INTERVIEW WITH LAURE COPS & WOUTER VANMOL, FROM NUNAM - BY SANDRA GAUDENZI

32

CHAPTER 2 Interactive Narratives BEYOND THE INTERFACE: FUNDAMENTAL CONCEPTS AND WORKS IN INTERACTIVE NARRATIVE - ANDRÉ PAZ AND KÁTIA AUGUSTA MACIEL

38

CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN INTERACTIVE AND TRANSMEDIA DOCUMENTARY: THE AMERICAS, EUROPE, AND AUSTRALIA - ARNAU GIFREU-CASTELLS

52

MEDIA AND PLATFORMS ECHO IN THE SOUND OF BELLS - BY JÉSSICA CRUZ

61

CHAPTER 3 Immersive Narratives THE VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCE FROM THE NARRATIVE PERSPECTIVE: ENVISIONING ALTERNATE REALITIES - JÚLIA SALLES E MARÍA LAURA RUGGIERO

68

FÉLIX & PAUL: A GUIDED TOUR OF THE PRESTIGIOUS VIRTUAL REALITY STUDIO - BY FANNY BELVISI

77

OKIO STUDIO, FRANCE’S PIONEERING VIRTUAL REALITY STUDIO, RESPONSIBLE FOR “I PHILIP” AND “ALTÉRATION” - BY XAVIER DE LA VEGA

83

CHAPTER 4 The BUG Exhibition – Catalog INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES 106 MOBILE NARRATIVES 120 IMMERSIVE VÍDEO 123 VIRTUAL REALITY 130 TRANSMEDIA INSTALLATION 135



INTRODUCTION

A bug is a programming error. Something unexpected, foreign to a system. Much like the works discussed in this book: uncommon in the programmed universe we find on the internet. We are constantly overstimulated by images, sounds, or phrases which reach us through televisions, cell phones, screens in elevators. An informative kaleidoscope, fed by new digital technologies connected to the internet. We can, however, also glean a number of works from this environment which lead us to inspiring, provocative experiences. These are interactive and immersive narratives in different formats and platforms (websites, applications for mobile devices, installations, web documentaries, interactive documentaries, 360 videos, virtual reality, augmented reality). A variety of productions that incorporate the interactivity or immersion of new media into their narrative structure. From behind their interfaces, these projects explore different forms of creation, production, distribution, and reception among producers, participants, and the public. Processes of co-creation, production of participative media, and production of collaborative works allow for different forms of agency. The projects gain purpose beyond their artistic value: they gain social impact, give new meaning to urban spaces, and help to preserve the environment, cultural heritage, and social memory. This book is one of the outputs of The BUG Exhibition, held in the Oi Futuro Flamengo Cultural Center in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, between September 11th to October 9th, 2018, curated by AndrÊ Paz, Julia Salles, and Arnau Gifreu-Castells. It evolved out of the exhibition’s objective: to create an introduction to the field which will inspire new projects in the production or research of interactive and immersive narratives. There is no set form or methodology, however, to be followed to be followed by new projects. Instead, it is a production of hybrid works, whose creative processes intertwine the audiovisual, new technologies, design, and programming. They require a collaboration among artists, filmmakers, programmers, designers, technologists, specialists, activists, and researchers. As with The BUG Exhibition itself, this book follows the Bug404 (bug404.net) principles of participation and dissemination that were the foundation of both initiatives. The subsequent articles and interviews, in incorporating a diverse range of voices and visions, represent one more attempt to deepen the dialogue between researchers and those who create and produce the works.

7


The first chapter addresses the whole scenario behind interactive and immersive narrative projects. André Paz and Mayra Jucá present a portrait of the scene beyond the works themselves: producers, festivals, labs, and research centers. They also show how these works can arise within innovative ecosystems and present the Bug404 proposal along these terms. Sandra Gaudenzi completes the landscape

with

her considerations on the changes in mindset required for developing innovative projects based, among other things, on her experience as founder and coordinator of !F LAB. At the end of the chapter, NuNam producers Laure Cops and Wouter Vanmol talk about their experience of participating in this LAB. The chapter Interactive Narratives, is focused on the spectrum of works called interactive documentary, web documentary, living

documentary, or transmedia documentary. In “Beyond The Interface: fundamental concepts and works in interactive narrative”, André Paz and Katia Augusta Maciel present an introduction to the field and to basic concepts used to understand and develop new projects. The article by Arnau Gifreu-Castells presents interactive and transmedia documentary’s stages of development in different parts of the world. Next, in an interview with Jéssica Cruz, Estúdio Crua’s Marina Thomé and Marcia Mansur, directors of the interactive and transmedia documentary The Sound of Bells (2015), analyze the behind the scenes reality of this project, which uses new media to promote Brazil’s intangible heritage, the traditional bell sounds of historical churches in Minas Gerais. The third chapter is dedicated to Immersive Narratives. The article “The Virtual Reality Experience from the Narrative Perspective: envisioning multiple realities,” by Julia Salles and Maria Laura Ruggiero, presents the new challenges to the creative process from the perspective of the producer. The subsequent interview offers a guided tour through the prestigious Canadian virtual reality studio, Felix & Paul, which has stood out for works including Through the

Masks of LUZIA and Dreams of “O”, with Cirque du Soleil. At the end of the chapter, Xavier de la Vega presents the Okio-Studio, a French pioneer in virtual reality, which produced works such as I, Philip and Alteration, two virtual reality works of science fiction. These works by Felix & Paul and Okio-Studio are among those selected for The BUG Exhibition and presented in the fourth chapter. The event presented a diverse panorama divided into sessions and projections of interactive documentaries, mobile narratives,


360 videos, virtual reality animations, and installations. A large part of the works in this catalog is analyzed throughout the book, illustrating deep questions through articles and interviews. This is an invitation for the reader to explore this universe, filled with new forms of telling, provoking, and experiencing stories.

ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI EDITORS

OI FUTURO

Storytelling was the raw material of what could be called the radical occupation of the Oi Futuro cultural center from 14 August to 9 September 2018. The trio of curators - André Paz, Julia Salles, and Arnau Gifreu - joined together with a group of professionals who have, for a long time now, investigated the effects of contemporary technologies on narrative forms. Many desires, many places, and many trajectories made up this great BUG. Using a diverse range of technological devices, the exhibition mapped out the infinite possibilities of storytelling in an instigating manner, within a game of perception which included cellular phones, computers, videos and projections on virtual and physical spaces, both immersive and interactive. Singular narratives constructed for spaces apart from the traditional areas of theater, cinema, TV, and even the internet. Extensive territory for creation, with producers from Brazil and beyond. BUG gathered works made up of different visual profiles, in the challenge of intersecting science, art, and technology, blurring the lines between literature, audiovisual art, photography, computer art, and design. A project which uniquely places the spectator at the center, inviting her to interact and construct her own narrative, recreating characters and promoting new paths between fiction and reality. BUG has now become a book, part of our Oi Futuro Art & Technology Collection, which chronicles the exhibitions shown at Oi Futuro. In being retold, a story is never the same. Just like the world, narratives are constantly in movement. I, you, and the other, in permanent transformation. Without beginning, middle, or end.

ROBERTO GUIMARÃES CULTURE EXECUTIVE-MANAGER - OI FUTURO

9


INTRODUCTION

New technologies have always been associated with the emergence of new languages, modes of communi-

OVERVIEW

cation, and narrative forms. Some examples of this relationship have become unavoidable clichés: in the 15th century, Gutenberg marked the birth of the

THE SCENARIO OF INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE

press with his invention of a printing machine; in the 19th century, the daguerreotype brought on the emergence of photography; and at the end of the same century, the Lumiére brothers, with their cinematograph, released the cornerstone for the foundation of the cinematic “form”. Since the the 20th century, the rhythm of innovations has

ANDRÉ PAZ1 AND MAYRA JUCÁ2

increased, and the media that came after (film, video, CD-ROM, DVD) and the forms of narrating also entered a prolific phase of experiences. At the beginning of the 21st century, the arrival of Web 2.0 opened the floodgates to uploading, questioning the concept of centralized communication (beyond one for all, we began to experience new forms of communication, those of all for all, as Pierre Levy observed.) The dissemination of digital media and the consolidation of the internet opened up a series of new narrative possibilities. When cyberspace

1  André Paz is a professor and researcher at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro State (UNIRIO). He teaches in the Professional Masters of Digital Creation and Production at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). Director and producer of interactive narratives. Founder and coordinator of Bug404. Curator of THE BUG EXHIBITION in 2018.

becomes a dimension of human existence as real and

2  Mayra Jucá is a journalist (UFRJ), researcher, and producer of interactive and collaborative documentaries and platforms. She is a doctoral student in History, Politics, and Cultural Patrimony (FGV/CPDOC), teaches Graduate Courses in Documentary Cinema at FGV-RJ. She founded and directs Cria Projetos e Narrativas.

transformed. Observing these transformations, Henry

BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET

unavoidable as physical territory; when cyberculture or digital culture dictates new habits and behaviors; when productivity and creativity are made possible through a collective intelligence (Levy, 1994;1997), it is natural that the forms of creating, interpreting, and accessing stories will be

Jenkins (2006), for example, introduced the concept of convergence culture and transmedia storytelling; and Janet Murray, in “Hamlet on the Holodeck: The Future of Narrative in Cyberspace” (2007), noted the concept of interactive storytelling, and made

10


predictions encompassing various forms of digital

a profusion of works that are difficult to classify

narratives that arose later.

and which include diverse productive and creative

In this context, a broad spectrum of work

processes. We simply locate references which can

arises which we call in this book interactive

cater to readers wishing to launch themselves as

narrative or immersive narrative, for incor-

producers and seeking inspiration and support in

porating interactivity with, or immersion of,

making their projects viable.

the spectator as a fundamental principle of the narrative structure. In truth, it refers to an extremely diverse production of hybrid works

A FERVENT SCENARIO

with different formats, platforms, and scales of investment. Multiplatform productions, such as

The historical trajectory of interactive and immer-

Highrise (2009-2017)3 ; web documentary series,

sive digital narrative goes back to the technologies

such as Do Not Track (2016) ; mobile narratives

and experimentations of earlier decades. In this

based in applications, like Alma (2012)5; immersive

book, however, we will concentrate on the last

4

360 videos such as

6x9: A Virtual Experience of

ten years, in which we see a fervent

creative and

Solitary Confinement (2016); and installations

productive scenario, and some already established

which use virtual reality platforms and augmented

milestones.

6

reality applications, like The Enemy (2018) .

Regarding interactive narratives, perhaps the

Some of these productions have been recognized

fundamental reference would be Highrise (2009-2017),

over recent years in prestigious international

a work released in 2010 by Canada’s Katherina Cizek,

screenings and festivals like the IDFA DocLab,

an Emmy award-winning director. This interactive

of the International Documentary Film Festival

documentary, produced by the National Film Board

Amsterdam (IDFA), in Holland, or the Sundance

(NFB), addresses issues about living in large build-

New Frontier Lab, in the USA. The principal

ings around the world. Highrise is actually a group

references have been mapped out by projects such

of projects produced over a series of years, and

as Docubase , of the Massachusetts Institute

became an iconic case for various reasons: for its

of Technology’s (MIT) Open Documentary Lab, a

aesthetic innovation, where the spectator’s path is

freely accessible online database referenced by

driven not only by text or video, but by the very

international curators.

design of its visual collage; for its collaborative

7

8

This article aims to sketch a portrait of

production model, with professionals from 13 cities

the scenario behind the work: producers, festi-

around the world creating the documentary’s content

vals, financers, labs, and research centers. We

in a decentralized manner; and for the fact that

seek to thus give a general vision of the broader

it has become a work permanently in progress, with

context of the emergence and production of the

derivative productions arising later to address the

projects. It is not an exhaustive map. We address

same theme (life in skyscrapers around the world) from new angles. The projects that came after Highrise

3  http://highrise.nfb.ca/. See page 106. 4  www.donottrack-doc.com. See page 111. 5  http://alma.arte.tv.

See page 121.

6  https://www.theguardian.com/world/ng-interactive/2016/ apr/27/6x9-a-virtual-experience-of-solitary-confinement 7  www.theenemyishere.org/ See page 120.

maintained its innovative aspect, whether in terms of narrative, method, or technology, contributing to the development of new frontiers for interactive narratives in general.

8  https://docubase.mit.edu/

THE SCENARIO OF INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ AND MAYRA JUCÁ   ·  10-18

11


Another project from this period is Alma: A

dissemination of Sandra Gaudenzi’s doctoral thesis

Tale of Violence, produced in 2012 by the French

The Living Documentary: from representing reality

group ARTE and by the producer UPIAN. It is a

to co-creating reality in digital interactive

documentary about the violence of Guatemalan

documentary, as well as Arnau Gifreu-Castells’,

street gangs, based on an application for mobile

El Documental Interactivo: evolución, caracteri-

devices. Rider Spoke (2007)9, by the Blast Theory

zación y perspectivas de desarrollo, which became

collective from England, had already used a

theoretical references in the then-incipient field

mobile device to construct a narrative with a

of interactive narrative. At this point, there is

set of geo-referenced audio stories, accessed

a growing interest in these digital works, which

through a bike ride. Whether based on websites,

already do not fit into the traditional audiovisual

applications, or even installations, the truth

genres and categories.

is that, over the last decade, there has been

Nonfictional interactive narrative has expanded

a proliferation of nonfictional, interactive

into different areas, but journalism has had an

narratives which were being classified as inter-

important role in the wider dissemination of these

active documentaries, I-docs, interactive fac-

new possibilities. In 2012, the release of The New

tuals, expanded documentaries, and transmedia

York Times’ interactive report, “Snow Fall”10, led

documentaries, thus generating new categorical

to a more concrete understanding of how an interac-

possibilities, all still in the process of gain-

tive narrative can impact conventional journalism.

ing recognition.

Still centered around a long-form text divided in

These works inaugurated fields of pro-

six parts, the report had a narrative path driven

duction and research with their own concepts,

by a vertically scrolling page, which led to the

as presented in the article “Beyond Interface:

expression “scrollytelling,” and the edition was

fundamental concepts and works in interactive

interspersed with elements from various media (pho-

narrative,” written by André Paz and Katia Augusta

tography, video, sound design, computer graphics,

Maciel for this book. In 2011, for example, in

3D simulations). The story of an avalanche is told

Bristol, England, Judith Aston, Jon Dovey, and

through the spatial exploration of the mountain where

Sandra Gaudenzi organized the first I-Docs,

the disaster occurred, in Seattle, Washington in the

a symposium on interactive narratives linked

United States. The text provides information about

to the namesake research project from Digital

the event, videos enhance the subjective visions of

Cultures Research Center in the University of

the characters, and the scene’s presentation offers

the West of England. In 2012, Mandy Rose joined

interactive possibilities, such as choosing the

the group, and the event became biennial, having

user’s angle of vision of the location and position

been held four more times as of 2018. The book

of each skier at the moment of the disaster. This

I-Docs: The Evolving Practices of Interactive

simple format became a reference which influenced

Documentary, released in 2017 by three of the

later reports. For example, one year later, in

four event organizers (Judith Aston, Sandra

2013, The Guardian released “Firestorm”, also in

Gaudenzi, and Mandy Rose), became an undeniable

“scrollytelling”, but more focused on audiovisual

reference in the field. 2013 saw the defense and

content, and it also received various awards.

10  http://www.nytimes.com/projects/2012/ 9  https://www.blasttheory.co.uk/projects/rider-spoke/

snow-fall/#/?part=tunnel-creek


Journalism has thus become a digital media

report on the Guantanamo Bay penitentiary, which

market that has adopted new languages and media.

earned the cover of the International Documentary

The Guardian and The New York Times, among others,

Magazine. The interactive and immersive work used

stand out as creators, buyers, and disseminators

the Second Life video game to create a virtual

of this format, following a trend which was

version of the prison, where the user could be

already being established and which has been

imprisoned and even suffer torture.

driven by the increasingly affordability of the new technologies.

The dissemination of what we call in this book immersive digital narrative came some years

Through extensive research, the MIT Open

after interactive narratives, when the sale of

Documentary Lab released the publication Mapping

the devices increased, at a lower cost and with

the Intersection of Two Cultures: Interactive

a significantly better user experience. Virtual

Documentary and Digital Journalism in 2015,

reality technologies have existed for decades, with

bringing together a panorama of institutions,

their origins dating back to the 19th century (La

production models, works, professional profiles,

Valle, 2017). Immersive and volumetric narratives

principal stakes, challenges, and tensions. The

are similarly not a recent phenomenon. What we are

study confirms the interest of large media compa-

experiencing, however, is an unprecedented cycle

nies, public and private, in experimenting with

of mass production, marketing, and accessibility of

innovative formats involving diverse platforms,

devices and content, which enhances the possibili-

not only with

interactive, but also immersive

ties for the production and reception of immersive

resources. Part of the Highrise project, “A Short

narrative through the use of headsets adapted to

History of the Highrise” (2013)

watch 360 videos or “virtual reality”.

11

is an example

of this approximation between interactive docu-

The year 2015 was marked by the release of

mentary and digital journalism. Produced through

the Samsung Gear headset (Oculus). In 2016, the

a collaboration between The New York Times and

Oculus Rift came out on the market, allowing for

the National Film Board, the work uses a range

an authentic, virtual reality experience. Large

of content, from historical material taken from

corporations such as Facebook, Google, Sony, and

the newspaper’s archive to content sent in by

Samsung began to invest in virtual reality, which

the public, with the objective of investigating

was seen as a computer platform with infinite

the historical roots of life in vertical towers

possible applications in society.12 From there,

throughout the world.

a large number of immersive narratives began to

In 2009, the renowned American journalist,

arise. The universe of content for these appli-

Nonny De La Peña, who has been published in

cations is very broad, including, for example,

Newsweek, The Times, the Associated Press, and

educational materials and games. Our interest,

The New York Times, became a senior researcher

however, is limited to documentary or artistic

at the University of Southern California and

productions, like those selected for The BUG

initiated the first virtual reality experiences

Exhibition. The chapter, “Immersive Narratives”,

as applied to journalism. In that same year, for

in this book addresses a sample of these produc-

example, she had launched “Gone Gitmo”, a digital

tions. For example, we feature 6x9: A virtual

11  http://www.nytimes.com/projects/2013/high-rise/index.html

12  http://gonegitmo.blogspot.com/2009/03/on-cover-of-documentary-magazine.html

THE SCENARIO OF INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ AND MAYRA JUCÁ   ·  10-18

13


experience of solitary confinement (2016)

It also requires new productive arrangements within

and The Party (2017) , both produced by The

the so-called ‘creative economy’ which make possible

Guardian, demonstrating the adoption of this

the projects and networks which drive technological

format by large media companies.

innovation and aesthetic experimentation. Thus,

13

Radio and TV broadcasters, especially pub-

the production of both interactive and immersive

lic ones such as BBC, in England, RTVE, in Spain,

narratives, especially regarding documentaries and

and the French-German ARTE, have also invested

artistic animations, was initially developed within

in interactive and immersive narrative produc-

the context of certain creative hubs in Europe

tions. These three have established specific

and North America. In these places, a series of

departments for the creation and testing of

initiatives emerged which were connected to each

digital content. Some have invested in innovative

other, creating more fertile, innovative ecosys-

platforms, winning awards and standing out as

tems, such as the first festivals and conferences,

central references in the productive chain of

production companies, events, and emerging markets

documentaries, both interactive and immersive.

for new projects, project financing, universities,

They are also responsible for a growing number

and research centers.

of international co-productions, such as the

Canada is perhaps the country which most stands

docugame Prison Valley14, the result of a co-pro-

out as an “innovative ecosystem”. The aforementioned

duction between the ARTE group and the National

National Film Board (NFB) is internationally rec-

Film Board, that received various awards for

ognized as one of the principal producers and dis-

its innovative approach in which the spectator

tributors of interactive and immersive narratives.

registers, receives an anonymous identity, and

The Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC) is a

traverses through the content as though in a

quite active institution in the country. Founded

game. It even features the ability to make com-

in 1994 in Toronto, the HotDocs Film Festival, one

ments which other visitors can see. This is also

of the largest documentary viewing events in the

the case in Altération, an immersive , virtual

world, began to incorporate interactive and immersive

reality science fiction narrative produced by

digital narrative into the HotDocX program years

ARTE in partnership with Okio.

later. Out of DOC also came docSHIFT, which organizes

15

Although interactive and immersive nar-

the DocSHIFT Summit. In Montreal, universities and

rative works are two distinct fields, when we

producers have developed into a hub of research,

observe from behind the scenes, we notice a series

interactivity, and artistic experimentation. The

of intersections. Situated between audiovisual

Félix & Paul Studios arose in this environment and

production, design, and programming, all these

stands out as one of the most creative and lucrative

productions require not only resources, technical

producers of virtual reality narratives,16 with works

methods, and knowledge of these areas, but also

such as Through the Masks of Luzia17 and Dreams of O18,

the development of new tools, processes, and tech-

with Cirque du Soleil. On the West coast, Vancouver

nical abilities, as well as aesthetic references.

has consolidated itself as a hub for technology and innovation in virtual and augmented reality.

13  www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/oct/07/the-party-avirtual-experience-of-autism-360-video. See page 129. 14  http://prisonvalley.arte.tv/. See page 110.

16  See the interview with one of the Félix & Paul founders on page 77.

15  http://www.okio-studio.com/okio-project1-alteration.html.

17  https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/luzia. See page 127.

See page 132.

18  https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/o See page 127.


Over the last years, a series of festi-

training and mentorship for project development,

vals have contributed to the consolidation of

maintaining a medium-term relationship with those

the scene and demonstrate the recognition of

selected to help them into the market.

interactive and immersive works. In Europe, the

The first studios specialized in interactive

IDFA DocLab in Amsterdam shows and awards doc-

and immersive digital works in virtual reality

umentaries produced in new media and platforms

arose, logically, within these hubs. Upian (Paris);

with two categories: the DocLab Award for Digital

Okio Studio (Paris); Honkytonk Films (Paris);

Storytelling and the Immersive Non-Fiction Award.

Félix & Paul Studios (Montreal and Los Angeles);

It also offers training for project development

Helios Design Labs (Toronto); Submarine Channel

(DocLab Academy), pitching sessions, and has a

(Amsterdam); and Penrose Studios (San Francisco),

line of funding for interactive and immersive

are among the producers who have stood out in the

work, as well as other forms of digital art.

scene, developing original projects, and also com-

Other festivals, such as the Sheffield Doc/Fest

missioned works for advertising, journalism, and

(England), increasingly highlight exhibitions

NGO clients. Beyond these featured players, many

featuring virtual reality and other interac-

small and medium-sized producers have begun to

tive and immersive formats. Even international

dedicate themselves to interactive and immersive

film festivals as prestigious and traditional

projects, seeking out financing through rounds of

as Cannes (France) and Venice (Italy) already

pitching in festivals or attempts at earning new

include specific programs for works on innova-

lines of funding opened by old investors. Tied

tive platforms, with a focus on exhibitions and

to the Tribeca Film Festival, the Tribeca Film

competitive categories exclusively for virtual

Institute, for example, offers a line of funding,

reality works. There are also festivals which have

the TFI New Media Fund, which supports nonfiction

become references for interactive documentaries,

projects addressing contemporary social issues using

including Interdocs Barcelona (Spain), which

the power of storytelling and transmedia on online

currently includes version in Latin American

platforms, video games, and mobile applications,

countries such as Chile and Colombia.

among other formats.

In the United States, the Tribeca Film

For new producers, the labs represent another

Festival was a pioneer - the organizers guar-

opportunity for project development. This refers

anteed that it was the first - when it included

to workshops and training offered at fairs and fes-

an exclusive category for virtual reality works

tivals, such as the already mentioned IDFA DocLab

(Tribeca Immersive) and incorporated online works

Academy and Sundance New Frontier. However, there

and even games in its programming. In 2018, the

are also more extensive programs for accompanying

festival opened a special room for exhibiting

and developing projects, such as the Interactive

immersive works, the Tribeca Cinema360. Just

Documentary Workshop (IDW), in Switzerland, and the

as relevant, the Sundance Festival has the New

!F Lab19, in England. !F Lab, a program created and

Frontier Lab program, which, in 2013, already

coordinated by Sandra Gaudenzi, consists of a series

incorporated augmented reality projects as well

of meetings where specialized coaches offer the

as other forms of interactive and immersive

participants mentorship through directed dynamics

digital narratives. Along the same lines as IDFA DocLab Academy in Amsterdam, New Frontier offers 19  www.iflab.net

THE SCENARIO OF INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ AND MAYRA JUCÁ   ·  10-18

15


and tools, based on a methodology20 which stems

Autorretrato22”, by the same producer, is from 2011.

from the concept of Design Thinking. The program

Marcelo Bauer, founder of the production company, is

is open to producers from various fields and

also responsible for the website webdocumentário.

industries with various professional backgrounds.

com.br, the first website dedicated to spreading new

In this universe of constant innovation,

forms of storytelling in this digital environment.

there is no single production methodology or

Over the subsequent years, a series of projects arose.

process which works as a standard model. Every

Most of them were represented in The BUG Exhibition

project should come up with its own method-

2018 program. It is worth noting the award-winning

ology, its own narrative strategies, and its

transmedia project, The Sound of Bells23 (2014),

own production process. This characteristic

from Estúdio Crua, includes a web documentary, a

further emphasizes the relevance of project

feature-length documentary, an application for mobile

development laboratories, as well as the role

devices, a sound map, and traveling projections. The

of research centers and universities in con-

project elaborates on the traditional bell sounds

structing “innovative ecosystems”. It is worth

from historical churches in the state of Minas

once more noting the initiatives being produced

Gerais, Brazil.

by the Open Documentary Lab of MIT, such as the

As is common in Latin America, the Brazilian

aforementioned Docubase, events like Virtually

producers tend to be socially engaged, and much

There, studies such as Mapping the Intersection

of the work is financed with resources from civil

of Two Cultures: Interactive Documentary and

society organizations, private foundations with

Digital Journalism, and the Institute’s art-

funding programs for campaigns and social projects,

ist-in-residence program.

or public grants for social initiatives. This was the case for The Sound of Bells the collaborative platform Meu Rio Vale um Webdoc24 (2016), and the

BRAZIL SCENARIO: BUG404

interactive documentary Ilha Grande: cada praia uma

ilha, cada ilha uma história25 (2016). The same is Over the last decade, interactive and immer-

observed in relation to documentaries with immersive

sive narrative production has extended beyond

narratives, which began to arise in Brazil start-

the regions of Europe and North America. In

ing in 2016, the year of River of Mud: The Worst

the second chapter of this book, Arnau Gifreu-

Environmental Disaster in Brazil, by the producer,

Castells sketches an updated map in his arti-

Junglebee. Along the same lines, Fogo na Floresta,

cle, “Modern Development of the Interactive and

from the same producer, and Amazônia Adentro (2017)

Transmedia Documentary in the Americas, Europe,

and My Africa (2018)26, both by the NGO Conservation

and Australia”. In Brazil, the first interactive

International and co-produced with partners.

documentaries arose at the beginning of the decade.

At the end of 2017, a group of profession-

“Filhos do Tremor - Crianças e seus Direitos em um

als, supported by companies, gathered to create

Haiti Devastado21”, by the producer CrossContent, was released in 2010, for example. “Rio de Janeiro,

22  www.riodejaneiroautorretrato.com.br See page 109. 23  http://www.somdossinos.com.br/. See the interview with the cre-

20  Sanda Gaudenzi wrote an article and did an interview about

ators of The Sound of Bells, in Chapter 2.

the methodology of !F Lab and the creative process of interac-

24  http://www.meuriovaleumwebdoc.com.br/. See page 117.

tive narrative. See pages X - Y.

25  http://ilhagrandewebdoc.website/. See page 108.

21  http://www.webdocumentario.com.br/haiti/

26  www.conservacao.org.br/myafrica. See page 125.


a Brazilian community of entrepreneurs working

proposals. It is a question of

in the X-Reality (Virtual Reality, Augmented

ground to technological innovation and aesthetic

Reality, and Mixed Reality - known as XR)

and linguistic experimentations, which require the

market. In February 2018, the XRBR foundation

cooperation between producers and research centers,

was formed, a “Brazilian Hub for X-Reality”.

databases, festivals, and channels of information

The nonprofit initiative aims to connect links

related to this incipient and promising field.”

in the creative and productive chain through

(Paz and Salles, 2015: p. 157)

creating fertile

experience exchange among professionals, entre-

This diagnosis was the central motivation

preneurs, researchers, administrators, and

for founding Bug404 (bug404.net), a portal and

financers. The hub gathers together all the

network for dialogue and collaboration between

possible applications of XR, representing a

researchers and producers which aims to contribute

far wider universe than that covered by The

to the dissemination of interactive and immersive

Bug Exhibition and this book. However, it is

narratives in Brazil, especially in the sense of

an auspicious sign for development of an “inno-

supporting the design, development, and production

vative ecosystem” in the immersive narrative

of new projects. The idea is to encourage coordi-

field, as defined here.

nation between universities and different actors:

Although it seems to be blessed with a

artists, producers, administrators, and the public.

promising future, the current production of

The project began with the promotion of specialized

immersive narratives in Brazil has not kept up

content on social media and websites, coordinating

with the volume and sophistication of produc-

academics from different universities, audiovisual

tion in international hubs. However, if we look

producers, and all those interested from various

beyond the interface, we notice the wealth of

professional areas, who have come to collaborate

creative proposals, produced with limited finan-

with the production of textual content, events,

cial resources. The incipient Brazilian scene

and opportunities for technical or scientific part-

is based on the initiative of entrepreneurs who

nerships around interactive documentaries, virtual

work with small teams and limited budgets, with-

reality, docugames, and mobile narratives.

out a structure to drive the projects, such as

Bug404 quickly diversified its actions while

festivals, appropriate lines of funding, and the

following the same principles. At the Federal

cooperation of large businesses. The diagnosis

University of Rio de Janeiro State (UNIRIO), the

presented in 2015 by André Paz and Julia Salles,

extension program, BugLab, supports meetings between

in an article on interactive documentaries in

producers and interested parties throughout Brazil,

Brazil, continues to be relevant today, and can

holds workshops and promotional events. Researchers

easily be expanded here to immersive narratives:

and students created the project, BugBrasil, an

“It becomes necessary not only an effort at

initial map of the field of national interactive

[boosting] communication between the main actors

and immersive narratives, and translated Docubase

in this area (producers, researchers, critics,

into Portuguese, in collaboration with the MIT Open

and the public), but also the dissemination of

Documentary Lab. The partnership with Arnau Gifreu-

international references, as much in the sense

Castells led to the translation, subtitling, and

of works, productive processes, procedures,

dissemination of the interactive meta-documentary

and strategies, as in discussions and aesthetic

COME/IN/DOC. In one of the São Paulo workshops,

THE SCENARIO OF INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVE  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ AND MAYRA JUCÁ   ·  10-18

17


in partnership with the Kinoforum Association, Bug404 is a facilitator in developing a hackathon-style web documentary, an opportunity which coordinates a group of creative professionals around the proposal of producing a project in

LEVY, Pierre. A inteligência coletiva: por uma antropologia do ciberespaço (1994). 3. ed. São Paulo: Loyola, 2000. ___________. Cibercultura (1997). São Paulo: Editora 34, 1999. 260 p MIT Open Documentary Lab. Virtually There. Documentary Meets Virtual Reality. A Conference Presented by The Mit Open Documentary Lab, The John D and Catherine T. Macarthur Foundation and The Phi Centre, 2016a.

seven days. After achieving their goal with the release of the webdoc Pedalei até Aqui?27, some of the participants went on to found Crop Coletivo28, in São Paulo, which is dedicated to interactive documentaries. In 2018, in partnership with the cultural production company Automatica, and with financing from the Oi Futuro Cultural Center, Bug404 developed the proposal for The BUG Exhibition, the first event promoting interactive and immersive narrative in Brazil, with more than 50 selected works, including a conference and various workshops. Both the Exhibition and this book were organized as an introduction to the field, and as a contribution towards strengthening our “ecosystem” for the production of new projects. The authors gathered here are partners in an endeavor which, beyond simply documenting and mapping a scenario, aims to contribute towards an ample dialog between those who work within it: curators, researchers, producers, artists, and the public.

REFERENCES

GAUDENZI, Sandra (2013). The Living Documentary: from representing reality to co-creating reality in digital interactive documentary. Doctoral Thesis, Goldsmiths College, University of London.

GIFREU-CASTELLS, Arnau (2013). El Documental Interactivo: evolución, caracterización y perspectivas de desarrollo. Barcelona: UOCPress.

JENKINS, H. Convergence Culture: Where Old and NYU Press, 2006. New Media Collide. New York:

LAVALLE, Steven M. Virtual Reality. Cambridge, Mass: Cambridge University Press, 2017.

27  http://www.bug404.net/pedalei/. See page 119. 28  http://www.cropcoletivo.com.br/

MIT Open Documentary Lab. Mapping the Intersection of Two Cultures: Interactive Documentary and Digital Journalism. A Report supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, 2016b. Murray, J. Hamlet no holodeck: o futuro da narrativa no ciberespaço. São Paulo: Itaú Cultural; UNESP, 2003. Paz, André and Júlia Salles. “Brasil, Mostra a sua Cara: aproximações ao cenário brasileiro de documentários interativos”. Revista Doc On Line 18 (2015): 130-165. http:// www.doc.ubi.pt/.


When Sandra Gaudenzi began accompanying the field of interactive narrative, the fashionable term was ‘multimedia’. After that came ‘cross-media’ narrative,

and

later

‘transmedia’

narrative.

“We’ve already been through so many different terms I don’t even remember them all,” she jokes. When she wrote her doctoral thesis2 ten years ago, she used the term ‘interactive documentary’. She

OVERVIEW

was unsatisfied, however, because she believed that the concept of ‘interactive documentary’ meant more than just a project which came from

TAKING INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES ‘OUT OF THE BOX’: A CONVERSATION WITH SANDRA GAUDENZI

the universe of documentaries. Her search for a more ‘inclusive’ term brought her to the concept of ‘interactive factual narrative’, or simply ‘interactive factuals’. Sandra began her career as a TV producer, but shifted to academia, specializing in interactive digital narratives, and is now a senior professor at the new Digital and Interactive Storytelling LAB, in the University of Westminster in England, “a place for exploring, experimenting, and stand-

BY ANDRÉ PAZ1

ing out through the different approaches to storytelling in our digital culture.” She created the !F Lab3 (Interactive Factual Lab), a creative training

program

which

incubates

projects

and

where creators receive support to make a prototype. She is the author of books and articles, coordinates i-Docs, the principal academic event dedicated exclusively to the theme, and she provides consultant work and gives lectures. In

our

conversation

in

London,

in

March

2018

during the days following the i-Docs conference in Bristol, which we both participated, Sandra 1 André Paz is a professor and researcher at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro State (UNIRIO). He teaches in the Professional Masters of Digital Creation and Production at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). Director and producer of interactive narratives. Founder and coordinator of Bug404. Curator of THE BUG EXHIBITION in 2018.

better explains what led her to define her own terminology and develops her vision on “interactive factuals”. 2  Sandra Gaudenzi’s thesis, “ The Living Documentary: from representing reality to co-creating reality in digital interactive documentary”, is available at http://www.interactivefactual.net/phd/ 3  http://www.iflab.net/

BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 19


technology. I emphasize interactivity, because,

THERE ARE MANY TERMS IN THE INTERACTIVE FIELD. YOU PREFER TO USE THE TERM ‘INTERACTIVE FACTUAL NARRATIVE’. WHY DO YOU USE THIS TERM AND WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO YOU? Well, as you know, in any emerging field the terminology keeps changing all the time. So, it’s always a choice of whether you accept the trendy

to me, if you post your journalistic material or documentary on the internet, on YouTube, you are definitely creating a digital narrative, not an interactive one. For it to be interactive you need to allow the user some capacity for agency, and, starting at this point, I think a different product emerges.

word of the moment, or whether you try to create your own terminology. The reason I’ve been using interactive

factual,

probably

over

the

last,

HOW DO YOU SEE THE EMERGENCE OF THIS NEW FIELD, HISTORICALLY?

let’s say, four to five years, is because I had noticed that keeping ‘interactive’ and ‘documen-

The

tary’ was misleading for a lot of people who were

factual is very much linked to the emergence

emergence

not coming from the documentary field.

of the web. When web 2.0 allowed some sort of participatory,

of

the

field

collaborative,

of

and

interactive

individual

If you’re working in education and you’re making

content creation, probably around the year 2000,

an interactive app about ancient history, you

2005, at the very beginning of Wikipedia, at the

normally don’t think that you’re doing an inter-

beginning of YouTube.

active documentary, because most people would

idea that the internet could be a place for

say “oh but I don’t work in documentary”. The

freedom, where people could express themselves,

same goes for journalists, there is a big field

post their content. It’s when, suddenly there

of interactive journalism and digital journalism

is this huge increase in content which comes

that is happening now, and none of those people

from people talking about their lives, and are

would recognize themselves and their work as

effectively creating factual, digital content.

Therein was born this

being part of ‘interactive documentary’ because they were stuck with the word ‘documentary.’ And

The more the web advanced, and we left behind

this is why I decided to change it and to make

the

it a wider definition, ‘interactive factual’,

DVDs were the grandfathers of interactive nar-

which is the word that I use and I think pretty

ratives- the moment the webpage and broadband,

much the whole group at i-Docs that I collabo-

so the ability of having a lot of video content

rate with are using as a word.

online arrived, then this is where journals,

CD-ROM

newspapers,

era

-which

obviously

broadcasters,

CD-ROMs

educational

and

fields,

And it’s just a way to be as inclusive as pos-

open universities, everybody started thinking

sible, so that people who come maybe even from

“hang on - this is a whole new field. This is a

the arts, and who are doing nonfiction by using

place where nonfictional content can be exposed

HoloLenses or VR, could also be able to think

and given to people, and since it allows for

that they are doing an interactive factual. So

interactivity, why not use it?”

it’s about broadening the fields, and the only real distinction here becomes, you know, not

So the moment big newspapers like The Guardian

being purely fictional and using some interactive

and The New York Times, (about ten years ago)


is

when Oculus Rift managed to produce some rea-

not on paper, but online - they start to have

sonably priced headsets, and second, when they

a choice: do we want to just put our linear

solved the problem of motion sickness, which

stories which are text-based, and we want to

was still a big issue if you wanted to make it

put them online (because the web is just a way

a mass market medium. And this only happened,

to distribute it) or do we want to use what the

I would say, four years ago. Actually it was

medium can do, which is, to allow a back and

the result of a lot of work by journalist Nonny

forth, a feedback loop, and the possibility of

De La Peña, who was involved in VR and digital

involving people in the story? And clearly,

journalism. Part of her research led gradually

there was a gradual opening towards the sec-

to the Oculus Rift, which then suddenly became

ond option, which is to use the medium’s full

viable for the market.

start

thinking

the

future

of

journalism

potential.

And now all we’ve been hearing about over the

And so I think it is a gradual evolution which

last three years are people thinking “oh, we

probably means that when the web started a good

have a new technology, it’s affordable, they

fifteen years ago (the way we see it now- as a

need content, let’s jump into this new thing and

participatory tool), that was when interactive

let’s produce content - whether it’s fiction or

narrative started, and the industry has increas-

nonfiction and factual, whether it’s education,

ingly come to understand that this is the new

porn, or training”, so yes there is a boom and

way to be.

yes that is a big trend.

Actually, over the last five years, that’s where

All this being said, in terms of VR headsets sold

I think we really started seeing big projects.

worldwide, we’re actually still very far from a

Television’s getting into the field, and even

real new medium which is commercially available

film funding agencies are starting to create

for everybody. For now, what we’re seeing is

some interactive film funding agencies, at the

that the adoption curve is actually starting

national level, all over the world, as well as

to go down, it is not going as predicted. So

agencies for interactive games, to create more

we will see what happens with VR and I think,

of this kind of content.

as often happens, this is more about commercial realities and market developments, than about how we can use it (VR) from a creative point of

OVER THE PAST 2 YEARS, VR HAS EMERGED AS AN INCREASINGLY ATTRACTIVE NARRATIVE POSSIBILITY. WHAT IS YOUR OPINION ON IT?

view. I’ve been noticing that these trends are very short. Over the past two years, we were thinking

To start with, virtual reality has been around

about VR, but now the buzzword is already ‘aug-

for at least 25 years. Those who follow the work

mented reality’, because they’re talking about

of Jaron Lanier know that, in the 80s, there

the HoloLenses, about Microsoft coming up with

was a huge boom, and that virtual reality was

mixed reality headsets, so we’re already moving

possible, but the real problem was its cost.

on to the next new thing.

What really changed the VR equation was, first,

TAKING INTERACTIVE NARRATIVAS OUT OF THE BOX…  ·  BY ANDRÉ PAZ   ·  19-23

21


My feeling is that the technology is ready to be

docs. This becomes clear because broadcasters

cheap enough to go in a direction where it will

were investing in them, we know this because

create a mass market. I don’t think VR will be

newspapers did quite a few of them, and now we

the queen of this market segment, it will only

don’t talk about them anymore. But that doesn’t

be a small part of it. I think, in the long term,

mean that they don’t exist, it just means that

they’re going to develop things that you can

they’re no longer a novelty, it means that our

either use as VR or as AR, augmented reality,

media system now needs to speak about virtual

and so we still need to see a lot of new headsets

reality, because it needs to feed into this idea

which are going maybe to go more towards what

of innovation. But it also means to me that, in

Google was trying to do with Google Glass. And

the meantime, web docs, long-form journalism,

yes, over the next ten years this is going to

which uses the web to do long articles that are

evolve and there will definitely be a market,

media rich with video, etc., are now becoming

but I don’t think it will be the only market.

the norm. And this is how we consume a lot of

Just like mobile platforms and mobile phones have so much importance in our lives, this is

our news when we’re using the apps of the main broadcasters.

where people really consume their content at

And therefore the web doc is not dead, it is

the moment, and so for the next five years we

actually now part of our culture. We just don’t

still have a lot of those platforms, and VR, AR

call them web docs anymore. We don’t need a new

(augmented reality), MR, XR (extended reality),

name for it, they’re all around us, and we use

whatever you want to call it, is only going to

them all the time. Any website that is a little

be, you know, something for the early adopters.

more exciting and complicated than just text, that has chapters, stories, interviews, sound, video, is effectively a web doc - we just don’t

THERE ARE THOSE WHO SAY THAT THE WEB DOCUMENTARY IS DEAD. WHAT DO YOU THINK? What I love about the history of innovation is that things are new until people get used to them, and then they suddenly become old. So if you think about electricity and the toaster, these products were seen as innovations for a fairly short period of time, and yet they have revolutionized the way we live. I think it’s exactly the same with web docs. The moment when web docs were new, in the sense that no one had seen them before, that moment has probably already passed.

call it that anymore.

FROM A WIDER PERSPECTIVE, WHAT, IN YOUR VIEW, ARE THE MAIN CHALLENGES TO DEVELOPING THE INTERACTIVE FACTUAL FIELD IN GENERAL? Well, developing the field of interactive factual pretty much boils down to the amount of money invested in it. I think the big institutions, whether

broadcasters,

newspapers,

educators,

universities, or national innovation funds, all have their role to play. And they need to invest in it, because this is the future. But what I’m

I would say that seven years ago, around the

seeing is that a lot of big players are resisting

year 2010, there were maybe seven, and between

it, and this is normal. If you have a newspaper

2010 to 2013 or 2014, there were a lot of web

and you have spent your whole life investing in


a certain knowhow about linear storytelling, and

when they will switch on, because there will

that’s where your strength lies, the fact that

be a reality check: either we jump or we die.

you suddenly need to adapt to a different way of telling stories is actually quite threatening. So I totally understand that there is a tendency to be conservative and to say no-no-no, let’s not go there because if we start investing

in

innovation

and

changing

our

way

of

doing storytelling, then we really radically have to change. So there is a tendency to stay within what we know now, hoping that things are

not

going

to

change

too

fast

and

that

therefore, you know, we’re safe.

IS THERE ANYTHING THAT YOU’D LIKE TO SAY SPECIFICALLY TO THE BRAZILIAN AUDIENCE? Well, the first thing I would like to say is that I would like to see more Brazilian projects. I know about a few of them, a very small few, and I’m sure there is a lot happening in Brazil, so why are there not more Brazilian projects

reaching

the

international

level?

The second thing I would like to say is that

But at the same time I think the market is

I think the interactive world is still very

going

where

much what we call a cottage industry, meaning

broadcasters, newspapers that don’t change are

to

come

you can really cook with your own ingredients,

going to die off. I mean, I have kids, they’re

so you don’t always need to do a master chef-

teenagers,

actually

style meal, you can make, you know, a very

switched on our television. The television in

exciting meal with things that no one would

our house is dead. It doesn’t mean that they

even think to put together.

none

up

of

against

them

a

reality

have

ever

don’t consume content, they just consume it online, and they consume it with a different logic.

Broadcasters

need

to

know

this,

and

if anybody wants those kids to, you know, be involved with the world, read the news, engage with any kind of movement, they need to understand the way kids want to consume information and storytelling.

And so I think in the open source movement there is huge margin for very clever and talented young people, who are not coming from a defined industry - so people who are not thinking “oh I’m only a musician, or I’m only a filmmaker, or I’m only a photographer”. I think people who are twenty years old today and know a little bit about coding, they know that coding is a point

So I think we are at an interesting moment

of entrance to all of those fields. And I think

where, in order to have this field evolve,

that is where we’ll find the talent. I think

we need massive investments, and people are

that’s where people can be hugely creative with

moving

we’re

often very little resources. And what I would

seeing is a sort of resistance which I think

really love is to see this incredible creative

is going to be quite short - where people,

energy that Brazilians have for music for, you

I think, and big institutions are going to

know, Carnival, and so many other things, to

start to lose their audience, and that is

be applied to the interactive field, because

in

that

direction,

but

what

I’m sure it’s there, it just needs to take on a bolder form.

TAKING INTERACTIVE NARRATIVAS OUT OF THE BOX…  ·  BY ANDRÉ PAZ   ·  19-23

23


Most of us agree that stories have the fundamental role of helping us making sense of our world (Bruner, 1986). During our lifetime, we need to learn several of the world’s patterns to be able

OVERVIEW

to navigate it, and in this context stories are a handy way to remember, and explain, patterns through the logic of our parents and cultural environment. Stories clarify our being and make us belong. Some psychologists even go as far as to say

MOVING FROM LINEAR TO DIGITAL INTERACTIVE STORIES: A SHIFTING WORLD THAT DEMANDS SEVERAL MIND SHIFTS

that we even use stories to understand ourselves, our inner world, and to find some coherence within our multiple personalities (McAdams, 1993).

The

reason is that “linear stories have the advantage of making complex things simple” (Thalhofer, 2018:106). Since linear storytelling is based on a causal logic - this happened, then this other thing happened - it favors our understanding of a deterministic world, where things are processable and predictable, since they always come to a single end. The issue is that “most frequently, things don’t cause each other, they influence each other” (ibidem). So could linear storytelling be

SANDRA GAUDENZI1

responsible for misleading us into a simplified explanation of the world? There are further complications: the world is becoming increasingly unpredictable. Twenty years of digital technology have changed the world so much that we are now asked to be constantly “innovative” and “fluid” in our approach, meaning that the past learnings are not considered that useful anymore. Two centuries ago, when most kids

1  Sandra Gaudenzi is the Head of Studies of !F Lab (Interactive Factual Lab). She has been consulting, mentoring, researching, lecturing, writing, speaking and blogging about interactive factual narratives for the last twenty years. She is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Westminster’s Digital and Interactive Storytelling LAB; visiting Fellow at the Digital Cultures Research Centre (UWE, UK); co-director of the i-Docs conference and website, and co-editor of the book: i-docs: the Evolving Practices of Interactive Documentary.

were their parents’ work apprentices, that was not the case. So what happens to storytelling in this century’s rapidly evolving digital landscape? Media history shows us that storytelling always adapts to allow us to keep up with the times. It happened with books, movies, television, and now again with the web. Storytelling helps us to explain, but also to shape, the world we live in. Media, technology and society are connected in

BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 24


mutually influential ways. It is no surprise then

a horse. Digital media allow you to do much more,

that today an associative medium such as the web

why not embrace it? Mobile technology allows you

is opening new storytelling options, stretching

to connect subjects and give them a direct voice.

the causal logic of film and books. The Open Work

How can you use this as a creative force in your

(Eco, 1962) and the film avant-gardes of the

projects? Will you build communities, or adopt

20th century - which wanted to break free from

co-creation strategies and accept less authorship

the single author and the Aristotelian narrative

of your own stories? Interactive media allow you

form - have finally found a medium that sets them

to involve your audiences by giving them the power

free: the open World Wide Web. Digital media

to choose, browse, change, comment or add to your

reflect our times. In a less certain world, our

stories. This power is the agency you give to your

modern stories need to help us deal with our

users. How will you use it? Which boundaries of

uncertainties. As a result,

we feel the need to

action are you going to create for them? What will

create open stories that can fluctuate, adapt,

they learn from it? Different digital platforms

be shared, be co-authored and, sometimes, have

will cater to different interactivity types and

more than a single ending.

levels. Which level of interaction, and platform,

I am not saying here that films are dead,

is suitable for your story?

but just that digital interactive media is offer-

These choices are both the opportunities and

ing us a platform to explore our complex, rapidly

the dilemmas of our new digital world: we have more

changing and multi-vocal world. In the words

freedom and choices than ever before, but where are

of screen media theorist Patricia Zimmermann:

the limits of such choices, what can we do with them, and how do they shape the author/subject/audience

Polyphonic new media strategies reject the singular author, the unique voice, the final interpretation. Instead, these works operate as technologies, systems, and practices to bring together many voices that open up space for complex ideas and participatory exchanges to develop in unexpected ways through convenings (2018:10).

relationship? Stepping into digital storytelling is about moving into a new form of narrative all together that questions our shared world. We can make use of constantly evolving types of digital platforms (mobile phone, tablet, computer, VR, AR, holograms, etc.) and extend our definition of storytelling well beyond the Aristotelian beginning/ middle/ending structure. Ultimately, it is about standing for a position in our open digital world. Choosing an interactive form, rather than a linear one, is a statement in itself. It is about embracing the mind shifts that will allow you to detach yourselves from the illusion of a predictable and causal world and move into a more fluid, sometimes unpredictable, space of action.

My message to media producers is the following:

When I came to the realization that story-

using the web as a world distribution platform

tellers were struggling to embrace interactiv-

for your videos is a good start, but it is a

ity for reasons that were more complex than lack

little like using a car to go at the speed of

of technological skills, I decided to create a

MOVING FROM LINEAR TO DIGITAL INTERACTIVE STORIES: A SHIFTING ...  ·  SANDRA GAUDENZI   ·  24-31

25


workshop that would question and remix autho-

workshops, having two-month periods of rest in

rial beliefs, audio-visual media practices and

between them for teams to actualize the decisions

digital ideation techniques. The idea behind

made during the workshops. In the last iteration

what then became !F Lab (Interactive Factual

of !F Lab, the first five-day long workshop, Story

Lab) was to create a space for storytellers to

Booster, would get all the participants together

see interactive media as a space of freedom, to

and the !F Lab team would lead them to transition

embrace fluidity as a strategy of co-creation,

from an initial concept to a fully-fledged paper

and ultimately conceive projects that reflect

prototype of their interactive idea. Participants

our shared world, fears and hopes.

would then go back to their respective countries and had to do research on their audiences, test their ideas, iterate their concept and come prepared to

!F LAB AND THE WHAT IF IT PROCESS

the following workshop, Prototype Booster. This second five-day workshop was conceived to support

!F Lab (Interactive Factual Lab) is an EU funded

teams while they transformed their paper prototype

training workshop produced by social innovation

into a fully working digital prototype. In order

agency iDrops, which I co-initiated in 2015. !F

to do so, a three day Prototype Jam was organized,

Lab’s aim was to enable talented creatives to tell

where external coders and designers joined the teams

impactful stories using digital technology and to

and helped them build a first digital version of

push the industry forward. The context in which

their project. This hackathon atmosphere pushed

it acted was the early adoption of interactive

participants to share their ideas with newcomers

narratives from the “big players” (broadcasters

and to accept influences coming from totally dif-

such as Arte, BBC, SBS, and newspapers such as

ferent fields and expertise. This was not always

The New York Times and The Guardian) that had

easy, but in most cases, it has been an eye opener

started around the year 2008. The problem was

on the

that little was shared about their production

interactive production.

fundamentally pluri-disciplinary nature of

practices, and small audio-visual companies

What I have observed during my experience as

had difficulty entering the field. Aware of the

Head of Studies of !F Lab, is that embarking on the

difficulties faced by creative producers when

creation of an interactive project is both exciting

embarking on unknown territories, our objectives

and frightening, and therefore the challenge is

at !F Lab were simple: 1. To help the development

to create the right atmosphere for people to feel

of innovative forms of digital storytelling by

inspired, challenged, supported, and yet still

mentoring new projects. 2. Research the best

totally free.

production practices for the industry by testing

sentations, hands-on work for projects and caring

them. Between 2015 and 2018 !F Lab has guided

one-to-one mentoring. To make sure that all projects

72 participants from 25 countries, and invited

would go through the same development process, we

top digital creative experts from all over the

created two types of learning tools: cards and

world to share their knowledge with us.

canvases. Cards were mini-lectures delivered by our

At !F Lab, we did so by mixing pre-

The structure of !F Lab changed over the

coaches, while canvases were conceived as practical

years, but the essential logic was to incubate

exercises to help each team make decisions related

projects through a series of hands-on group

to their own projects and move on to the next step.


Going from a mini-lecture to its actualization through a hands-on exercise provided the right balance of guidance and freedom that we were looking for. We called this process the WHAT IF IT process, as it starts from a question (WHAT is my concept?) then asks you to Interact with your audience (hence the “I”), then to Formulate your challenge and impact (“F”), to Ideate through prototyping (hence the “I”) and finally to Test

IMAGE 2. CARDS AND CANVASES OF THE WHAT IF

it (“T”) before starting again.

IT PROCESS (HTTP://WWW.IFLAB.NET/)

IMAGE 1. THE 5 PHASES OF THE WHAT IF IT PROCESS (HTTP://WWW.IFLAB.NET/)

IMAGE 3. EXAMPLE OF CANVAS: THE CONCEPT CANVAS (HTTP://WWW.IFLAB.NET/)

The WHAT IF IT process is a methodology that can be

While I clearly encourage you to download The !F Lab

used by any person starting an interactive produc-

Field Guide to Interactive Storytelling Ideation2

tion as it does not need any technical knowledge.

and try it for yourself, I also want to remind you

It is based on a few fundamental principles, which

that no methodology is set in stone and that it is

I believe are good guidelines to produce innovative

conceived to help you, not to limit you. Please

interactive narratives: start from the user, have

experiment with it, and change it according to

a clear purpose (or impact) for your project,

your needs and professional environment. I have

work with a multi-disciplinary team from day one

done so myself.

and embrace an iterative user-centered production

In 2017, I was contacted by Professor André

process. To give you an idea, here is the overview

Paz from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro

of all the supporting material we used during the

to see if we could adapt the WHAT IF IT process to

workshops, followed by one example of the canvas

the Brazilian context. Thanks to the support of

that we used to help participants pin down the exact “concept” of their project.

2  http://www.iflab.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/The-F-Lab-FieldGuide.pdf

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27


The British Academy’s Newton Mobility Grant, we

cost? Clearly there is no single magic answer, and

embarked on a one year research project aimed at

the options are so many that it can be overwhelming.

iterating our process into what we called the IF

Our learning from !F Lab, and IF BUGLAB, is

BUGLAB: a four-day interactive ideation process

that instead of wanting to make all the decisions

designed for Brazilian audio-visual producers.

alone on day one,

Taking on board the relative novelty of the

that the answers will impose themselves, and emerge

interactive narrative field in Brazil, and the

as evidence, if one follows a creative development

consequent lack of financial resources, IF BUGLAB

process. My proposition is therefore to engage

put a strong emphasis on production resources

with a series of mental shifts that open you up

while keeping the fundamental iterative nature of

to new digital challenges, and then observe what

the WHAT IF IT process. Through this experiment,

comes out from engaging with such a process. You

we were effectively testing the flexibility and

will notice these mental shifts go hand in hand

it is more beneficial to trust

malleability of ideation processes. Our finding

with the WHAT IF IT process, although here we use

is that although processes have to adapt to their

a slightly different terminology:

cultural and economic contexts, their backbone can be stable and relatively unchanged. In the case of the WHAT IF IT process, this meant keeping the main phases and itera-

1. PUT THE USER AT THE CENTER OF YOUR CREATIVE PROCESS

tive nature of the process, while changing the emphasis given to them. In other words, what

(Murray, 1997:126). If the users are not curious

never changed is the view that interactive ide-

to explore the options you have designed for them,

ation is not linear and requires a series of

you have failed to engage them. While we have all

mind shifts, a series of clicks that make you

watched a TV show that did not interest us by pure

see the world, your work, and your role in it,

laziness and inertia, in interactive media the

in a new way. In what follows, I have tried to

story does not move further if we do not interact

go back to the essence of each phase of the WHAT

with it, so… end of our story. For this specific

IF IT process, added what I learned in Brazil,

reason, you should enter in a frame of mind where

and ended up with a list of guidelines that I

you design with your audience, and not for your

hope will be of use to you.

audience. This is the fundamental ethos of UserCentered Design (UCD), a branch of Design Thinking that starts the design of any product, service or

GUIDELINES, OR MIND SHIFTS, FOR

experience by studying and engaging with its final

THE PRODUCTION OF INNOVATIVE

user. For Donald Norman, the first designer to have

INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES

used this term, “user-centered design emphasizes that the purpose of the system is to serve the

When you start an interactive narrative, you are

user, not to use a specific technology, not to be

confronted with an array of questions: which

an elegant piece of programming” (Norman, 1998:61).

platform should I choose? How will I organize my

If you look carefully at the WHAT IF IT process

story? Which part should be interactive? Which

(image 1), you will see that we have accommodated

technical skills do I need? How much will it

the five phases of UCD to the needs of interactive


storytellers. Phase two is Interact with your

a launch strategy and some solid partners. While

user, meaning: test your concept by interviewing

we encourage you to look for your partners from day

your target audience, learn which platforms they

one, we also know that if you have nothing to show

use and what they know about your topic before

them it is difficult to involve them. You are in a

even starting your ideation process. After having

chicken-and-egg situation where you need a prototype

done so, you can start working on an initial

to explain your idea, but you also need help to

paper prototype of your concept that you will

create your first prototype. Our suggestion is to

test, again, with your target audience. This

move in incremental shifts where story development

is the beginning of a two-way iterative process

and research on partners move hand in hand. The

between you and your audience.

more you progress with your idea the more you can

As strange as this might seem, this sin-

show it to different people and ask for their help.

gle mind shift has been the most difficult, and

For you to be credible in this delicate bal-

probably most precious, learning experience

ancing act, you need to be prepared and on top of

for the !F Lab participants that were coming

your game. Never underestimate the importance of

from audio-visual production. They were used to

having checked who else has addressed your topic

starting from their own idea and then rolling

using linear and interactive narratives:

into production once they had the approval of their commissioning editor. Convincing them that empathizing with their audience from the start is not only the best way to challenge their own preconceptions, but also a fundamental step to keep their audience engaged, and ultimately to generate clever out-of-the-box ideas, has needed a try-it-yourself attitude.

• Have a series of comparative points between what you want to do and what others have done already. • Why is interactivity essential to engage your selected audience? • Be aware of existing trends in interactive narratives. When the “next technology” starts to be passé, you need to justify why you are using it.

2.

DO YOUR RESEARCH

A lot of people want to create an interactive narrative because they think it will allow them

• You also should be able to place your project within the different styles of interactive narratives that already exist. After all, you are the specialist… are you not?

to bypass closed distribution networks and reach

This book is a first resource to help you do your

a larger audience. This is a false expectation.

comparative analysis, but also keep in mind other

Your project might be online, but if no one knows

existing online resources such as MIT Docubase3,

about it, you effectively have no audience. The

IDFA DocLab4 and i-Docs5.

mind shift needed here is the following: do not expect audiences to come to you, it is your job to attract them. Ensuring you will have an audience often boils down to having a promotion budget to spend, but it also means that you need to have

3  http://docubase.mit.edu 4  http://www.doclab.org/category/projects/ 5  http://i-docs.org/

MOVING FROM LINEAR TO DIGITAL INTERACTIVE STORIES: A SHIFTING ...  ·  SANDRA GAUDENZI   ·  24-31

29


3. EMBRACE MULTI-DISCIPLINARY TEAMS AND ITERATIVE PRODUCTION

The recently created MIT Co-Creation Studio6 emphasizes that “co-creation offers alternatives to a single authored vision. It’s a constellation

It is challenging to be a one-man band in digital

of media methods and frameworks. Projects emerge

productions. The skill sets that you need to have

out of process, and evolve from within commu-

between content production, design and coding

nities and with people, rather than being made

are still too different for one person to do it

for or about them”. Visiting their website will

all well. So accept the following mind shift:

give you ideas and resources to help elaborate

you need help, and you need help from people

projects where impact is co-designed with the

that come from different industries, hence they

communities it targets.

will be used for a completely different process and language when working in groups. We cannot stress enough the importance of hav-

5. HAVE A CLEAR IMPACT STRATEGY

ing a multi-disciplinary team from day one. It might be difficult at the beginning, but it will pay off

Think of impact as the shift you want your user to

when you will realize that they come up with ideas

have throughout the experience of your project. See

and solutions you could not imagine yourself. To

it as a before and after list. If there are specific

solve the problem of having different approaches to

changes you want to make happen (gaining awareness by

work, we suggest you choose a series of steps that

learning about your topic, feeling a specific emotion,

will lead you to the production of a first prototype

doing something like signing a petition, or more) you

(also known as a Minimum Viable Product), and to

have to design towards them. Your user journey needs

commit to it as a team. This first prototype, once

to bring the audience where you want it to go (see

tested with your audience, will be your best ally

the User’s Impact Canvas in the WHAT IF IT process).

to ask for further funding and seek new partners.

Now zoom out from your user and see the bigger picture: impact is like an onion, it has different layers. At the core you have the individual (users).

4. CONSIDER CO-CREATION WITH YOUR SUBJECTS

But your users can have an impact within their community and have a social impact, and social pressure

If your story involves specific communities then con-

can scale up and have an impact at a political level.

sider co-creating your narrative with them. Documentary

Impact is therefore multi-layered and non-linear

makers and artists have experimented during most of

(systemic). This brings us to our fifth mind shift:

the last century with participatory practices, but

think of impact as a non-linear process with several

moving to digital media gives you one extra arrow in

points of entry. Your job is to strategically define

your bow: social media is by definition communitarian

how far you want your project to be influential,

and the web is first of all a network. The mind shift

and to design action points both in your story and

that interactive narrative offers you here is: Why

your promotion campaign to set an impact movement

use your singular voice to represent others? If you

in motion. You also need to keep in mind that this

have already embraced a certain level of co-authorship

is not a set science, networked media are ruled by

with your users and your multi-disciplinary team, why not extend it to your subjects? 6  https://cocreationstudio.mit.edu/


relational and non-causal logics, so you can

In conclusion, embarking on the creation of inno-

only play it by ear, constantly adjusting while

vative interactive narratives goes far beyond learning

listening to the reactions that you are generating.

new technical skills. It is a political and ideological statement within the digital world, where you take a position by framing and forging what the digital dis-

6. MAKE SURE YOUR PROJECT IS COHERENT

course is, or will be. Interactive narratives are not just a way to have free distribution on the web and

Finally, as part of the iterative process of

make your stories global, they are a way of thinking

creation, go back to your project’s fundamentals:

about the world and the relationships we want to build

your chosen platform, audiences, impacts, partners

in it. They create more than tell. They are tools. They

and resources. If you want to augment your chances

are a statement of action. This is why asking yourself

to move from the demo stage, or prototype, to full

“why should this story be interactive?” from day one

production you need to make sure that these five

is essential. Interactivity is an authorial choice.

points are aligned, because this is what will

Once you find your own answer to this essential

constitute your proposal, or project treatment.

question, you then have to decide if you want to follow

We have noticed throughout the years of !F

your creative instinct or prefer the guidance of an

Lab that often participants had clear answers for

ideation methodology like the WHAT IF IT process. This

each of the five pillars of their projects, but they

is totally up to you. Whatever you decide, you will

were not necessarily relating them. For example,

probably notice that you cannot avoid addressing some

we had stories aimed at an audience of teenagers

of the mind shifts that are listed in this article.

using a platform they did not engage with. Ideas

These mind shifts are more or less ineluctable because

for technically complex transmedia projects that

they are part of the journey that leads us to evaluate,

needed big financial resources lead by people who

and sometimes discover, what we want out of the digital

had no contacts in the industry. Or even projects

sphere, and which role we want our stories to have in

on topics that had no proven appeal to the selected

forging it. Welcome to the digital mind shift.

target audiences, but that the author wanted to continue because of their own interest in it. We all fall in love with our stories, but that is just not enough if we want them to be heard. In an interconnected and non-linear space such as the digital

REFERENCES

BRUNER, Jerome (1986) Actual Minds, Possible Worlds. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.

one, coherence in our intent is still necessary to

ECO, Umberto (1962) Opera Aperta, Milano: Bompiani Editore.

move a project forward. This brings us to our last,

GAUDENZI, Sandra (2019) The !F Lab Field Guide to Interactive Storytelling Ideation. http://www.iflab.net/wp-content/ uploads/2019/01/The-F-Lab-Field-Guide.pdf

and probably most counter-intuitive mind shift of all: to be coherent is not to have predicted all the causes that will have an effect, but to have a systemic vision where different forces can expand towards your desired direction. Think of your digital narrative as a living form that acts on the world through several forces. Your job is to give it a direction, not to pretend to control it.

MC ADAMS, Dan P. (1993) The Stories we Live by. London: The Guilford Press. MURRAY, Janet (1997) Hamlet on the Holodeck. The Free Press. NORMAN, Donald (1998) User Centered System Design. New Jersey: CRC Press. Thalhofer, Florian, Judith Aston, and Stefano Odorico (2018) “A Few Questions for Florian Thalhofer.” Alphaville: Journal of Film and Screen Media, no. 15, Summer 2018, pp. 106– 112. www.alphavillejournal.com/Issue15/InterviewThalhofer.pdf ZIMMERMANN, Patricia (2018) “Thirty Speculations Toward a Polyphonic Model for New Media Documentary.” Alphaville: Journal of Film and Screen Media, no. 15, Summer 2018, pp. 9–15. www.alphavillejournal.com/Issue15/ArticleZimmerman.pdf

MOVING FROM LINEAR TO DIGITAL INTERACTIVE STORIES: A SHIFTING ...  ·  SANDRA GAUDENZI   ·  24-31

31


NuNam2 is a Belgium based creative studio. It’s founders, Laure Cops and Wouter Vanmol, come both from film and communication studies. After traveling around the world they decided to settle back home, and created a company in 2014 with the intent to

OVERVIEW

use filmmaking in a socially engaged manner. I met them in 2015, when they participated to IF Lab (Interactive Factual Lab), a EU funded workshop

FROM STORYTELLERS TO STORYFACILI­TATORS: INTERVIEW WITH LAURE COPS & WOUTER VANMOL FROM NUNAM   BY SANDRA GAUDENZI1

that I ran between 2015 and 2018, aimed at developing digital interactive narratives. The reason Laure and Wouter joined the workshop was because they had been working on a project that could not just be done as a documentary. It was a story too big to fit. They wanted people to feel engaged, they wanted impact, and they were wondering if the web, or any other interactive format, could help them do reach beyond the screen. It turns out that IF Lab did more than help them with their ideas, it actually changed their whole way of thinking about their role as storytellers, and as a result they changed their company’s profile, going from the production of linear stories, to a “creative studio that shapes stories into film, photography, words, installations and interactives for clients, audiences and ourselves”. Shifting from a linear mindset to a 360 degrees interactive one meant changing ways of working, learning new tools but most of all looking at the world differently: less as observers and more as facilitators of change. This interview aims at tracing the mindset changes that Laure & Wouter had to

1  Sandra Gaudenzi is the Head of Studies of !F Lab (Interactive Factual Lab). She has been consulting, mentoring, researching, lecturing, writing, speaking and blogging about interactive factual narratives for the last twenty years. She is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Westminster’s Digital and Interactive Storytelling LAB; visiting Fellow at the Digital Cultures Research Centre (UWE, UK); co-director of the i-Docs conference and website, and co-editor of the book: i-docs: the Evolving Practices of Interactive Documentary.

face during their transition from “story-tellers” to “story-facilitators”.

BACK IN 2015, YOU JOINED IF LAB TO DEVELOP A STORY IN AN INTERACTIVE WAY. WHAT WAS THE PROJECT AND WHY DID YOU FEEL IT NEEDED TO BE INTERACTIVE?

2  https://www.nunam.be/

BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 32


Wouter Vanmol (WV): Every story you tell is

again? We probably new intuitively that it had to

personal,

be something interactive but it was only at the

but

this

one

was

(and

still

is)

probably the most personal story we ever felt

first workshop - !F Lab Storybooster 2015 - that

the need to tell. Laure lost her father to

we managed to translate our initial thoughts to

suicide when she was 18 years old. It took her

concrete reasons.

more than 10 years to come to peace with what happened. In the meantime also her best friend Saura choose to take her own life.

LC: We discovered that support groups are very important

in

coping

with

the

trauma.

People

learn from each other and reassure each other

Laure Cops (LC): I have come through, I even

through sharing experiences and feelings. They

dare to say as a stronger, richer person. But

discover that what they are experiencing and

it cost me blood, sweat and tears. Now I know

feeling are normal responses any person would

that

new

have in similar circumstances. BUT this comes

identity, is crucial. I learned the hard way

with three problems: 1) Not everybody feels com-

that a successful processing stands or falls

fortable going to these kind of meetings. 2) Not

with the fact that you can reconcile with the

everybody has access to them due to geographical

new situation, death as a definitive part of

reasons - not in their neighborhood-, social

life. I had to learn to accept that constant

(stigma/blame)

happiness is an illusion. That I was injured

groups are at given times. These are not always

and that I would always wear the scars. But

the times when help is needed.

building

a

new

internal

world,

a

over the years I also realised that I could discover happiness again. Somewhere along the way I decided to use that whole horror as my strength. Because while every suicide is a tragedy for the people who have to deal with it, the personal outcomes can be very different. Some people bereaved by suicide spiral down, developing suicide thoughts themselves (20 to 30 percent of those who lost somebody to suicide) while others, who manage to go through the grieving process in a forward

or

economic

reasons.

3)

These

So from that iteration on we knew we wanted our project to be anonymous and ad-hoc. The Golden Forest had to be a guide to help people cope with their grief in a forward looking way. The project had to give the opportunity to the user to go through it at their own speed. The user had to be able to steer the story towards the feelings/situations that they were dealing with at that time. And to do this, only an interactive approach was right.

looking way, can find new outcomes and a deeper sense/understanding of life (and death). WV: From the beginning we knew The Golden Forest3 was a project about this aftermath of suicide.

WHAT WAS YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING BACK THEN? I REMEMBER YOU WANTED YOUR PROJECT TO BE ON THE WEB, WHY?

What does this complex grieving process look like? How do you go on with your life after you

WV: I think I was part of one of the last genera-

lost a loved-one ? How do you re-embrace life

tions that studied Journalism with an almost blind eye to digital and interactive storytelling. The teachers at our school were coming from ‘offline’

3  https://www.nunam.be/golden-forest

FROM STORY - TELLERS TO STORY - FACILITATORS: INTERVIEW WITH LAURE COPS...  ·  BY SANDRA GAUDENZI   ·  32-37

33


little

LC:“The interface is part of the experience” was a

knowledge and/or interest how journalism was

real “aha” moment. !F Lab set in motion a sort of

or should be adapting to the emergence of ‘the

“professional maturing”. It was the first place

internet’. But of course I knew something was

where we questioned the medium. Where we learned

cooking. When working as a video journalist

that ‘your canvas is not only a canvas”, where

for an online medium I was drawn to these new

a canvas is more than white space. We discov-

and exciting things that came out and were

ered that every medium has its challenges and

obviously exploring new paths.

possibilities. Possibilities to reach the user.

environments,

and

most

of

them

had

LC: Later on we started exploring ourselves. We experimented with software like Klynt and Racontr and did a longform with Pageflow4 on

Possibilities to reach your goal as a maker, but also possibilities in the pure storytelling field. Possibilities to reveal, interact, immerse...

Europe’s energy supply, mixing text, photo and

We like to believe that every story has a medium

video. By then we knew there were things like

that fits it like a glove. Whether it is text-

VR and AR, but we had no idea how to approach

based, audio or video-based. Whether it is linear

these media and how to produce content for it.

or non-linear. Whether it is AR, VR, XR, radio,

For The Golden Forest we wanted the project to

podcast, chatbots, and so on... Point is, there’s

be web-based because we taught that like this

a whole range of

we could reach the biggest possible audience.

purify every form is to find new ways to tell the

Not because out of vanity but because we knew

same old stories we all share since the begin-

that there are so many people that lost rela-

ning of time. It initiated a sort of research,

tives to suicide but never have the chance to

a research that is still going strong, where we

find help in their community.

question the (new) medium and its possibilities.

WV: I think this also resonated with our belief

WV: Before !F Lab our knowledge of media was

to use ‘technology for good’. In a world were

limited to “text, video or photo. It was ‘only’

new technology is one of the driving forces

TV or cinema. And we were into ‘the video com-

behind social, cultural, economical and polit-

partment’. What !F Lab did was not only make us

ical disruption, we think it is hopeful (and

realise this but also reveal a whole new and

much needed) to actively try to implement new

coming technology-based emerging world of media

technologies in a way it is a catalyst for

and possibilities.

positive change.

media. And to combine, twist,

As a matter of fact it was only by seeing all these crazy, impressive, intriguing projects on

I REMEMBER YOU TELLING ME THAT IF LAB HAD BEEN A “LIFE-CHANGING EXPERIENCE” FOR YOU… CAN YOU EXPLAIN?

the web, in VR, AR, XR, as transmedia installations etc, that we realised we were part of the ‘old possibilities’ and that it was the dawn of a whole new era of storytelling. And that is after all the most interesting thing to pursue, right : the feeling of exploring. Setting foot

4  Pageflow is a publishing platform for Multimedia Storytelling. Sample of a project done with Pageflow by NuNam: https://www.nunam.be/walking-the-line

on new lands. Going into the great unknown!


LC: Strangely, going on this quest brought us

audience to interact and possibly ‘co-create’

back home again. By exploring these new media,

the story. So as makers we consider ourselves

we discovered the power of story. And more so,

more and more facilitators. We have a vision

the art of it. The craftsmanship.

It made us

and we have to create an ecosystem where every

think on how we were using stories in our own

part involved can thrive and add to this bigger

audiovisual/ journalistic projects thus far.

picture we have in mind.

WV: !F Lab changed our perspectives. Not only

WV: And that’s how we also like to work today.

did we learn to pivot, but we also learned the

We are trying to embed ourselves in an ecosystem

basic fact that there are different perspec-

where we are surrounded by people we like to

tives. It’s like Leo in the Matrix, not only

work with and who are great at things we are

finding out there is a glimpse, but as a matter

not. Standing on the shoulders of giants, right?!

of fact also that there is another reality. I

Building the team had thus become an important

think !F Lab taught us this by stressing us to

part of every projects process.

research our impact strategy.

Our take-away:

Where story and medium collide: IMPACT.

WAS FOCUSING ON THE USER - RATHER THAN ON THE STORYTELLING ONLY - A RADICAL MIND SHIFT FOR YOU? HOW DID YOU ADJUST TO THAT AND HOW DO YOU PLAN YOUR INTERACTIVE STORIES TODAY?

WHAT WERE THE MAIN OBSTACLES THAT YOU FACED AFTER THE WORKSHOP TO DEVELOP YOUR PROJECT? WHERE THEY FINANCIAL, TECHNICAL OR CONCEPTUAL? LC :I think you can bring most of our struggles down

to

“mainly

financial”.

Of

course,

going

through the creative, or conceptional, process WV: It was a radical mind shift indeed, but

is always filled with challenges to overcome,

actually it was not that hard to do. Probably

but that is part of the fun! - and !F Lab really

the biggest change “traditional makers” have

delivered in providing us a guide to go through

to make, is to go beyond their ego, because a

this iterative process!

big part of “focussing on the user” is about that, we think. It is not only your story

The financial part of our endeavor however is

you’re outputting. It is finding common ground

the most challenging one. To put it bluntly:

between yourself and your audience. You go

making a video, short form documentary, long-

from being a storyteller to becoming a story

form,... doesn’t cost a whole lot. But to pull

architect. And that is a whole new role you

of the quality piece of interactive, immersive

have to adjust to. And we like that new role!

experience we have in mind, means bigger productions. And bigger teams. And thus bigger chal-

LC: We think this process of focussing on the

lenges to raise the budget you need. Certainly

user goes hand in hand with the knowledge

in a field where the whole (financial) industry

that

is still developing in a way.

to

pull

of

interactive

projects

you

are not the only one in control anymore. You want the creative technologists to be thinking about the story as well. You want the developers to add to the story. You want your

WHAT WOULD YOU ADVISE TO NEWCOMERS IN THE FIELD: SHOULD THEY START FROM THE

FROM STORY - TELLERS TO STORY - FACILITATORS: INTERVIEW WITH LAURE COPS...  ·  BY SANDRA GAUDENZI   ·  32-37

35


BIG IDEA, OR SHOULD THEY CHECK THEIR IMMEDIATE RESOURCES AND CONTACTS FIRST? WHAT IS THE RIGHT BALANCE BETWEEN CREATIVITY AND FEASIBILITY? WV: We love to work together with our friends, but we really miss having “tech friends” (or having

more

coding/developing

skills

few experimental prototypes, following a crazy into

the

great

unknown,

just

for

it feasible! That is how we do it for now, but who knows how we’ll do it tomorrow? As long as we are gentle dragons, we’ll make it, right?!

our-

selves). How lovely it would be to build a

idea

creativity into and you fight like dragons to make

the

thrill of it!

WHERE DO YOU START FROM WHEN A CLIENT COMES TO YOU? IDEAS? INTERACTIVE POTENTIAL? BUDGET? WV:

It

really

depends.

For

some

projects

you

Hiring a tech team leaves not much room for

immediately see interactive potential. Some might

experimentation and exploration for the fun

have the interactive potential, but if the client

of it. So find friends to play and experiment

already has certain expectations or a more tradi-

with! And certainly friends that have skills

tional mindset, it can be a tough job convincing

you don’t have. Friends who approach things

them to take the interactive route.

differently. It will give you the pleasure to co-create things that are more or less free, new, fresch, crazy, not needed and without a deadline. It will give you the pleasure to fail without consequences.

To be able to make really interesting interactive experiences is often a case of ‘the planets aligning’. There has to be a story, there has to be interactive potential, the client has to be willing to follow your creative path (and often take a step into the unknown) and there has to be

WHAT IS YOUR OWN WAY TO DEVELOP PROJECT NOWADAYS

a budget that allows for it all. Those things are not (yet) easily combined. In our case, anyway. Although we also have to say that there seems to

LC: We have 3 kinds of projects running simul-

be a certain ‘digital awakening” among some of our

taneously: first, the small projects, mostly

clients. Maybe also because we try to pursue good

client stuff, very feasible, but can also be

relationships with our (potential) clients and

some personal experiments for the fun of it

really “preach the interactive prophecy”.

all. Then we also have some medium length projects. Projects that leave room for creative

LC: This being said, you can always help those

expression but don’t push feasibility to its

planets to align. There are solutions (you could

limits.

Projects we work on for a few months,

also call them compromises) for certain obstacles

where there often is some sort of client’s

like budget issues. An example: for the interac-

expectations to meet. And then we have the

tive documentary ‘Nueva Prosperina’ we were facing

one big project. The project that makes our

exactly this budgetary limits. So instead of going

hearts beat with passion. The big project that

for “the whole custom made way” we used Wirewax - a

defines you. The project that is part of your

software to make interactive video5 - to create

oeuvre. This is the project you pour all your 5  Sample of a project made with Wiremax by NuNam: https://www. nunam.be/nueva-prosperina


a sort of minimal viable product. The client believes in the idea behind it, they liked the documentary and for their next campaign they are willing to provide extra funding to continue

YOUR FINAL WORDS… WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SAY TO PEOPLE THAT ARE NEW IN THE FIELD - THAT YOU WISHED YOU WERE TOLD BACK IN 2015?

the interactive path and take it to a higher level. So it really is a step by step process.

WV: Set goals. Be ambitious. But see things in perspective. Don’t get impatient. When we started the Golden Forest we expected to have it finished

HOW DIFFERENT IS IT AS A PROCESS WHEN YOU ARE WORKING ON YOUR OWN PROJECTS? LC:Since The Golden Forest has become such a big project we try not pursue too many other new projects. We have lots of ideas and keep iterating them on paper, but producing them is something we haven’t come to do. We do little experiments, sketch our ideas and try them out, but we wait for the right opportunity before showing them to others.

in 2 years time. But after 4 years we know it will take us at least one (or even 2) more year(s) to have the Golden Forest become a reality. At first we saw this as an eternity. But when you put it into perspective, we are not only trying to pull off a project with several international versions (so far we are talking about a Flemish and German version), we are also making our first medium length

documentary.

We’re

building,

expanding

and consolidating our own creative studio, enjoying each others company, the new professional

But thinking of this, it is indeed a little

relationships we forged and the beauty of life

different working on our own ideas. We leave

in general. So our big “peace out” could be as

budget things out of the creative process.

cheesy - but not less significant or hard to

That’s for sure! And even the focus on the user

achieve - than ‘live the moment.’

is less important than our focus on the story. The story is what gets us passionate. It is the story that makes us want to dig deeper.


I want to map new terrain rather than chart old landmarks MARSHALL MCLUHAN

INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES

BEYOND THE INTERFACE: FUNDAMENTAL CONCEPTS AND WORKS IN INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES

INTRODUCTION

The spectrum of work which we call interactive

digital narratives in this book represents very diverse productions with different formats, structural narratives, support platforms, modes of interaction, and production dimensions3. We are addressing large, multiplatform productions, such as Highrise (2009-2017)4; small productions, like

Ilha Grande: Cada Praia, uma Ilha; Cada Ilha, uma

ANDRÉ PAZ1 AND KATIA AUGUSTA MACIEL2

História (2015)5; collaborative, social impact works like The Quipu Project (2015)6; web documentary series, such as Do Not Track (2015)7; mobile, app-based narratives, whether fiction such as

Phallaina (2016)8; or documentary, like Alma: Une Enfant de la Violence (2012)9. More generally, these productions have been mapped out by certain projects, such as Docubase10, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Open Documentary Lab, a database about the field that is available online, and mentioned by international curators11. All of these productions have been recognized in recent 1  André Paz is a professor and researcher at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro State (UNIRIO). He teaches in the Professional Masters of Digital Creation and Production at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). Director and producer of interactive narratives. Founder and coordinator of Bug404. Curator of THE BUG EXHIBITION in 2018.

years by renowned festivals, such as IDFA DocLab, of the International Documentary Film Festival of Amsterdam (IDFA). 3  It worth mentioning that we do not address immersive narratives as an object in this article 4  http://highrise.nfb.ca/ See page 106. 5  www.ilhagrandewebdoc.website. See page 108. 6  http://interactive.quipu-project.com. See page 109.

2  Katia Augusta Maciel is a professor and researcher at the School of Communication (ECO) and coordinator of the Professional Masters of Digital Content Creation and Production at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ).

7  www.donottrack-doc.com.See page 111. 8  http://phallaina.nouvelles-ecritures.francetv.fr/phallaina_en.php. See page 121. 9  http://alma.arte.tv.

See page 121.

10  https://docubase.mit.edu/ 11  Bug404 has translated this material and also released it in Portuguese. http://bug404.net/

BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 38


In this book, the article “The Scenario of Interactive and Immersive Narratives”

concepts were selected to map out the field and

(Paz and

point out the potential of its works, with the

Jucá, 2019) shows how these productions arise

objective of thus functioning as a reference for

within the context of innovative ecosystems and

innovative productions or research projects. The

with producers, large media companies, festivals,

next item presents the field in a more general

funders, research centers, and congresses. It is

manner, with its diverse formats and more basic

placed at the intersection between the audiovi-

concepts. The following item presents the rela-

sual, design, and programming. The creative and

tional aesthetic perspective which allows for

production processes require interdisciplinary

the recognition of works as projects which go far

collaboration and an ample dialogue between those

beyond interface. The following items explore,

who produce and those who research. Thus, the

respectively, the potential which works acquire

consolidation of these innovative ecosystems

when incorporating different agency practices

occurred in parallel with the emergence of an

regarding participants and users.

12

international field of research, with laboratories

In the field of interactive digital narra-

and research groups, such as MIT Open Documentary

tives, there is no work format which has prevailed

Lab , in Boston; and specific congresses, such as

or become hegemonic. We can identify some more

i-Docs14, in Bristol, and Interdocs Barcelona15.

consolidated formats, but, in fact, what we have

This field of research has established a broad

observed is the disseminated rise of hybrid works.

dialogue through articles, books, congresses,

The defining characteristic of this innovative

and blogs, around authors who have become inter-

field is its creative fertility. We believe that

national references, such as Sandra Gaudenzi,

research can contribute to this fertility and to

Arnau Gifreu-Castells, William Uricchio, Mandy

the field’s development by feeding new projects.

Rose, and Judith Aston. The book, I-Docs: The

After all, they are not going to “invent the wheel,”

Evolving Practices of Interactive Documentary

but will innovate using references and the diverse

(2017), by Judith Aston, Sandra Gaudenzi, and

paths and possibilities they indicate. For this,

Mandy Rose, for example, has become a recent

we seek to bring concepts which allow us to map

reference in the field. In Brazil, André Paz,

out the terrain of this field, avoiding the overly

Julia Salles, Denis Renó, Katia Augusta Maciel,

rigid classification of these hybrid works which

and Vicente Gosciola have also conducted important

do not fit into overly specific categories.

13

studies in the field. This article is an introduction to interactive digital narratives through some

INTERACTIVE DIGITAL NARRATIVE

of the basic concepts formulated in the context of this new field of research, organized

In the broad universe of narrative possibilities

from the relational aesthetic perspective

arising from the diffusion of digital and internet

which has been developed by André Paz. The

media, what characterizes an interactive digital narrative? What are its specific characteristics? The

12  See page 11. 13  http://opendoclab.mit.edu/ 14  https://idocs2018.dcrc.org.uk/ 15  http://www.docsbarcelona.com/en/ed-2016/festival-2016/

primordial mark of these works is the presentation of an interactive interface, rather than the traditional screen generally used in film and television.

programacio/

BEYOND THE INTERFACE: FUNDAMENTAL CONCEPTS AND WORKS...  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ AND KATIA AUGUSTA MACIEL   ·  38-51

39


In these works, the spectator encounters an

and makes their choices within a limited number

interactive experience which transforms them

of possibilities that are previously produced and

into an interactor, like with other fields of

made available by the creators.

interactive art, as already described by Louis-

The informational structure of an interactive

Claude Paquin in 2006, in his book, Comprendre

digital narrative is, therefore, a system in which

les médias interactifs. Paquin affirms (2006:

various media (text, video, animation, graphics,

15): “With the interfaces, the direct manipu-

among others) are made available by the interface.

lation, the spectators become interactors,” for

The graphic design of the interface is a fundamental

it is necessary to physically interact with the

part of the work. The interface organizes access to

database for the narrative to occur.

the database. The interactor’s navigation through

The most appropriate example is that of

their choices results in a particular version of

the work which has become the field’s great-

the narrative. In this sense, the interactor’s

est reference: Highrise (2009-2017). Katerina

actions are full of meaning, as Arnau Gifreu-Castells

Cizek’s interactive documentary, produced by the

observes in The Interactive Multimedia Documentary:

National Film Board of Canada (NFB), explores

a proposed analysis model (2010). Thus, in her

questions about living in large buildings around

seminal book, Inventing the Medium: principles of

the world. As defined on its website: “An Emmy-

interaction design as a cultural practice (2012),

winning, multi-year, many-media, collaborative

Janet Murray affirms the necessity of considering

documentary experiment at the National Film

interactors as “cultural beings” who actively create

Board of Canada, that explores vertical liv-

and negotiate the meaning of shared information.

ing around the world.” In fact, Highrise has

Therefore, when we speak here of interactive digital

become a set of interactive narratives on the

narrative, we refer to works which incorporates this

same theme. The interactive documentary Out My

interactivity into the narrative through digital

Window (2010)16, for example, dwells on the life

means, within a more complex discursive context.

of people who inhabit skyscrapers in different

Three clarifications become important here.

parts of the world. Through the interface, the

Firstly, a documentary web series available through

interactor can choose and navigate through 49

Youtube or Vimeo episodes, for example, is not

stories from 13 cities around the planet, entering

part of this universe. This is due to the simple

pages that offer an interactive, 360 collage of

reason that interactivity is not part of the work’s

their homes, with different stories accessible

interface, it is not in the comments or external

through hyperlinks that are available in text

shares. Secondly, games are not part of the field

and audiovisual content. For example, if an

addressed in this book. They incorporate interac-

apartment in São Paulo is chosen, the interactor

tivity and participation into the narrative, but

will have access to stories from Ivaneti and

represent their own universe, much larger, with

her family, squatters in a building in the Luz

its own specificities, players, practices, and

neighborhood and coordinator of the São Paulo

proposals. Thirdly, only a small minority of the

Landless Workers’ Movement (MST). The narrative

works is fictional, such as Phallaina (2016), by

occurs when the interactor uses the interface,

Marietta Ren, a French scrolling graphic novel, specifically designed for the tactile interfaces of mobile devices. Available for Android and iOS,

16  www.outmywindow.nfb.ca. See page 106.


this work on an application tells the fictional

techniques, Hollow explores the population decline

story of Audrey, who lives in a city constructed

in rural areas of the United States through the

on stilts due to the continuous rise of waters

story of the residents of McDowell county, in West

and catastrophic waves, and who experiences

Virginia, which has a population of 20 thousand

a transformative personal journey, combining

inhabitants, down from 100 thousand in the 1950s.

cognitive sciences and mythology.

The project features the direct participation of the community itself, they suggested research themes and proposals, as well as providing part of the audiovisual material which comprises the work.

INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY

Through surprising interactive scrolling collages, The vast majority of interactive digital narrative

Hollow uses videos, infographics, photography, and

productions are non-fiction. Thus, these works

archival footage to explore the universe of the

are largely called interactive documentaries

local characters and history, articulated through

or i-docs - an abbreviation for interactive

social media and fundraising campaigns.

documentary. Many of the field’s main references

Do Not Track is a documentary series about

use this term, such as Arnau Gifreu-Castells.

privacy and the economy on the web. The project

I-docs is also the name of one of the field’s

represents a set of works which use algorithms in

main congresses, held by the University of West

its interactivity, like Digital Me (2015)21, by

England, in Bristol, England. In a broader sense,

Sandra Gaudenzi. In the episodes, the interactor

interactive documentaries work with the creative

is asked to provide some data about themselves, and

treatment of reality when they incorporate inter-

throughout the fruition of the work experiences a

activity into the narrative. These works can

process analogous to the methods and tools which

exist in one or more of the following formats:

trackers use commercially on the internet. Do Not

websites, mobile device applications, gallery

Track is therefore an interactive documentary series

or museum installations, and performances.

which not only narrates a story or a discourse,

The vast majority of i-docs are on websites,

but offers the interactor an experience similar

and are also therefore called web documentaries

to that which the theme explores. Network Effect

17

or web docs. Examples include Out My Window ,

(2015)22, by Jonathan Harris and Greg Hochmuth, is

A Short History of the Highrise (2013)18, and

similar in that it also explores the internet use’s

Universe Within (2015)19, all from the Highrise

psychological effect on humanity. The interactor

project. This is also true for internationally

has around seven minutes to watch a giant database,

recognized and awarded works such as Hollow

which induces a state of anxiety. A provocation

(2013) , by documentary maker Elaine McMillion

about the illusion of knowledge and completeness

Sheldon, and Do Not Track, by documentary maker

generated by the internet. These works, as well as

Brett Gaylor and produced by Upian, one of the

the aforementioned Digital Me and Universe Within,

most renowned producers in the field. With a

are part of a set of interactive documentaries which

graphic installation and the use of parallax

address questions regarding the very environment

20

of the internet. 17  outmywindow.nfb.ca 18  http://www.nytimes.com/projects/2013/high-rise/index.html 19  http://universewithin.nfb.ca/mobile/index.html

21  http://www.interactivefactual.net/digital-me/

20  http://hollowdocumentary.com/

22  www.networkeffect.io. See page 107.

BEYOND THE INTERFACE: FUNDAMENTAL CONCEPTS AND WORKS...  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ AND KATIA AUGUSTA MACIEL   ·  38-51

41


Although the majority of interactive documentaries are supported on websites, some use

interactive documentary which is also presented as a transmedia documentary.

mobile device applications as their main support. Perhaps the best known example is Alma: Une Enfant

de la Violence, produced by the ARTE group and

TRANSMEDIA DOCUMENTARY

Upian, two of the largest producers in the field.

Alma is a documentary about and named after a

The transmedia logic assumes a set of content which

26-year-old woman who was born in Guatemala and

crosses through multiple platforms with narrative

grew up in poverty, in the midst of urban gang

and aesthetic connections, offering complementary

wars known as maras. For five years, Alma was a

experiences within the same narrative experience.

member of one of the most violent groups in the

As Carlos Scolari notes in his book, Narrativas

country and lived surrounded by murder, aggression,

Transmedia: cuando todos los medios cuentan (2013),

and brutality. In this work, the interactor can

different meaning systems (verbal, iconic, audio-

choose between Alma narrating her stories, and

visual, textual) are aggregated in a complementary

images of certain scenes which illustrate the

manner and expanded. In Convergence Culture (2009),

narrations. Also based on an application, Rider

Henry Jenkins shows how each new work is founded

Spoke (2007), by the Blast Theory collective from

on an older one, while at the same time offering

England, explores a set of audio stories that

new “access points” to the created narrative uni-

are geo-located on the streets while interactors

verse. For the public, the contact with one part

circulate through the cities where the work was

potentially leads to the discovery of others. The

exhibited and experienced. Using geo-located

transmedia experience, in fact, occurs through the

media has become a fairly common procedure among

public’s active search for these “access points”

interactive documentaries on websites and applica-

to the system.24

tions. The Sound of Bells (2014)23, also uses this

In this way, an i-doc can be an “access point”

technique, providing geo-referenced, audiovisual

for a larger transmedia documentary, which crosses

content on the tradition of bell sounds from the

over different online or offline platforms: film,

historic churches of Minas Gerais, a state in

website, book, installation, or application. The

Brazil. In the work, the interactor can navigate

project The Sound of Bells, for example, includes

through this content remotely, anywhere on the

a web doc, a feature-length documentary, a mobile

planet, using the map to identify the location of

device application, a sonic map, and traveling

the churches, but they can also do so while walking

projections. Singular aesthetic elements cross

through the region and through the streets of the

through different platforms, such as graphic design

very cities, encountering and navigating content

and audiovisual montage. The traveling projec-

in the churches which are physically nearby. The

tions brought audiovisual content to the external

application is actually part of a larger project,

walls of the churches located in the interior of

including a web documentary, which explores the

Minas Gerais. Specifically for The Bug Exhibition,

universe of the bell towers and unfolds into even

Marina Thomé and Marcia Mansur produced a video

more platforms. Thus, The Sound of Bells is an 24  This transmedia logic was widely debated and applied to the analysis of interactive digital narratives, such as web documentaries, in the book Direção de arte e transmidialidade (2018), orga23  www.somdossinos.com.br. See page 135.

nized by Amaury Fernandes and Katia Augusta Maciel.


installation for the Oi Futuro cultural center

and transmedia documentary, which denounces the

in Rio de Janeiro. The Sound of Bells provides

officially unrecognized policy of nonconsensual,

a narrative universe of bell sounds in historic

mass sterilization of more than 300 thousand women

churches through multiple platforms for a variety

and 20 thousand men from the poorer classes of

of audiences and physical spaces. Due to the

Peru in the 1990s, during the Alberto Fujimori

intrinsically fluid and subjective nature of

administration. The project’s major innovation

the encounter between the audience and each one

comes from the manner in which they managed to

of the works, the level of immersion as well as

present the testimonies of the victims, who were

its engagement is always varied and distinct.

largely women and indigenous, and trigger integrated

The public’s experience depends on how each one

action in search of justice. The project offers

traverses through the different access points and

a phone line the victims can call free of charge

through the narrative universe of the transmedia

to provide anonymous testimony. This resource was

documentary as a whole.

fundamental, as the majority of the women spoke the Quechua language and, within the oral, indigenous traditions, experienced difficulty in expressing

A PERSPECTIVE BEYOND THE INTERFACE

themselves through text or video, even more so given the delicate theme. From there, the project

Once we understand the concepts “interactive narra-

was based on the integration of the technologies -

tive,” “interactive documentary,” and “transmedia

telephone line and digital interface. The interface

documentary,” we can then better locate ourselves

was conceived in line with the project’s proposals

within this field. The question thus arises: What

and the creative solution for engaging the victims

significance do these works bring to the set of

in producing the record through audio content. It

narrative possibilities in a wider, more human

provides audio records on the web page in a way

context? To recognize this potential, we will

in which different interactors can also contrib-

adopt the relational aesthetic perspective as

ute with new audio records. Thus, the interactive

it has been developed by André Paz over recent

documentary corresponds to a collaborative work,

years (Paz and Salles, 2013 and 2015; Paz, 2017),

formed with contributions from different groups.

through the creative redescription of Nicolas

Through the interface of its online platform,

Bourriad (2009) and Vilém Flusser’s proposals,

the interactor can hear the stories of victims,

articulated with contributions from the field of

witnesses, and specialists. They can send their

research of the linear documentary tradition. For

own stories or messages and support to the victims.

this perspective, the works assume a procedural

They can donate to the project or collaborate in

connotation according to relational notions.

its development, pressuring the Peruvian justice

Beyond the interface, they are seen as “devices,”

system to punish those responsible. Therefore, the

recognized as broader processes of interactive

interactor has a series of practical possibilities

practices and agency among the team, the par-

for engaging with the narrative and the proposal

ticipants, and the interactors, throughout the

it represents. More than an unfinished work, the

creative and production processes. For example:

interactive documentary The Quipu Project is a

From Maria Court and Rosemarie Lerner, The

process of collaborative practices of agency for

Quipu Project is an interactive, collaborative,

victims and interactors on a hybrid platform of

BEYOND THE INTERFACE: FUNDAMENTAL CONCEPTS AND WORKS...  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ AND KATIA AUGUSTA MACIEL   ·  38-51

43


polyphonic content, in diverse media, and chan-

narrative, pre-determined by the production team,

neled for a purpose. In this way, the project

but rather a narrative of possible experiences.

not only narrates the stories of the victims,

Narration and interaction mix together in an open

it enmeshes the people in its attempt to result

and undefined process. In this sense, designing an

in concrete social impact. It is not only a

interactive document is a bet on the very dynamics

narrative which tells a story, but an engagement

which it can trigger. This is why Gaudenzi (2013a

for the construction of a new story.

and 2013b) considers interactive documentaries as

The presentation of The Quipu Project

an open, relational entity with its own dynamics,

clearly illustrates the concept of “device.” When

and proposes using the term living documentary.

we see interactive documentaries as a “device,”

“They put the emphasis on becoming, rather than

we see beyond the interface. Here, a “device”

explaining (...) The message is not in the form,

does not refer to the common sense meaning of

it is in the interaction,” (Gaudenzi, 2013b: 26).

an electronic apparatus, like a cell phone or a

In this sense, as Paz (2017) notes, the poetics of

tablet. It refers to an intersection of practices

the interactive documentary reside, in large part,

and technical, discursive, organizational, and

in the fertility of the “device,” or rather, in its

aesthetic elements, which promote effects and

potential to trigger proper, autonomous dynamics

affects in some sense25. From this perspective, the

with unpredictable effects and affects.

interface is a core of intersections of practices

In the case of Quipu, the project’s impact

and forms of interaction, agency, and relations.

also comes from the potential of the device and

More than a work as a product, it is a process for

from the communication and transmedia action strat-

which there is no preconceived model. As already

egies. The project counted on broad social media

noted, there is no consolidated productive format

promotion, an extensive and delicate awareness

or process for interactive narratives. Designing

campaign, the articulation of a national network,

an innovative interactive documentary is, before

and the survey of witnesses through the work of

content production, developing a “device,” or

activists in numerous locations. Thus, as Zambrano

rather, a specific intersection of practices

and Gifreu-Castells put it, in Aproximación al

and processes that pass through the interface.

potencial colaborativo de la narrativa documental

In The Quipu Project’s case, the interface was

interactiva en los procesos de cambio social (2016),

designed in line with its activist viewpoint,

the project functioned as a sounding board for the

moved by the fight for justice and the need for

demands of the local communities and the victims.

engaging different people in this sense.

The initial reports triggered a full social pro-

The interface promotes a kind of play-

cess which resulted in investigations and actions

ful agency in people by opening a series of

within the Peruvian justice system. These impacts

possibilities for interaction and engagement

are in line with the relational aesthetic per-

which dissolve the borders between production,

spective. Interactive documentaries are creative

distribution, and reception. It is not a closed

experiments, “devices” for interaction which lead to the possibility of new relations in the world.

25  We understand the concept of a device in a broad sense, from the appropriation and redescription of Foucault’s original concept, which represents a specific set of force fields and heterogeneous, technical, architectural, discursive, affective, and philosophical elements.

“It is no longer, however, about utopian projects and the full reconstruction of society’s forms of relation, but rather offering small possibilities


for concrete and circumscribed modifications.

recording and documentations: “Collectively, the

The possibility for a relational art consists

projects — and the ones to come — have both shaped

in taking as a theoretical horizon the sphere

and realized the Highrise vision: to see how the

of human relations and their social context, and

documentary process can drive and participate in

not the affirmation of an autonomous, symbolic

social innovation rather than just to document

space” (Paz, 2017: p. 90).

it; and to help re-invent what it means to be an

In this context, authorship unfolds in

urban species in the 21st century.” On the one

different dimensions. The creative process begins

hand, Highrise is dedicated to exploring forms and

at the conception of the “device” within the

procedures which unquestionably contribute to the

project as a whole, as in the case of The Quipu

development of languages and the field of interac-

Project. We are speaking here of the authorship

tive digital narrative. On another note, Highrise

of forms of interaction in a broader sense.

calls into question life in skyscrapers through

Here, authorship refers to the coherence between

creative agency towards concrete change. From the

the project’s purpose and its theme, platform,

relational perspective, it enmeshes participants

forms of interaction, practices, engagement

and interactors in an innovative form which aims

and, ultimately, the interface. This dimension

at small modifications - social innovations.

of the project will largely influence or deter-

Highrise illustrates the double nature of

mine the narrative and the content’s production

the purpose of interactive documentaries. On

and reception. Another dimension of authorship

one hand, innovative projects are proposed to

regards the production of the content itself.

explore new frontiers of language, seeking formal

On the other hand, one can continue through

contributions to the field, which are extremely

the possibilities of sending content through

important. Numerous projects have dedicated them-

the platform. The challenge is to not just the

selves and produced their proposals in this sense

creative process of a “device,” but rather a

by elaborating on different themes, such as the

“creative device,” which leads to new relations.

aforementioned Hollow, Do Not Track, Alma, The

The next item indicates examples in the sense of

Quipu Project, and Network Effect. On the other

projects that coherently structure proposals,

hand, as Paz (2017) defends, a species of natu-

production conditions, and agency practices.

ral propulsion in the interactive documentaries appears to also bring purpose to the projects, which is external to the aesthetic or language

THE COHERENCE OF THE PROJECTS

explorations. In What is Interactivity For? The

social dimension of web-documentary participaViewing interactive documentaries beyond their

tion, Kate Nash (2014) argues that the continuity

interfaces, what practices have been used and

between the documentary tradition and the new

how do these relate with the project’s pur-

production of interactive documentaries happens

pose and modes of production as a coherent

precisely through the exercise of certain social

whole? We return to the example of Highrise.

functions - more than through the conventions of

On its website, the project clearly presents

the genre of production practices. Among them, Nash

that its purpose is to trigger and participate

notes: i. Registering, revealing, or preserving:

in processes of social innovation, as well as

interactive documentaries can be databases or

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45


collections that can be accessed and orga-

de Iracema e Dirceu (2015)27, is an interactive

nized in various forms, which strengthens the

documentary which features the routine of a family

convergence between documentary and document,

from southern Brazil in extreme poverty, and uses

as in the already commented case of The Sound

very modest financial resources, produced by Diário

of Bells; ii. Civic engagement: interactive

Catarinense.

documentaries can promote the construction of

With more restricted budgets, especially in

communities with common interests and incenti-

Latin America, universities also have their own

vate debate and action, as in Highrise; iii.

production, with specific purposes and modes of

Persuasion: interactive documentaries can

production. One example is Women for Sale (2015)28,

exercise the role of convincing in discourse

produced by the National University of Rosario,

and public opinion on certain issues, as in

which registers and denounces the crime of human

The Quipu Project.

trafficking in Argentina. The work uses the victim’s

Thus, to a great extent, interactive and

accounts, specialist testimony, and data gathered

transmedia documentary projects assume different

through journalistic investigation. O que a Baía

purposes and social functions, in accordance with

Tem (2018)29, produced by the Federal University of

the resources they manage to mobilize and their

Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), is presented as a practical

modes of production. As there is no pre-estab-

research application by Katia Augusta Maciel, used

lished format in the field, there is no one mode

to express and experience the ecological diversity

of production which standardizes the execution of

of the Guanabara Bay through interactive audiovisual

the works. There are possibilities for projects

creation in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The

of different scales, complexities, and produc-

i-doc includes flat screen and 360 footage, seek-

tive structures. In this way, Highrise proposes

ing different levels and modes of engagement. The

the challenge of social innovation through a

idea, as Katia Augusta Maciel states in the arti-

multiplatform, large-scale project which is

cle, “Documentário interativo: a Baía de Guanabara

daring in aesthetic terms, as the National Film

prêt-à-porter” (2018), is that the work be used by

Board is an institution with ample resources and

professors to give agency to and also strengthen

a long tradition of supporting documentaries

teaching and learning beyond the school walls.

which are innovative in terms of proposal and

Also produced in the same university, by André

language. Produced by a small production com-

Paz, Ilha Grande: cada praia uma ilha, cada ilha,

pany, the aforementioned The Sound of Bells also

uma história is an interactive documentary which

uses diverse platforms with social innovation

presents stories experienced by characters from

to record and promote intangible heritage, but

the various fishing communities at beaches around

with far less financial and human resources.

Ilha Grande, in the state of Rio de Janeiro. The

The Shirt on Your Back (2014) , produced by The

interactive narrative is based on a series of videos

Guardian, represents a full set of works from

which was also sequentially published on social

the journalistic perspective, produced by large

media. The interface is very simple. As André Paz

businesses from the sector. As Quatro Estações

(2017) describes it, the interactive documentary

26

27  www.clicrbs.com.br/sites/swf/DC_quatro_estacoes_iracema_dirceu. 26  www.theguardian.com/world/ng-interactive/2014/apr/bangla-

28  www.documedia.com.ar/mujeres. See page 110.

desh-shirt-on-your-back. See page 112.

29  www.baia.net.br


was designed through dialogues with the local

collaboration among participants and researchers,

communities during a series of actions carried

technology specialists, and other professionals in

out in a larger project called Voz Nativa, which

developing the project and in the production pro-

sought to support community-based tourism in

cess. In the book, I-Docs: The Evolving Practices

Ilha Grande as well as the leading role of local

of Interactive Documentary (2017), Mandy Rose

youth in this process.

coordinates the full edition of a session dedicated

The simplicity of Ilha Grande’s interface

to the theme of co-creation.

contrasts with the complexity of One Millionth

There are diverse forms of incorporating the

Tower (2015)30, from Highrise. However, the

voice of the participants who are the project’s

principles behind the creative process and the

subject. In Ilha Grande and One Millionth Tower,

relationship with the subjects and participants

the design of the devices and the interface is a

of the projects are largely similar. The concep-

result of this dialogue. Other projects incorporate

tion of One Millionth Tower was developed with

the participants as content and media producers,

residents of a Toronto suburb over two years.

which is then called participative media. When the

The team worked in workshops with urban plan-

participative content has a determining share in

ners, architects, designers, programmers, and

the constitution of the narrative’s content, the

residents, who were invited to imagine how they

interactive documentaries are called collaborative.

would like the surrounding and common areas of

This is the case of the internationally-renowned 18

the buildings to be. This process resulted in the

Days in Egypt (2011)31, by Jigar Mehta and Yasmin

interface for One Millionth Tower, the first 3D,

Elayat. The work’s content is the set of media sent

open source documentary, in which the interactor

by people who lived through the 18 days of politi-

can navigate through these imagined projects.

cal and social disturbance in Egypt. As Paz (2017)

Before the platform and interface, however,

puts it, these projects require the mobilization

the “device” integrated a set of actions for

of participants as a fundamental component. To make

restoring the heritage, renovating deteriorating

the content creation viable, the productive process

areas, and even providing digital and literacy

needs to create a community of participants or give

courses for the youth. In both Ilha Grande and

agency to participants of a pre-existing community.

One Millionth Tower, the design of the platform

Other projects seek to use the interface to give

as content production followed the principles

agency to the interactors as content producers or

of co-creation. Director Katerina Cizek has

through other forms of participation. Zambrano and

perhaps become the most recognized name in the

Gifreu-Castells (2016), for example, focus their

field which defends co-creative processes, as

analysis on the participative and collaborative

she is one of the people responsible for the Co

practices in interactive documentaries. They note

Creation Studio at the MIT Open Doc Lab. The

some of the known cases of interactive and collabo-

co-creation projects incorporate representa-

rative documentaries in this sense, such as Mapping

tives from groups, who are the subject of the

Main Street (2010)32 and Question Bridge: Black Males

project as active participants in the creative

(2011)33. The already mentioned case of The Quipu

process. Thus, they count on open dialogue and 31  http://www.18daysinegypt.com/ 32  www.mappingmainstreet.org 30  http://highrise.nfb.ca/onemillionthtower/

33  http://questionbridge.com/

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47


Project seeks engagement from participants as much as it does from the interactors. The next item elaborates on the potential of the interface in accordance with the modes of interactivity.

Fig. 134 and Fig. 235

THROUGH THE INTERFACE

In his aforementioned text, Aren GifreuCastells (2010) presents all the narrative structure

Interactive documentaries engage in different

formats observed by Ryan and, moreover, deepens the

agency practices through the interface, which

relation between them and the modes of navigation.

allows the interactor to access and navigate

The depth of these issues goes beyond the scope

through its narrative structure - the form in

of this article, but the theme is fundamental for

which it organizes the set of media within the

developing new projects. The works offer modes of

system. This structure is composed of a finite

navigation and interactivity based on distinct

combination of narrative segments and assumes

structural narratives. To illustrate the modes of

a rhizomatic aspect with different formats. In

interactivity, however, we see some examples from

works published in 2001, 2011, and 2015, Marie-

the perspective organized by Sandra Gaudenzi in

Laure Ryan, for example, describes possible

The Living Documentary: from representing reality

architectures for interactive narratives, which

to co-creating reality in digital interactive

result in the potential narrative of the work.

documentary (2013). The author presents four modes

A basic example is the network structure (see

of interactivity: hypertextual, conversational,

Figure 1), in which interactors can jump between

participative, and experiential. These modes are

narrative units (also called knots). In this

not exclusive, that is, the same i-doc can use more

type of structure, there is no all-encompassing

than one, even if one is predominant to the point

narrative meaning as Tatiana Levin explains in her

of determining the work’s interactivity.

doctoral thesis, Narrativa e Interatividade no

The hypertext mode of interaction is the most

Webdocumentário (2016). Another example specified

common. In it, the interactor simply navigates

by Levin (2016) is that of the “sea anemone,”

through different content, which was previously

a structure in which each narrative unit is

arranged by the author and made available through

connected to a central core (Figure 2). From each

the interface. The interactor moves between hyper-

core, smaller narrative segments or micro-stories

links, without interfering in the work’s content.

are organized. There, from the initial central

The hypertext mode is present to a greater or lesser

core, the interactor can follow along a trail

extent in all i-docs, making the interactor an

and discover various, related micro-stories, or

explorer. They follow the logic of “click and go”

return and follow another trail.

or “click and see.” In this way, hypertext i-docs can, for example, allow for various paths and a

34  Network structure. Source: Peeling the Onion: Layers of Interactivity in Digital Narrative Texts (2011). Marie-Laure Ryan. Available on: http://www.marilaur.info/onion.htm 35  Caption: The structure of the sea anemone. Source: Peeling the Onion: Layers of Interactivity in Digital Narrative Texts (2011). Marie-Laure Ryan. Available on: http://www.marilaur.info/onion.htm


range of perspectives on one theme or subject.

web, but it also uses the conversational mode in

This is the case of the aforementioned Hollow,

various key moments; for example, when it solicits

where the residents of McDowell, in the United

personal data from the interactor in order to

States, seek to demystify the stereotypical view

respond with a portrait of their profile. This

of the county. McDowell suffers from a lack of

is a mark of the project: it offers an experience

employment, drug trafficking, and violence,

to the interactor of how, in an analogous form,

but it does not give in, it resists. Through

their data is used by websites, social media,

the accounts of various families, different

and streaming platforms. Therefore, it uses the

perspectives are presented. In the hypertext

conversational mode to make the interactor aware

form, the interactor scrolls the mouse up and

of how the web is a space where movements, speech,

down, from side to side, unveiling options for

and identity are recorded, tracked, and used.

links to various videos and photos showing the

From cell phones to social networks, everything

different realities of the location.

is watched in the search for strategic advertis-

In the conversational mode of interactiv-

ing information.

ity, there is a kind of dialogue between the

In the participative mode, the interactor is

interactor and the i-doc. The system responds

inserted into the work’s creative process, invited

specifically to the gestures of the inter-

to send photos, testimony, videos, or edit, remix,

actor, and there is a constant exchange in

translate, or subtitle. As in the already mentioned

the work. The interactor does not just pass

Quipu project, the interactor can send their stories

through previously determined and fixed con-

or messages to the victims to become part of the

tent, as in the hypertext mode. Their actions

work. They can also become a volunteer and help

also influence the content and the story as it

transcribe and subtitle testimonies which have

unfolds. Digital technologies are used here in

been sent to the project. Moreover, as mentioned

order to give the interactor the impression

before, the interactor can also make donations,

of navigating through a simulated world, like

sign a public petition, or engage in various actions

in a game. Universe Within (2015), from the

to promote the project. In the end, as the work’s

Highrise project, embodies this conversation

website states: “The purpose of our project is to

as much in the metaphoric sense used here as

help these stories reach as many people as possible,

in the literal sense. Three characters are

and for that we rely on people like you! Tweets,

presented and offer to guide the narrative

Facebook posts, blog articles or even just telling

experience. The avatars represent algorithms

a friend will go a long way towards helping us reach

with which one can speak about provocative

our goal.” Thus, what defines this mode of inter-

questions about digital life. The work thus

activity is the interactor’s participation in the

explores the relation of people who inhabit

content, through the dissemination of bandwidth,

skyscrapers throughout the world with the

as in the aforementioned 18 Days in Egypt, Mapping

internet, while provoking the interactor to

Main Street, and Question Bridge: Black Males36.

reflect on how they themselves relate with the

What stands out in these works is not the interac-

web. The aforementioned Do Not Track, gener-

tor’s choice of the order of visualizing previously

ally uses hypertext to make content available on how the surveillance economy works on the 36 http://questionbridge.com/

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49


available content (hypertext mode), nor the

forgotten places of rural Iceland. To interact

interactor-system conversation (conversational

with the work, the participant has to follow a map

mode), but the interactor’s participation in

from one place to the next, passing through gravel

the creation, production, and promotion of the

roads, enormous fields, and rocky coasts. The other

work’s content.

alternative is to learn about the project through

In the experiential mode of interactivity,

the web documentary, which tries to recreate the

the works explore a hybrid space between the

experience of the artistic installation for those

digital environment and the concrete world. They

who cannot physically be in Iceland.

seek to expand the experience of a place or an

I-docs use one or more modes of interactiv-

artistic installation, for example, relating the

ity in different forms. As was already said at the

interactive digital narrative to the movements

beginning of this article, there is no hegemonic

of the body in the space, and visual, auditory,

format, but rather a set of hybrid works which share

and tactile perceptions. As Gaudenzi and Aston

a series of common characteristics in a creative

(2012) explain, i-docs can add layers of per-

and innovative manner. In this environment, every

ception to reality, generating an experience

project needs to find the most efficient manner of

for the interactors which is both physical and

exploring the attributions and specificities of the

virtual at the same time. It is common in works

digital medium, as well as the diverse languages,

which include locative media, through the use

media, and technologies which intersect it. Our

of GPS (Global Positioning System), and mobile

intention was not, therefore, to point out paths

devices. This is the case, for example, of the

to be followed, but rather references which can

already mentioned application, The Sound of

inspire new interactive digital narrative projects

Bells, where the interactor can physically access

or research in this field. This is why we took on a

diverse, geo-referenced content about the sounds

perspective which recognizes the works as broader

of bells in the churches they visit in the small

processes of interactive practices and of agency

towns in the interior of Minas Gerais. Also

between the team, participants, and interactors

based on an application, Rider Spoke (2007) ,

throughout the creative and production processes.

by the British collective Blast Theory, allows

We also highlight the need for coherence among these

the interactor to travel by bicycle through

practices, the format, the productive structure,

points of the city where they explore a set of

and the purpose of the project. We therefore hope

accounts in geo-referenced audios, left by other

to contribute, in some form, to the creative fer-

interactors who have passed through the same

tility of this innovative and stimulating field.

37

place. A Cartography of Iconic Memory (2014)38, by Morgan Rhys Tams, uses QR codes permanently installed in the small fishermen’s village of Skagströnd, Iceland. Using a smartphone to read the codes, the interactor can see small animations specifically created for each location, seeking to bring new life to the practically

37  https://www.blasttheory.co.uk/projects/rider-spoke/ 38  http://www.morgantams.com/cartography/

REFERENCES

ASTON, J. (2017). Sandra Gaudenzi and Mandy Rose. I-Docs: The Envolving Practices of Interactive Documentary. London and New York: Columbia University Press. BOURRIAUD, N. (2009). Estética Relacional. São Paulo: Martins Fontes. GAUDENZI, Sandra. (2013a). The Living Documentary: from representing reality to co-creating reality in digital interactive documentary. Thesis. London: University of London.


GAUDENZI, Sandra. (2013b). The Interactive Documentary as a Living Documentary. Revista Doc On Line 14, pp. 9-31. Accessed August 30, 2017. http://www.doc.ubi.pt/ GIFREU-CASTELLS, Arnau (2010). The Interactive Multimedia Documentary: a proposed analysis model. Thesis. Pompeu Fabra University. JENKINS, H. (2006). Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide. New York: NYU Press. LEVIN, T. (2016). Narrativa e Interatividade no Webdocumentário [Thesis]. Universidade Federal da Bahia. MACIEL, K.A. and Fernandes, A. (2018). Direção de arte e transmidialidade. Rio de Janeiro: Editora UFRJ. MACIEL, K.A. (2018). Documentário interativo: a Baía de Guanabara Prêt-à-Porter. Revista de Geografia. v.35, n.1.: https://periodicos.ufpe.br/revistas/revistageografia/index MURRAY, J. (2012). Inventing the medium: principles of interaction design as a cultural practice. London: The MIT Press. NASH, K. (2014). What is interactivity for? The social dimension of web-documentary participation. Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies, pp. 37-41. PAQUIN, Louis-Claude. (2006) Comprendre les médias interactifs, Québec: Isabelle Quentin Éditeur. PAZ, André and Julia Salles. (2013) Dispositivo, Acaso e Criatividade: Por uma estética relacional do webdocumentário. Revista Doc On Line 14, pp. 33-69. http://www.doc.ubi.pt/.

PAZ, André and Julia Salles. (2015). Brasil, Mostra a sua Cara: aproximações ao cenário brasileiro de documentários interativos. Revista Doc On Line 18 pp. 130-165. http://www.doc.ubi.pt/. PAZ, André. (2017). Documentário interativo e estratégia de impacto social. Revista Doc On Line. Num. Esp.: 81-108. http://www.doc.ubi.pt/. RYAN, M.L. (2001). Narrative as Virtual Reality: Immersion and Interactivity in Literature and Electronic Media. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, series Parallax. RYAN, M.L. (2011) “Peeling the Onion: Layers of User Participation in Digital Narrative Texts.” New Narratives: Stories and Storytelling in the Digital Age. Eds. Ruth Page and Bronwen Thomas. Lincoln: University of Nebraska, pp. 35-62. RYAN, M.L. (2015) Narrative as Virtual Reality 2: Revisiting Immersion and Interactivity in Literature and Electronic Media. (2015) Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, series Parallax. SCOLARI, C. (2013) Narrativas transmedia: cuando todos los medios cuentan. Barcelona: Grupo Planeta. ZAMBRANO, V. & Gifreu-Castell, A. (2016) Aproximación al potencial colaborativo de la narrativa documental interactiva en los procesos de cambio social. (2016) Cultura, Lenguaje y Representación. XV 53-169.


1. INTRODUCTION

The interactive and transmedia documentary consists of forms of narrative expression which come about as

INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES

a result of the new avenues which the documentary genre allows through technological advancements. The objective and proposal of this work is to

CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN INTERACTIVE AND TRANSMEDIA DOCUMENTARY: THE AMERICAS, EUROPE, AND AUSTRALIA

offer a general approach to and a (non-exhaustive) analysis on the state of its development in those countries which currently feature notable work and production in this field (2018). We will focus on three continents which currently concentrate a large part of the development and production of this specific material: The Americas, Europe, and Australia. In 2013, we presented a doctoral thesis which revolved around the study and analysis of the interactive documentary. Making use of the research conducted between 2007-2013, we also published an article in

ARNAU GIFREUCASTELLS1

the scientific magazine, Obra Digital, entitled “El documental interactivo: estado de desarrollo actual” [The Interactive Documentary: The State of Current Development] (Gifreu-Castells, 2013). In this first approach, we divided the state of development into four parts: ‘Events and conferences’ (1); ‘Businesses, specialized producers, practitioners and actors’ (2); ‘Researchers’ (3); and ‘Specific software’ (4). From the moment we presented the first study and its related reports (doctoral thesis and articles) six years ago, the field of interactive and transmedia

1  Arnau Gifreu-Castells is a lecturer, researcher and director in the audiovisual and multimedia field. He was a research affiliate at the Comparative Media Studies / Open Documentary Lab (MIT, 2013-2018) and part of the i-Docs group (University of the West of England). He is also a lecturer at the ERAM-University of Girona and coordinates the interactive and transmedia activities at DocsBarcelona International Documentary Film Festival. He has published various books and articles on interactive and transmedia non-fiction, and specifically on interactive documentaries.

documentaries has not stopped evolving and consolidating itself, and has reached the current stage of normalization within the documentary genre. Events and festivals such as IDFA Doclab (the Netherlands),

Hot Docs Film Festival (Canada), Sheffield Doc/Fest (England), interDocsBarcelona (Barcelona), among others, promote and exhibit this kind of work year after year, along with conferences specialized in the interactive documentary, such as i-Docs (England),

BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 52


or in nonfiction, such as Visible Evidence. There

in Spanish-speaking countries, especially in Iberian

are more and more businesses and producers decid-

American countries such as Argentina, Colombia, Chile,

ing to dive into this kind of production, although

and Mexico. Before beginning the analysis on the main

the majority of the production continues to be

countries involved in the development, production and

carried by broadcasters such as ARTE (France),

research of these new narratives of nonfiction, it is

the National Film Board of Canada, and the Special

necessary to observe that this work does not intend to

Broadcasting Service (Australia). The informative

make an exhaustive analysis of everything that happens

and journalistic media have also marked a presence,

in this area, but a first investigation on what we

led by The New York Times and The Guardian. The

believe are its most relevant works in 2018. In this

more prolific producers continue to be concentrated

way, for this edition of the BUG book we formulated

in France and Canada, where there are more means

an evolution of the work presented in 2013.

and resources for production, such as the cases of Upian and Honkytonk Films (France), Submarine

Channel (the Netherlands), or Helios Design Labs,

2. STATE OF DEVELOPMENT IN THE AMERICAS2

Felix & Paul Studios, and Akufen (Canada), to name a few examples. The number of researchers who cover

2.1 CANADA

interactive and transmedia documentaries in their work has also increased greatly, featuring many

Our first stop will be in the Americas, in particu-

female researchers such as Sandra Gaudenzi, Kate

lar, North America. In Canada, millions of dollars

Nash, Mandy Rose, Judith Aston, and Julia Scott-

go into interactive and transmedia fiction and

Stevenson. The specific software which appears to be

nonfiction productions every year. The government

consolidated in this type of production is native web

offers public support through the Canadian Media

development through the HTML 5 language (with CSS,

Fund and other open calls for public grants; there

Javascript, and databases mainly as a complement),

are various institutions dedicated to the inter-

dynamic content managers such as Wordpress and

section of digital and documentary media. However,

Joomla, and especially certain multimedia editors

if there is an institution that stands out, it

such as Klynt and Korsakow.

is the country’s main broadcaster, the National

In this way, the tendencies announced in our article about the state of development in 2013 seem

Film Board of Canada (NFB), created in 1939 by the Canadian government.

to trend toward permanence, consolidation, and even

Canada’s tradition and taste for nonfiction

expansion in this field. As we have pointed out in

cinema, and especially for the narrative documentary

earlier works (Gifreu-Castells, 2017), it appears

is not something recent; in the mid-twentieth century,

that the form of the interactive and transmedia

it established itself as the cradle of Direct Cinema, a

documentary in English and French-speaking countries

documentary style whose main objective was to directly

is changing and leading to an immersive kind of

film the reality and represent it sincerely. This

documentary, within the concept and continuum which

type of cinema, which began between 1958 and 1962,

we can denominate as ‘Extended Reality’ (Milgram

more specifically in the Canadian province of Quebec

and Kishino, 1994). At the same time, these new

and in the United States, had Jean Rouch as its main

avenues which approach the documentary using technology as a mediator appear to have reached a peak

2  To see illustrations from this section and prints selected by the author, access: http://agifreu.com/img_catalogo_mostrabug/America_E.jpg

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53


representative. Another important innovation came

2.2 UNITED STATES

through social themes and civic engagement, the most representative project being Challenge for Change

Even though the United States is not a country that

(NFB, 1967-1980), which helped give voice to Canada’s

provides abundant public support for the production

poorer communities, empowering them with cameras and

of these kinds of documentaries, over the years

other recording devices. This seminal project of

various festivals and private initiatives have

traditional cinema inspired Filmmaker in Residence

proliferated and are worth mentioning. Such is

(Katerina Cizek, NFB, 2006) in the beginning of

the case of festivals like Tribeca, Sundance, and

the twenty-first century, and later the National

South by Southwest, among others, where interactive

Film Board’s flagship of modern transmedia documen-

and transmedia documentaries have been part of the

tary, Highrise (Katerina Cizek, NFB, 2009-2015) .

program for years. Various festivals have also

Throughout the years, the NFB has specialized in

introduced the interactive and transmedia documentary

four areas which converge and complement each other

category within their respective competitions.

in the field of nonfiction transmedia narrative:

However, perhaps the most interesting part of these

documentary, animation, education, and interaction .

festivals are the institutions for promotion and

NFB’s interactive and transmedia production is

financing: especially those of Tribeca and Sundance.

broad and diversified, and one can explore it in

The Ford Foundation also promotes this type of

the Interactive section of its web portal. From the

project with substantial support. At the level of

NFB, we highlight the following projects: Highrise,

research and development in educational projects,

Waterlife (Kevin McMahon, 2009) , Welcome to Pine

the MIT Open Documentary Lab stands out among the

Point (Paul Shoebridge and Michael Simons, 2011) ,

American research centers and groups.

3

4

5

6

7

8

Bear 71 (Jeremy Mendes and Leanne Allison, 2012)9,

Regarding production, we will highlight two names

A Journal of Insomnia (Thibaut Duverneix, Bruno

from the creative side: Sharon Daniel14 and Jonathan

Choinière, Guillaume Braun, and Philippe Lambert,

Harris15. Sharon Daniel is an artist who produces

2013) , In Limbo (Antoine Viviani, 2015) , Way to

interactive and participative documentaries focused

Go (Vincent Morisset, Philippe Lambert, Edouard

on the themes of social justice, economics, the envi-

Lanctôt-Benoir, and Caroline Robert, 2015)12, and

ronment, and the penal system, constructing online

The Enemy (Karim Ben Khelifa, 2017) .

archives and interfaces which approach the story of

10

11

13

marginalized communities beyond the social, cultural, and economic limits. Her noteworthy works include

Public Secrets (2008)16, Blood Sugar (Sharon Daniel 3  The NFB rehearsing Highrise (Blog Webdocs. Historias del siglo XXI – RTVE.ES) http://blog.rtve.es/webdocs/2016/01/9-filmmaker-in-residence-nfb-ensayando-highrise.html 4  www.outmywindow.nfb.ca. See page 106.

and Erik Loyer; Vectors Journal, 2010)17, Inside the

Distance (LINC-KU Leuven, STUK Arts Centre, Courtisane,

5  The seven wonders of the NFB (Blog Webdocs. Historias del siglo XXI – RTVE.ES) http://blog.rtve.es/webdocs/2016/04/2-las-siete-maravillas-del-nfb-parte-1.html 6  https://www.nfb.ca/interactive/ 7  https://www.nfb.ca/film/waterlife/ 8  https://www.nfb.ca/interactive/welcome_to_pine_point/ 9  https://bear71vr.nfb.ca/ 10  https://www.nfb.ca/interactive/a_journal_of_insomnia/ 11  https://www.nfb.ca/interactive/in_limbo/ 12  http://a-way-to-go.com/ 13  http://theenemyishere.org/

14  http://www.sharondaniel.net/. La travesía de Sharon Daniel: De Public Secrets a Inside the distance. Parte 1-3 (Blog Webdocs.

Historias del siglo XXI – RTVE.ES). http://blog.rtve.es/webdocs/2014/08/3.html 15  http://number27.org/. Jonathan Harris, el hombre orquestra (Blog

Webdocs. Historias del siglo XXI– RTVE.ES). http://blog.rtve.es/ webdocs/2016/02/4-jonathan-harris-el-hombre-orquestra.html 16  http://www.sharondaniel.net/#publicsecrets 17  http://www.sharondaniel.net/bloodsugar/


University of California - Santa Cruz, European

en el Che (2007). Regarding important creators, jour-

Forum for Restorative Justice, Suggonomé - Servicio

nalist Alvaro Liuzzi is one of the pioneers who has

de Mediación Flamenca, OPAK, 2013) , and Undoing

worked on the intersection between the documentary

Time PLEDGE/S.O.S. (2013)19. Jonathan Harris is

and journalism with an innovative concept: utilizing

a unique creator thanks to his education in both

nonfiction platforms with the objective of making the

photography and computer science, he works as a

audience relive Argentina’s key historical events,

Renaissance artist in that he has developed an

such as the thirtieth anniversary of the Falklands

extraordinary ability and dominion over various

War between Argentina and Great Britain, Rodolfo

codes and languages. Some of his noteworthy works

Walsh’s identity in Clave Digital, and the 30-year

include We Feel Fine (Jonathan Harris and Sep

celebration of the country’s democracy. Noteworthy

Kamvar, 2006) , Cowbird (2011) , I Love Your Work

are Proyecto Walsh (Alvaro Liuzzi)24 and Malvinas 30

(2013)22, and Network Effect (Jonathan Harris and

(Alvaro Liuzzi, 2012)25.

18

20

21

Greg Hochmuth, 2015) . 23

At the same time, the analysis would remain incomplete without mentioning the National University of Rosário’s Multimedia Communication department,

2.3 ARGENTINA

with its director Fernando Irigaray leading this unique project, and whose series of transmedia

Argentina is, without a doubt, the most prolific

documentaries, under the name DocuMedia Periodismo

Latin American country in this area. Argentina’s

Social Multimedia, has earned important recognition

events and activities related to interactive and

over the last few years, featuring Calles perdi-

transmedia documentaries are mainly concentrated

das (Documedia-UNR, 2013)26, and Mujeres en Venta

in the capital, Buenos Aires, and in the city

(Documedia-UNR, 2015)27.

of Rosário. Events such as Doc Buenos Aires,

Moreover, Argentina is the only Latin American

Doclab, Foro de Periodismo Digital-Encuentro de

country which has co-produced with the two global

Narrativas Transmedia de Rosário, Mediamorfosis,

public broadcasters that have invested the most in

Festival de Mar del Plata , and Ventana Sur have

interactive documentaries: ARTE and the National

included this style of narrative in their more

Film Board of Canada. For example, Primal (Bruno

recent editions.

Stagnaro, Caroline Hayeur, David Mongeau-Petitpas,

Regarding experimentation and production,

Manuel Archain, and Marc-Antoine Jacques, 2014)28 was

the multimedia specials of the newspaper Clarín

the first co-production between the Canadian institu-

(1996-2009) were the first pioneering nonfiction

tion and Argentina’s Canal Encuentro, the Argentine

works in the southern part of the Americas. It is

Ministry of Education’s television channel.

a group of more than 40 pieces directed by Gustavo Sierra and produced by the Clarin.com multimedia team, including El viaje que el Ernesto se convirtió

18  http://www.sharondaniel.net/inside-the-distance/ 19  http://www.sharondaniel.net/undoing-time/

24  http://proyectowalsh.com.ar/

20  http://wefeelfine.org/

25  https://docubase.mit.edu/project/malvinas-30/

21  http://cowbird.com/

26  http://www.documedia.com.ar/callesperdidas/

22  http://iloveyourwork.net/

27  http://www.documedia.com.ar/mujeres/. See page 110.

23  http://networkeffect.io/. See page 107.

28  http://primal.nfb.ca/es

CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN INTERACTIVE AND TRANSMEDIA DOCUMENTARY:...  ·  ARNAU GIFREU CASTELLS   ·  52-60

55


Paciente (Jorge Caballero, Gusano Films, 2016)33 and

2.4 COLOMBIA

Desarmados (Fabio Díaz Vergara, Paolo Morales Escobar Colombia is another emerging country in the southern

and Juan Sebastián Zuluaga, Department of Social

hemisphere that is involved in the production and

Communication, EAFIT University, 2017)34.

promotion of interactive and transmedia documentaries. The country counts on a consolidated network of events and markets related to audiovisual and

2.5. BRAZIL

new media: Bogotá Audiovisual Market, Festival

Internacional de Cine de Cartagena de Indias,

In Brazil, the development of interactive and transmedia

Colombia 4.0, Festival de la Imagen, Muestra

non-fiction presents solid foundations, although it

Internacional de Documental de Bogotá, Festival

is in an incipient state due to the lack of public

de Cine Creative Commons Bogotá, DocsBarcelona

subsidies and private investment. However, even with

Medellín, Ambulante Colombia, etc. Moreover,

this low investment, producers such as Cross Content,

there is a potent system of incentives promoted

under the leadership of Marcelo Bauer, have created

by the government and Proimágenes, with support

platforms such as ‘Webdocumentario35’, which host low

and public grants such as Crea Digital (Ministry

budget productions.

of Information and Communications Technologies),

Regarding research and education, two pioneers

the public grant for interactive web documentaries

in digital narratives, Denis Porto Renó and Vicente

(Ministry of Culture), the Fund for Film Development

Gosciola, have been dedicated to studying and edu-

(Proimágenes Colombia), New Media Colombia and

cating in the area of ​​ nonfiction from their two main

New Media Canada (Proimágenes Colombia), etc.

forms of expression: journalism and documentary. Also

In Colombia, as in Argentina, the first inter-

noteworthy is the work of the group of researchers

active nonfiction narratives began in the hands

and filmmakers who joined and created the Bug40436

of journalists. There were a series of interactive

platform, an initiative promoted by André Paz with

reports entitled Reportaje 360

produced by the new

the support of Julia Salles, Claudia Holanda, Katia

media team of El País Cali, under the direction of

Augusta Maciel and Mayra Jucá. Bug404 aims to con-

Felipe Lloreda. Beyond the El País Reportajes 360

tribute to the expansion of this field in Brazil, not

production, the following interactive and transmedia

only through the research and dissemination of studies

documentaries are also worth mentioning: 4 Ríos

on interactive narratives in the world and in Brazil,

(Elder M. Tobar, Orgánica Digital, Centro Ático

but also through conferences, courses, workshops and

Universidade Pontifícia Javeriana, Identity School

events. It has the merit of establishing a Brazilian

of Digital Arts; Animaedro Estúdio de Animação and

network on new narratives, offering knowledge and

Fundação Chasquis, 2011) ; Cuentos de viejos (Marcelo

technical support to create interactive documentaries

Dematei, Carlos Smith, Laura Piaggio, and Anna

and support the production of strategic projects such

Ferrer, Hierro Animación, Piaggiodematei and Señal

as Black-box and Bug Brazil.

29

30

Colombia, 2013) ; Pregoneros de Medellín (Ángela 31

Worth noting are some pioneering projects such

Carablí and Thibault Durand, Grupo Carabalí, 2015)32; 29  https://www.elpais.com.co/reportaje360/web/home.html

33  http://pacientedoc.com/

30  http://4rios.co/

34  http://desarmados.org/

31  http://cuentosdeviejos.com/

35  http://webdocumentario.com.br/

32  https://pregonerosdemedellin.com/#es

36  http://bug404.net/


as Canto do Brasil (Geoffrey Hiller, 2006)37, Rio

Télévisions, of the government via Centre National

de Janeiro: Autoretrato (Marcelo Bauer, Sérgio

du Cinéma et de l’Image Animée (CNC), and a group

Moraes, Giovanni Francischelli, and Lucian Rosa,

of producers such as Upian or Honkytonk Films, and

2011)38, Cup for Who (Maryse Williquet, Switch

other entities that contribute to the production

asbl, 2014)

39

Ilha Grande: Cada Praia, uma Ilha;

and growth of these kinds of works.

Cada Ilha, uma História (André Paz, 2016)40, and

ARTE, the main European broadcasting company,

The Sound of Bells (Marcia Mansur and Marina Thomé,

is an entity that has always shown an interest in

Crude Studio, 2017) .

cultural and artistic products, boosting local culture

41

at a number of levels. Its web department has always invested in non-linear forms and non-fiction genres

3. THE STATE OF DEVELOPMENT IN EUROPE

42

(especially journalism and documentaries). All the French experience acquired in the 90s with optical disc formats (CD Roms and DVDs) has, a number of decades

3.1 FRANCE

later, translated into constant innovation in both Since the beginning, France was the European

user experience and internet usability.

nation that most invested in interactive and

In addition to this base structure, we have to

transmedia documentary narratives. The French

consider a circuit of markets and festivals that allows

audiovisual and new medias system has a variety

for the development, funding, production, exhibition

of incentives that started out from, and are

and distribution of such works. Just to mention a few,

based on, three key pillars: firstly, the fact

we highlight Cross Video Days (Paris), Sunny Side of

that film was born and began in this country

the Doc (La Rouchelle) or Marché du Film (Cannes).

(1895), which gives France a long cinematographic

Produced in France, we recommend the following

tradition along with other nations such as the

projects: Gaza-Sderot Life in spite of everything

United State. Secondly, it is a nation that

(Khalil al Muzayyen, Robby Elmaliah, Films/Trabelsi

has invested in innovation and technological

Productions, The Sapir College, Ramattan Studios, Bo

experimentation across a variety of fields; and

Travail!, Upian, 2008)44; Prison Valley (David Dufresne,

finally, and perhaps most importantly: it has

Philippe Brault, Upian, ARTE, 2010)45; Alma. A Tale of

a system of incentives and public aid in the

violence (Miquel Dewever-Plana, Isabelle Fougère, Arte,

area of film and new medias that plays a role

Upian, 2012)46; Type:rider (Cosmografik, Agat Films &

in expanding French culture. A good part of

Cie, Ex Nihilo, BulkyPix, ARTE, 2013)47; Do Not Track

the interactive and transmedia productions are

(Brett Gaylor, Upian, ARTE, ONF, BR, 2016)48; Dada-Data

the recipients of generous funding from public

(Anita Hugi and David Dufresne, Akufen, RSI, RTS, SRF,

broadcasting companies, such as ARTE , or France

ARTE, 2016)49 and Phallaina (Marietta Ren, Smallbang,

43

CNC, FranceTV Nouvelles Ecritures, 2016)50. 37  http://www.hillerphoto.com/brazil/intro.htm 38  http://riodejaneiroautorretrato.com.br/dev2011/Content/Swf/ index_portugues.html. See page 109. 39  http://www.copaparaquem.com/. See page 119.

44  http://gaza-sderot.arte.tv/

40  http://www.ilhagrandewebdoc.website/. See page 108.

45  http://prisonvalley.arte.tv/?lang=en. See page 110.

41  http://somdossinos.com.br/. See page 135.

46  http://alma.arte.tv/. See page 121.

42  To see illustrations from this section and prints selected

47  http://typerider.arte.tv/#/

by the author, access:

48  https://donottrack-doc.com/en/. See page 110.

http://agifreu.com/img_catalogo_mostrabug/Europe_E.jpg

49  http://dada-data.net/en/

43  https://www.arte.tv/sites/en/webproductions/

50  http://phallaina.nouvelles-ecritures.francetv.fr/. See page 121.

CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN INTERACTIVE AND TRANSMEDIA DOCUMENTARY:...  ·  ARNAU GIFREU CASTELLS   ·  52-60

57


VSB Fund, Gasterra, 2010)52; Unspeak (Tommy Pallotta,

3.2 THE NETHERLANDS

Submarine Channel, VPRO, Creative Industries Fund The Netherlands is another important actor in

NL, Dutch Cultural Media Fund, Netherlands Ministry

this field for two specific reasons: firstly,

of Culture, The City of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

for developing the IDFA Doclab , the interac-

Film Fund, 2013)53 and Last Hijack Interactive (Tommy

tive section of the International Documentary

Pallotta and Femke Wolting, Razor Film, ZDF, IKON,

Film Festival of Amsterdam, the world’s most

Creative Industries Fund NL, The City of Amsterdam,

important documentary film festival along with

The Dutch Cultural Media Fund, The Netherlands Film

Toronto’s Hot Docs Festival in Canada. For over

Fund, 2014)54.

51

10 years, the IDFA Doclab has awarded prizes to the best interactive documentaries in its yearly competition; it holds screenings, a conference,

3.3 ENGLAND

guided browsing, and various other events at the end of November. It also co-produces proj-

England is a country that, similarly to the

ects for the promotion of knowledge and digital

Netherlands, has two or three important centers.

preservation (Moments of Innovation, Online

Bristol’s I-Docs conference, launched in 2011, has

Database, etc.). Secondly, the country’s VPRO

become the world’s leading conference on interactive

public broadcasting company provides generous

documentaries55. The symposium is held biannually

funding for interactive and transmedia works in

and organized by Judith Ashton, Sandra Gaudenzi, and

both fiction and nonfiction.

Mandy Rose. It brings together the majority of the

Finally, the production companies are the

people interested in this field from the academic

third player, particularly the Submarine Channel,

perspective, as most of the researchers in this

one of the most prolific producers of interac-

area are based in the country, even though they

tive documentaries in the world. This Dutch studio

may not originally be from England, many develop

is specialized in transmedia narratives, and was

their academic careers in the country.

founded in 2000 by Bruno Felix and Femke Wolting.

Secondly, the BBC (British Broadcasting

They currently have studios in Amsterdam and Los

Corporation) has developed a few initiatives that have

Angeles, and while in the first few years they

stimulated development and production in the field,

specialized in the development and production of

such as the BBC Taster56 or the BBC Commercial Studio57

interactive linear films, over the last few years

with platforms for the creation and development of

the company’s goal has been to create important

digital narratives. Lastly, we must mention that the

transmedia projects with a special emphasis on

country has high level academic studies in the field

interactive animation and digital games.

and prestigious centers (such as the DCRC-Digital

From the Netherlands, we would like to high-

Cultures Research Centre of the University of the West

light three interactive nonfiction projects produced

of England, Interactive Storytelling LAB of Westminster

by the Submarine Channel: Collapsus: The Energy

Risk Conspiracy (Tommy Pallotta, Submarine Channel, VPRO, Dutch Cultural Media Fund, SNS Reaal Fund,

52  http://www.collapsus.com/ 53  https://unspeak.submarinechannel.com/ 54  http://lasthijack.submarinechannel.com/ 55  http://i-docs.org/ 56  https://www.bbc.co.uk/taster/

51  https://www.doclab.org/

57  http://www.bbc.co.uk/connectedstudio/


University, etc.) as well as an interesting circuit

(Audiovisual Innovation Lab) is unique in the world,

of events and festivals that foster the creation

created by the RTVE (Lab RTVE)61 Interactive Media

and funding of interactive documentaries: Sheffield

Department, which is a small, highly-qualified team

Doc/Fest, Mozilla Festival, etc.

dedicated to constant experimentation with new narrative

Although England’s production has not stood

languages. The RTVE Lab started with a high level of

out in the field, we do find good examples of the

activity in its first years, and eventually focused on

intersection between journalism and documentaries

co-producing webdocs via the Factoría de webdocs, and

in The Guardian, and in the following projects:

more recently, creating content for Playz, the RTVE.

Global Guide to the First World War (Francesca

ES platform for exclusively digital content.

Panetta, Lindsay Poulton and Iain Chambers, The

Guardian, Kiln.it, 2014)

The second important factor in Spain is

and The Shirt on your

the DocsBarcelona62 festival that since 2013 has

Back (Lindsay Poulton, The Guardian, WorldView,

promoted its interactive and transmedia section

2014) . We also highlight Anyone’s Child Mexico:

interDocs Barcelona, which includes conferences,

families for safer drug control (Matthew Brown,

interactive web browsing, case studies, exhi-

Ewan Cass-Kavanagh, Mary Ryder and Jane Slater,

bition, hackathons, and an interactive pitch.

University of Bristol, 2017) .

The festival has grown especially over the past

58

59

60

five years, and currently aims to promote the documentary medium worldwide, comprising three

3.4 SPAIN

festivals in three countries: Barcelona (Spain), Medellín (Colombia) and Valparaíso (Chile). The

Spain offers a wide range of interactive nonfic-

project also includes a school (DocsSchool) and

tion projects, but most of them are low-budget

one of the most wide-ranging distribution systems

productions. Although Spain has created a certain

for documentary films, the DocsBarcelona del Mes,

level of interest and expectation through good

which has 95 screening rooms in Spain and various

training and an efficient system of distribution

Latin American countries. Finally, there are also a

and screenings via well-established festivals

number of Spanish production companies, among them

(DocsBarcelona, Documenta Madrid, Medimed, etc.),

we would like to highlight Barret Films63, based in

there has been virtually no funding available.

the city of Valencia, specialized in interactive

This has limited the growth of these works, while

and transmedia documentaries committed to social

at the same time it is a clear sign that it is

and activist themes.

possible to produce with few resources, a lot

We would like to mention the following works for

of creativity, and alternative funding sources.

their impact and narrative innovation: Montelab (Lab

We must first mention Spain’s most important

RTVE, Documentos TV, 2014)64; 0 responsables (Barret

broadcasting company: Radio Televisión Española.

Films, 2015)65; Las Sinsombrero (Tània Balló, Manuel

Spain’s Laboratorio de Innovación Audiovisual

Jiménez and Serrana Torres, Intropía Media, Yo la

58  https://www.theguardian.com/world/ng-interactive/2014/jul/23/a-global-guide-to-the-first-world-war-interactive-

61  http://www.rtve.es/lab/

documentary

62  http://www.docsbarcelona.com/

59  https://www.theguardian.com/world/ng-interactive/2014/apr/

63  https://barret.coop/

bangladesh-shirt-on-your-back

64  http://lab.rtve.es/montelab/

60  http://mexico.anyoneschild.org/

65  http://www.0responsables.com/?l=ca

CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN INTERACTIVE AND TRANSMEDIA DOCUMENTARY:...  ·  ARNAU GIFREU CASTELLS   ·  52-60

59


perdono, RTVE, Ministerio de Educación, 2015)66;

We would also like to highlight the training and

Bugarach. Como sobrevivir al Apocalipsis (Sergi

research that has been taking place in research centers

Cameron, Nanook Films, Lab RTVE, Interactius and

and universities, as is the case of RMIT University and

Playfilm, 2016)67 and Sexo, maracas y chihuahuas

its non/fiction Lab, under the leadership of Adrian

(Minimal Films, Lab RTVE, TVC, Labyrinth Studio,

Miles and Francesca Rendle-Short. We would like to

2016)68.

highlight the following works from Australia: Long

Journey, Young Lives (David Goldie and Hilary Balmond, ABC, 2002)72, Africa to Australia (SBS Online, 2010)73,

4. THE STATE OF DEVELOPMENT IN AUSTRALIA69

The Block: Stories form a Meeting Place (Matt Smith, Alicia Hamilton and Poppy Stockell, SBS, 2012)74, The

Australia has two main broadcasting companies

Boat (Matt Huynh, SBS Online, 2015)75, I’m Your Man

that have developed an interest in transmedia

(Kylie Boltin and Damian McDermott, SBS, 2017)76 and

and interactive narrative content: they are the

Kgari (Ella Rubeli, Boris Etingof and Kylie Boltin,

Special Broadcasting Service (SBS)70 and the

SBS, 2017)77.

Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). SBS has produced the most important and representative works in the field since 2010, while the pioneering work was first developed by ABC. We must also mention Screen Australia71, the federal government agency dedicated to fostering film production, development, and promotion.

Screen Australia ’s mission is to inspire, inform, and involve the public through Australian stories, offering aid and incentives starting from the pitching

REFERENCES

GIFREU-CASTELLS, A. (2013). El documental interactivo: estado de desarrollo actual. Obra Digital, 5. pp. 29-55.Vic: Universidad de Vic. ISSN: 2014-5039. https://www.raco.cat/index.php/ ObraDigital/article/view/264707/352399 GIFREU-CASTELLS, A. (2017). Interactive Documentary Aqui y Ahora (Here & Now) Themes and Directions in South America. Judith Aston; Sandra Gaudenzi; Mandy Rose (Eds.): (2017). i-Docs: The Evolving Practices of Interactive Documentary. New York: Columbia University Press. ISBN: 023118123X. MILGRAM, P.; Kishino, F. (1994). A Taxonomy of Mixed Reality Visual Displays. IEICE Transactions on Information and Systems, E77-D, 1321-1329. http://www.alice.id.tue.nl/references/ milgram-kishino-1994.pdf

and writing stages, funding writers and filmmaking teams, as well as production and postproduction, so that authors can develop and finish films. They launched the category Focus on interactive a few years ago to stimulate and promote the production of interactive documentaries. 66  https://www.lassinsombrero.com/ 67  http://lab.rtve.es/webdocs/bugarach/ 68  http://lab.rtve.es/webdocs/xavier-cugat/ 69  To see illustrations from this section and prints selected by the author, access: http://agifreu.com/img_catalogo_mostrabug/Australia_E.jpg 70  https://www.sbs.com.au/features

72  http://www.abc.net.au/longjourney/documentary_broadband.html

71  https://www.screenaustralia.gov.au/. Titles produced – Focus

73  http://www.sbs.com.au/africatoaustralia/

on interactive – Screen Australia

74  http://www.sbs.com.au/theblock/

https://www.screenaustralia.gov.au/fact-finders/production

75  http://www.sbs.com.au/theboat/

-trends/documentary-production/focus-on-interactive/

76  http://www.sbs.com.au/imyourman/

titles-produced

77  http://www.sbs.com.au/kgari/


The

interactive

installation,

The

Sound

of

Bells , presented for the first time at The BUG 2

Exhibition, is part of a larger project of the same name, which includes a mobile application, an interactive documentary, a linear documentary, and traveling exhibitions in the cities where the images and sounds were captured. This transmedia work intends to honor the more than 40 sounds of bells recognized as intangible cultural heritage in nine cities in Minas Gerais.

INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES

Marcia Mansur and Marina Thomé, the founders of

Estúdio CRUA in São Paulo, are the project’s

MEDIA AND PLATFORMS ECHO IN THE SOUND OF BELLS

creators.

Both

started

their

careers

in

the

field of interactive narratives in 2011 on opposite sides of the Atlantic without knowing one another. Marina graduated from the Universitat

Autònoma de Barcelona’s first Master’s program in interactive documentary. Her first i-doc was

BY JÉSSICA CRUZ1

Las Sombras del Progreso3, produced in Spain. Marcia was part of the resident coordination team at UnionDocs, an American, nonprofit organization which produces documentaries and has been a great promoter of interactive digital narratives. Living Los Sures4, a web doc which became a UnionDocs benchmark, was produced by residents she was directing at the time. In

this

interview,

Marcia

and

Marina

tell

us

about what happened behind the scenes of their most important work, about the production models they have been testing, and their perspectives on financing projects in the area.

1  Jéssica Cruz has a degree in Journalism from Casper Líbero College (São Paulo). She works as an audiovisual producer, and is the producer of the linear documentaries Filhos da AIDS (2012) and Carolina (2016), as well as the interactive documentary Bixiga Existe (2017).

2  www.somdossinos.com.br. See page 135. 3  http://www.sombrasdelprogreso.com/

4  http://lossur.es/ BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 61


whole, we knew what we were going to film, how

HOW WAS ESTÚDIO CRUA BORN? Marina

Thomé

(MT):

The

Sound

we were going to film it, had already described

of

Bells

was

really the founder, because I met Marcia, I think it was 2012, and she was working with anthropology

and

intangible

heritage

and

I

was working with technology and documentary, and we wanted to create some kind of project together that dealt with intangible heritage and new media. Crua was founded through The

Sound of Bells, you could say, because we had these international experiences, and here in Brazil in 2012 there wasn’t all that much,

what characters we wanted to find, for example, and the bell ringers, that we already had these representatives of youth, of tradition, it was also something to talk about with the community, we had a relationship of characters, we wanted a midwife, because there was going to be a question of the birth and death of the bell, gravediggers, a sculptor, a vendor who worked with saints... In the countryside, when we got there, we discovered the characters, but we had already mapped all this out.

especially in the area of promoting cultural

In technical terms, the web doc needed more immer-

heritage.

sive scenes, so we already went with this more immersive camera, which went up and down stairs, got details of the towers’ facades, got the names

HOW WAS THE SOUND OF BELLS FINANCED? Marcia Mansur (MM): The cultural field is very different from the fields of entertainment and advertising, it is an area with less funding. At

of the bell ringers inside, in the rock, we already knew that we wanted to show the tower bit by bit, we did not want any wide shots, you can see there are very few wide shots.

the time, we got a grant from Eletrobrás, which I think does not exist anymore, for intangible

AND EVERYTHING WENT AS PLANNED?

cultural heritage, so this idea of making a transmedia project was not in the grant appli-

MT: We made a mistake: we didn’t get the GPS coor-

cation, it was not a technology-based incen-

dinates of all the churches we went to, and this

tive, it was for intangible heritage, except

was a problem for the app, because we did not get

ours was the only proposal that came up with a

the coordinates and later we had to find them and

project involving new media, so we won.

it made for a ton of work. As it is a transmedia project, there was a lot of field work, we had to capture sound, we had the interviews for the

AND HOW WAS THE PRODUCTION PROCESS FOR THE SOUND OF BELLS, INCLUDING ALL THE TRANSMEDIA WORK?

app, the coordinates of the churches, the photos, frames for the app, all the material for the film, which has a much different time than what was

MT: We went out in the field, collected some

planned, the editing was more spaced out, there is

of the audiovisual repertory, and also did

a whole thing with popular faith, so we had a lot

research. When we got there to record, we had a

of material to capture with different audiovisual

document called the form of the film, a little

directions, but mostly we managed to think it out

of the audiovisual format of the project as a

before, I think just the web doc theme inside the


tower was something from after the editing and

the area of culture, it is much more difficult

the main concept, and the the app itself made

to find programmers, they charge per hour and

for a lot of work, I think the application was

are very expensive, so that was a big problem,

the most work.

I think it is a big problem. And I think the directors too, documentary makers, we see this a lot in classes, they are not familiar with web

IN TERMS OF THE TEAM, WHAT WAS NEW? DID YOU HAVE ANY DIFFICULTY FINDING QUALIFIED PROFESSIONALS?

documentaries, so they do not know how to deal with the scope of the technology, they do not know what to demand.

MT: We hired 40 people who worked on this project, but there was a core team, the editors and the assistant editors, because we had

a

lot

of

image

editing.

In

terms

of

technology, we had a company which made the app in Rio de Janeiro, and later a programmer who made the web doc in São Paulo. There was an art director who did everything, she was really great. I think that, in terms of design, we had less trouble with interfaces, because Haydee Uekubo, who is the creation person, is someone who worked for a long time

MM: It was great that the technology professionals we worked with enjoyed making a documentary project, they had a certain liberty in creating, because most technology jobs are much more rigid. So, I remember that they also liked it, a few really bet on it, because a documentary project which uses technology is rare, that is, at the time, today it is a little more common, but 4 years ago, it was a little rarer for these professionals we worked with. So, I think everyone enjoyed it as well.

in an advertising agency, so she is someone who thinks very quickly in interface and she made

the

brand,

the

solutions...The

women

WHICH PRODUCTS WERE PLANNED FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE SOUND OF BELLS?

worked hard, the programmer, art director, screenwriter for the film, myself, Marcia,

MM: We had already come up with the format we were

the producer Julia Franceschinni, local pro-

going to use: a feature film, an interactive doc-

duction, so we had a lot of women on the

umentary, a multimedia platform, an app geo-ref-

team. As far as programming, I think it is

erenced by the sounds of bells in Minas Gerais,

tough to find a team, the person is generally

and a return to all nine cities we recorded in to

a programmer and works with websites, it is

make a projection on the external facade of the

difficult to find someone who works with user

churches in these cities. So the idea was that

experience and web documentary, it is very

each of these products would have a different

difficult to find that. I think people are

public and different content, starting from the

being trained to work with technology and

same arsenal of material.

user experience, programming for storytelling, but I do not think it is easy to find, especially in the area of culture, because

TALK A LITTLE ABOUT THE MATERIAL YOU CAPTURED. HOW WAS IT USED?

advertising has so much money. The Sound of

Bells budget was R$297 thousand for all the

MM:

products, which is nothing, right? So, in

video, more than 40 interviews, many parties,

Our

MEDIA END PLATAFORMS ECHO IN THE SOUND OF BELLS  ·  BY JÉSSICA CRUZ   ·  61-67

production

had

about

100

hours

of

63


processions... From this content, we had to

has

an

architectural

configuration,

where

the

The

sun hits it, the type of bell, the sound, so in

Sound of Bells. The application, for exam-

this web documentary, the idea was that you were

ple, which has more than 100 audio tracks,

immersed in the towers, the form of navigation

we have about 45 churches geo-referenced in

also fit well with this trajectory we follow, you

the app and some audio from each of these

are heading up, there is a video that asks “Do

churches, which are the sounds of bells as

you want to meet the bell ringers?”, you click

well

and go up the tower, through vertical navigation,

pull

out

as

the

products

interviews

which

with

made

bell

up

ringers

and

you get to know these bell ringers, each one has

with the surrounding community.

a role there. There

HOW DOES THE APP WORK?

is

a

navigation

which

is

the

opposite,

downwards, which is vertical, but you enter, you MM: You have to chart your path to the church,

scroll down to the bell section, in this section

the idea was to work a bit with this open air

we made something in parallax, something more

audio-guide concept and work with the public

exciting, with audio from people, and talking

which visited these churches in Minas Gerais.

a bit about the bell itself, what material it

But also a young public, we wanted the project

is made of, harmony, the musical notes, we made

to relate to these newer generations, boys who

something

ring these bells every day, 14, 15-year-old

animation, and text.

boys, who spend their adolescence there in the tower and are filming themselves, posting themselves on YouTube. We also thought that it would be great if this content were available on cell phones so they could see themselves as well.

more

focused

on

audio,

photography,

For the ringing section, we made an animation focused on the clock, so when the user enters, the system already recognizes through their IP what time it is where they are, now it is 1:20 PM and at this time some bell rings in Minas Gerais, we wanted to speak a little about the relationship between the bell and time, the clock is a circular menu and you see the different rings which depend

HOW WAS THE WEB DOCUMENTARY, SPECIFICALLY THE SOUND OF BELLS, CONCEIVED?

on the time of day where you are, and that is the web documentary The Sound of Bells.

MT: In the web documentary, the idea was to provide an immersive experience in the uni-

AND THE INTERACTIVE INSTALLATION?

verse of the towers. We saw in the cities in the traveling cinema that the towers are

MT: What is interesting is that, for The BUG

rarely visited, right? They are not a tourist

Exhibition, we made a new product that is The

spot, because there is also a question of dan-

Sound of Bells’ 6th product. At the exhibition,

ger, they are not well preserved, the physical

there are three projectors which connect the tower

access

really

universe, and you ate immersed in these images.

curious about getting to know the universe of

There is some content from the web doc, and in one

the bell ringers, of the towers. Each tower

of the projectors there is new content.

is

not

easy,

so

people

were


WHAT IS THE PRODUCTION ARRANGEMENT AT ESTÚDIO CRUA?

HOW ARE NEW NARRATIVES BEING DEVELOPED IN BRAZIL?

MM: We work on two main fronts, one is CRUA

MT: In Brazil, we have had a series of invest-

Doc, which is our original production company

ments, as much public, SPCine itself is trying to

for linear documentaries, and CRUA Lab, which

do this creative economy workshop which involves

is the education area. We have concentrated

transmedia...There are some companies popping up,

the better part of our transmedia and inter-

focused on virtual reality. Brazil has started to

active projects in the field of education,

appear more in these international fairs, also

whether theoretical or practical. Last year,

these

we

making

which are increasingly taking up space, first

collective maps of São Paulo neighborhoods,

in advertising and now in entertainment, which

and this year we have already extended these

involves film, there are plenty of festivals with

collective works a little more, making two- to

VR, and I think Brazil is starting to create some

three-month laboratories on specific themes.

alternatives along these lines.

developed

this

hackathon

model,

Beyond a series of workshops in festivals, we participated in the photography festival in Tiradentes. This year, we have had a strategy of international circulation, we will go to a residency in France, we are going to give a Master Class in Spain on producing transmedia projects for intangible heritage, in Lisbon we are giving a workshop on cultural heritage and new media, so this area of cultural heritage and the use of new medias is quite tied to my expertise and to Marina’s, which is in

large

producers

with

interactive

cores

When we made The Sound of Bells, it was a totally new thing, and I think it still is for the area of cultural heritage. I think one path for interactive narratives is that of social impact. I think beyond entertainment, in a country like Brazil, which has the necessity of working with human rights, social impacts, a transmedia strategy is very important, as much for reaching a larger public as for making projects that can help make external support and networking viable.

anthropology, digital communication, design,

I think that CRUA sees much of this in our work

photography, documentary...

and education, we produce collaboratively, we have

MT: In CRUA Doc, we are in the distribution stage for Gary, which is a short film, we are finalizing and distributing The Sound of Bells, which we just sold to the Canal Brasil channel, it should run in August. Alzira Espindola, we just won the Itaú Cultural grant to develop a feature film on her life, so, we are working on these projects now.

the idea of making partnerships to work with VR in the next laboratories. In terms of technology, it keeps changing, each year it changes a lot, every class we give has new technology to speak about and discuss, the cell phone itself, in terms of

production,

changes

audiovisual

production

significantly, Brazil is trying to keep up, but it is difficult, because abroad they are already at another level, they are already discussing audiovisual preservation in transmedia.

MEDIA END PLATAFORMS ECHO IN THE SOUND OF BELLS  ·  BY JÉSSICA CRUZ   ·  61-67

65


WHAT CHALLENGES HAVE YOU FACED?

DO PRIVATE COMPANIES ALREADY SEE THE NEW NARRATIVES AS A GOOD INVESTMENT?

MT: One is us being able to get education and training, it is an issue, because when we

MT: Private investment will continue increasing,

do these laboratories, there are people from

advertising itself already revolves around sto-

many different areas, there is a filmmaker,

rytelling, because we talk about the journey of

a photographer, a designer, a researcher, an

the user, but in the case of advertising, it is

architect, and there are very few undergrad-

the journey of the consumer, everyone has a cell

uate courses, technical courses, so much so

phone, companies will invest in this because it

that SPCine is creating these courses, calling

is where the consumers are. Digital investment is

on these companies to be able to create under-

increasing, and has already surpassed that of TV.

graduate courses. So I think that education is

Except that in our area, which is social impact

an issue we need to face. Two: bandwidth in

and cultural heritage, it is very difficult for

Brazil, we deal with this problem a lot, we

a company to invest, because when you work with

have to give classes, even in São Paulo, there

social impact, I am not talking about a company

is not good enough internet to give classes in

that says a woman’s beauty is what matters, I

large institutions.

am talking about social impact which involves a series of political viewpoints, they will not

And, certainly, public investment in this, the

want to expose themselves, it is not advertising.

grants are very small, the people are not very well paid in any sense, as I said, technology

So

projects are very expensive, the workers are

rights, there has to be funding. I think it is

in

the

area

of

cultural

heritage,

human

paid per hour, so it is not easy to hire at

a difficulty, for example, it is the same fight

low a cost. With technology, you need devices,

social institutions have in getting financing for

you make a 360º exhibition in VR, you need to

their projects, like Greenpeace, UNICEF, Amnesty

have Google Cardboard, good internet, cables,

International, what we fight for at CRUA is work-

wires, you need to have advanced technology.

ing with transmedia projects on human rights, but

LED, we do a lot with projectors, the big

where is the funding for what is not advertising,

spaces do not have projectors, how can you do

and not private interest?

an interactive exhibition? It is very difficult, I went to a Bill Viola exhibition, there are amazing projectors, projecting on granite, imagine how much it costs, it is a lot of money. How can you be a visual artist and work with a projector and VR? That costs money! Lack of investment, education, and bandwidth, these are the challenges.

THE INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY, ENTREVILAS5, BY ESTÚDIO CRUA, IS ALSO IN THE BUG EXHIBITION. WHAT IS THE STORY BEHIND THIS PRODUCTION? MM: Entrevilas was a beautiful project, we had been developing the thematic element for a while, so we had already worked with the city of São Paulo, and we understood that the workers’ villages would be an incredible narrative device

5  www.entrevilasdoc.com.br. See page 115.


for speaking about the history of São Paulo,

housing, what it is like to live in a house that

for speaking about work relations and issues

is a heritage site, another group talked about

which remain current, such as immigration and

the sports they have in these villages, which

forms of housing in the city. We presented a

is something that unites the older people, the

laboratory project to the SESC Research and

history of the villages, and a group which talked

Training Center, which has been a CRUA partner

a lot about the Perus neighborhood, where there

for 3 years now, this was another goal of ours.

is an old factory and a village which you cannot

We

go into anymore.

developed

a

methodology

for

hackathons,

which are 6 days long, 8 hours a day, with 15 to 20 people, so it is an intensive marathon, which has this urgency which unites people in collaborative creations. But we want to try something more long term, more extensive, narrative possibilities related to technology, so we can get deeper in this. That was the proposal for this three-month laboratory on workers’ villages.

MM: They created this concept of an imaginary village, so they did not do the main navigation through the villages. They used the main components of the São Paulo workers’ villages, most of them had a factory, houses, recreation areas, they had a school, guard house, so these are all elements of control, they made it so the workers did not have to leave, they did not need to spread out, they did not spend time going to work, so

MT: The project was really wonderful, with

it was all an environment of control...What they

14 people, each group made really interesting

did was search for more poetic connections within

choices, they went to five different workers’

this content.

villages. There was a group that spoke about


INTRODUCTION

In 1995, after four years of development, Nintendo

IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES

launched the Virtual Boy, one of the first commercial devices to use stereoscopic 3D images.3 However, the Virtual Boy failed to sell, and with

THE VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCE FROM THE NARRATIVE PERSPECTIVE: ENVISIONING MULTIPLE REALITIES

its launch limited to a few territories, its production was stopped the year after it came out. 20 years later, the outlook regarding virtual reality (VR) is much different. In 2016, around 6 million VR headsets were sold - 11 million counting Google Cardboard, a VR device made of cardboard and often distributed for free.4

Virtual Boy is considered to be the precursor to the modern virtual reality headset and ended up coming back into fashion among nostalgic fans. What one can realize is that the 1990s hardware did not

JULIA SALLES1 AND MARÍA LAURA RUGGIERO2

allow for a comfortable virtual reality experience. In Virtual Boy, the images were bichromatic (using only black and red), the display device was very large and uncomfortable, causing pain in the eyes and head after a while, and it was also very expensive by the standards of that time. Only in recent years have technological conditions allowed for the resurgence of virtual reality. Among professionals of the field, 2015 is commonly cited as year 0 for virtual reality, as the release of Samsung’s Gear headset (Oculus),

1  Julia Salles is a producer and curator of interactive and immersive media. Julia is also a professor in the Communication Department of the Université de Montréal (UdeM, Canada) and a PhD candidate in Communication at the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM).

followed by Oculus Rift in the beginning of 2016,

3  Stereoscopy is a binocular imaging technique that works as follows: when capturing the image, two lenses aligned on the horizontal axis record images of the same scene with a distance corresponding to the distance between the left and right eyes of the human vision system. The stereoscopic image is then shown

2  María Laura Ruggiero is a film producer and screenwriter and narrative designer at SeirenFilms. She holds a degree in Image and Sound Design (UBA, Argentina) and is a teacher and consultant of new interactive media projects around the world. She is also the founder and creative director of StoryHackers.

on a binocular device that on the right eye displays the image captured by the lens to the right of the recording device (the same procedure is applied to the left eye). Thus, the sensation of depth is restored in a similar way to the process of human vision, which estimates the depth based on the triangulation between the observed object and the positions of the left and right eyes. The same procedure can apply to synthesis images.

4  https://www.statista.com/statistics/752110/

global-vr-headset-sales-by-brand/ BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 68


marked the starting point for greater access

their head: looking to the sides, up and down, and

to VR content.

tilting their head. However, if the participant

But, after all, what is virtual reality?

moves their body in the space (without altering the

Virtual reality is an immersive, audiovisual

position of their head), the 360 virtual image does

experience which offers the public the illusion

not change. To move the body in the space, other

of presence in a virtual environment through

“degrees of freedom” are required. Six degrees of

360 image techniques and spatial audio. The fact

freedom, or 6DoF, refers to the possibility of the

that the image is in 360o allows the participant

image reacting to the participant’s movements to

to look at all sides during the VR experience

the sides, to the front/back, and up/down. Thus in

(vision is not restricted to the framing of a

6DoF format, along with the head movements, the

2D screen). If besides being 360o, the image is

image also reacts to the body’s movements in space.

also stereoscopic, the perception

of depth and

In the case of 360 VR (3DoF), in order to have

volume is even more accentuated. One can add to

the experience, the participant needs a virtual

this

spatial audio (or ambisonic),

reality headset (preferably one with headphones)

which allows for the positioning of audio sources

and 360 content. The 6DoF experience requires a

in a virtual sphere surrounding the participant,

somewhat more complex device, since beyond the

imitating the sonic experience of the physical

headset and specific content, it is often necessary

world. Beyond image and sound simulations, some

to have external sensors, joysticks, and a computer

virtual reality experiences seek to activate

with a very powerful processor and graphic card.

other senses, including the olfactory and tac-

All of the elements which are necessary for the

tile. In that sense, Burdea and Coiffet propose

6DoF experience end up making the consumption of

the following definition: “Virtual reality is

this type of technology expensive, which diminishes

a high technology interface between user and

its accessibility. Nowadays there are many types

computer, which uses real time simulation and

of virtual reality headsets on the market. The

interactions via various sensory channels. Sensory

hardware scene has evolved rapidly, and therefore

modalities include the visual, auditory, tactile,

any commentary about the equipment runs the risk

olfactory, and taste.” (Burdea & Coiffet, 2003,

of quickly becoming outdated.

image the

p. 3). All these characteristics contribute to

As far as the content, some of the main dis-

a strong impression of being transported to the

tribution platforms for VR narrative experiences

virtual space.

are SteamVR, Oculus, and Within. On these plat-

In some types of VR experiences, it is

forms, it is possible to download games, videos,

also possible to “move” within the image. The

and other experiences, such as Kurious, by Cirque

concept of degrees of freedom (often referred

du Soleil. Content production and distribution for

to as DoF), became quite popular for classify-

virtual reality has also gained force in the field

ing the degree of interactivity with the image

of journalism: The Guardian, The New York Times,

in VR devices. In 360o images (stereoscopic or

AJ+, and ARTE are examples of pioneering outlets

not), there are 3 degrees of freedom: the gaze

in the area of VR journalism. As Marcelle Hopkins,

can move along the horizontal, vertical, and

deputy video editor and co-director of virtual

diagonal axis. In this case, the image reacts

reality at The New York Times states: “Journalists

to movements which the participant can make with

and technologists from various parts of The New

THE VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCE FROM THE...  ·  JULIA SALLES AND MARÍA LAURA RUGGIERO   ·  68-76

69


York Times started experimenting with virtual

narratives have passed through various degrees

reality a few years ago. We launched NYT VR in

of immersion and connection with the audience.

November 2015 when we published the V.R. doc-

The emergence of the digital world has not only

umentary The Displaced (about three children

generated the possibility of creating a synthetic

displaced by war), and distributed more than

hyper-realism, but has also opened the doors to

one million Google Cardboard headsets to our

transmedia narratives, recreating a world of enter-

subscribers. Since then, we’ve produced more

tainment which today allows for participation in

than 20 V.R. films, and we learn a lot with each

the creative process and a broad range of options

one” (Hopkins, 2017).

for interacting with the stories.

Film festivals have also played an important

The digital world has opened the door to a

role in disseminating virtual reality content

large amount of changes which have generated a

by creating programs dedicated to showing VR

reconfiguration of roles in the film and audiovi-

narratives. Significant cases of film festivals

sual industry. Without discarding the past and the

opening up to virtual reality include the New

present, the immersive future emerges as a con-

Frontier program of the Sundance Film Festival,

struction filled with challenges for creators and

DocLab of the IDFA (International Documentary

participants. Attention, empathy, users, prototypes,

Film Festival of Amsterdam), and more recently,

and interactivity are some of the terms which are

Venice VR, the Venice Film Festival’s program

beginning to take central roles in audiovisual

dedicated to virtual reality.

creation. We have observed the transformation of

As one can observe, the forms of dissemina-

linear stories into universal narratives, of the

tion and consumption of virtual reality present

audiences into participants. Considering all these

some particularities and differences in relation

factors, we see that the audiovisual field has

to film and other linear audiovisual narratives.

begun expanding toward the design of experience.

This also applies to the creation of the content. In this article, we will address some aspects of virtual reality’s creative process: How can

CHOREOGRAPHY OF ATTENTION

one think of and develop an immersive experience which brings the participant’s body within the

In linear narratives, actions are inscribed within a

audiovisual content? How can one construct a

frame defined by the director. In narratives-of-ex-

narrative in which essential elements of the film

perience, the framing still exists, but as a sphere,

language (such as framing) are transformed? In

which allows the director to have a more advanced

this text, we aim to propose some initial clues

version of their traditional role. The director

for a language in construction.

creates spatial narratives and generates something larger than a limited frame: they construct a 3D space which contains a narrative universe with

NARRATIVE’S EVOLUTION TOWARD

special characteristics. Among these characteristics

THE DESIGN OF EXPERIENCES

that make VR a unique narrative model, there arises the concept of “choreography of attention.”

Since the invention of film and during the explo-

In VR experiences, one cannot guarantee that

sion of radio, theater, and massive televisions,

the participant or visitor observes exactly what


the director wants. It is not the objective of

hyper- and hypo-stereoscopic processes.” These tech-

this type of technology-technique to monopolize

niques allow “the participant to feel like a giant,

the participant’s attention, but there are var-

only to then feel tiny in the midst of unbelievable

ious manners of projecting paths which will be

acrobatic scenes. To further increase the immer-

created based on the participant’s attention.

sion, the company’s creative teams redesigned the

Spatial narratives can be created in var-

artistic performance to create something completely

ious ways: as a choreography which works with

new.” In Dreams of “O”6, for the virtual reality

nodal points of emotion distributed throughout

experience to accompany the aquatic movement of

the 3D space, or with a detailed art direction

the choreography, Felix & Paul Studios developed a

which directs the movement of attention in order

high-quality VR camera adapted for use underwater.

to propose meanings. Movement, color, light and

Tales of Wedding Rings7, an immersive Manga

shadow, audio design, and the dialogue itself

experience produced by Square Enix, and also explores

can act as hooks which lead the participant to

different narrative techniques which can contribute

possible routes in the multiverse of stories.

to the “choreography of attention.” The combina-

Attention can be directed like a choreog-

tion of the traditional 2D Manga format with 360

raphy from the design phase: one can work with

image and sound allows for the passage from a 2D

models in different scales or actors who move in

framing scheme to an immersive one. In this way,

space. It is also possible to measure attention

the choreography of attention is constructed in a

through heat maps in a prototype which works

back-and-forth between 2D and 3D, between framing

as a demo. To avoid the force of the immersive

the scene and presence in the virtual space. This

experience becoming oppressive, it is neces-

technique also allows us to have the feeling of

sary to understand and balance the quantity of

entering the fictional Manga world, so that we

sensory information that the participant will

can enter the frame and find ourselves surrounded

receive in order to trace the story’s possible

by fictitious characters who are experiencing the

paths. Some of the VR works which participate

story around us.

in The BUG Exhibition illustrate how the concept of “choreography of attention” works in these kinds of narrative.

SPECTATOR. PARTICIPANT. PLAYER. VISITOR.

The BUG Exhibition features two works which are the result of the collaboration

Since stories began to expand, surpassing tra-

between Felix & Paul Studios and Cirque du

ditional linear platforms and involving digital

Soleil, both based in Montreal (Canada).

devices, the role of the audience has changed and

Through this collaboration, they explored

evolved, not just in terms of marketing, but also

various techniques which can be applied to

in terms of narrative. Throughout this process,

the “choreography of attention.”

the group referred to as the audience has begun

Through the Masks of LUZIA , based on one

to enter the narrative with their full body and

of the Cirque du Soleil shows, is “considered the

retake, in a hybrid form, other roles. From spec-

first virtual reality experience made through

tator to participant, the audience has gained a

5 Site: www.oculus.com/experiences/gear-vr/1360461600675039/.

6  www.oculus.com/experiences/gear-vr/1085637668212272/. See page 127.

See page 127.

7  http://www.jp.square-enix.com/mangainvr/. See page 133.

5

THE VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCE FROM THE...  ·  JULIA SALLES AND MARÍA LAURA RUGGIERO   ·  68-76

71


new perspective: it has become a visitor in

moment we enter the virtual and observe ourselves

created or captured worlds.

with a body, we hold existence in that story world.

What is it like to enter storytelling with

We are alive in a virtual space. The role given to

our whole bodies? On one hand, these experience

the participant in a narrative combines the sensation

occur in both virtual reality and augmented

of “presence” with the possibility of changing the

reality, as well as in open experiences more

course of the plot. Being the protagonist of a story

similar to unconventional theaters, or theaters

is not the same as being an accomplice or a witness.

without a main stage, and on the other hand,

Our interpretation of the story, the emotional

experiences mediated by technology involve a

impact, and our involvement change in line with the

greater level of control in their design.

role which is given to us in the narrative. There

The narrative design, which involves

are some story worlds

which are more emotionally

designing the role of participant-human-visitor

charged, and in these cases it is preferable to

in the story’s universe ,has 3 different stages:

project these experiences in a way so that the par-

the transition to the virtual world, the virtual

ticipant experiences them in a disembodied manner.

experience itself, and the aftermath.

If the participant is some kind of ghost who sees

In the first phase, a process of pseudo-de-

everything, this can, in some cases, distance them

materialization is designed: the participant,

from the conflict and emotionally protect them from

for a short period of time, stops existing solely

a highly-charged situation. There are other story

in physical reality while preparing for their

worlds

transition to an alternate world. This transition

linked with the user-visitor’s capacity for action

is a fundamental part of the total experience

and interaction

design and is key to immersion.

where the perspective will be intimately

Step to the Line8, by Ricardo Laganaro, pre-

How can you connect the physical world

sented in The BUG Exhibition, is an immersive expe-

(the space where the experience occurs) to the

rience into maximum security prisons in California,

virtual world? Is this universe experienced

USA, which uses different narrative techniques to

while sitting, standing, or walking? How does the

construct the role of the participant. In Step to the

sensory nature of the physical world penetrate

Line, the narrative point of view alternates between

the virtual world?

modes of a greater sensation of physical presence and

The first seconds of the experience are

modes of disembodied observation. Ricardo Laganaro

dedicated purely to physical adjustment: Do I feel

explores different techniques in order to provoke,

comfortable in the new space and do I understand

first through the participant’s feeling of being a

the rules of the created world? Who am I? What

witness to the reality of the American prison system,

will happen to me? What can I do? Do I have feet

then by putting the perspective of the prisoners in

and hands? Do I have a body?

the foreground. This virtual reality experience is

Making the transition to the virtual world,

“part of the VR for Good program, which connected ten

certain questions about the role of the partic-

rising filmmakers with nonprofit organizations to

ipant in the narrative and the creation of the

create provocative projects about social issues.9 “

sensation of “presence” enter the scene. How will I know who I am as a visitor? Will it be through a physical reference or a clue in the story? The

8  http://www.oculus.com/vr-for-good/programs/step-to-the-line. See page 126. 9  https://www.oculus.com/vr-for-good/


The phase which comes after the experience

Stories, in any platform, have the possibility to

in virtual space is important for integrating

change the world, because narratives in general

the experience as a whole. It is the end, or the

awaken an empathic process.

transition to other platforms. Depending on the

Thinking of a technological platform, like

content and the sensory nature of the experi-

virtual reality, as a kind of plugin that allows us

ence, the way we leave the story is completely

to feel like others, reduces all human processes to a

different in every case: leaving the experience

mere technological activation. If the story we tell

of a war documentary is not the same as getting

does not possess a careful and immersive design,

off a rollercoaster ride. It is important to

skillful emotional development, and a detailed

keep in mind that, during this experience, the

narrative process, we will generate experiences

visitor is purely

which can be equated to “situation tourism.”

emotional, reflection is not

possible during the minutes of virtual reality

Virtual journeys can lead us to various

existence, but this time for reflection does

events and emotions, but the way we get there

arrive at the end. The transition back from the

makes the difference between “poverty porn” and

virtual to the physical world should generate

a deep, impactful experience. The term “poverty

a space which is adequate for reflection or for

porn” was introduced for the first time in the

a new action.

1980s and suggests the use of media, especially film and photos, exploiting situations of poverty or injustice to increase donations to a cause or

HUMAN-MADE EMPATHY, EMOTIONS, AND

introduce specific difficult social situations to

DESIGN: THE EMPATHY PLUGIN?

a privileged audience. VR and this vague notion of an empathic and immersive technology has become

Since the beginning of the last VR wave, the

fertile ground for a new wave of “poverty porn.”

concept of “empathy” was launched as a significant

It is important to remember that every story

component. The idea of the “Empathy Machine”

and storyteller, when effective in their mission,

from Chris Milk’s TED talk The Birth of Virtual

activates empathy, and that this process is not

Reality as an Art Form”, in 2015, created fertile

only related to the technology involved. Studies

soil for an entertainment industry famished for

in neuroscience (Stephens, Silbert, & Hasson,

engagement and attention.

2010) show that our brains synchronize the sto-

“[Virtual reality] connects humans to other

ryteller’s emotions with those of the audience

humans in a profound way I’ve never before seen

who’s listening or watching. The same parts of

in any other form of media, and it can change

our brain activate when we feel together with

people’s perception of each other (...) That is

others, like a bridge which connects us through

why I think virtual reality has the potential

the story. So this empathy machine already exists,

to actually change the world10.”

it is what has driven humanity for years, since

Although factual elements exist to equate

the first storytellers appeared on our planet,

VR with the empathic process, thinking of VR as

the empathy machine is the story being told or

an empathy machine is complicated and inexact.

experienced. But is VR improving this, making it evolve, or is it simply another means of expe-

10  https://www.ted.com/talks/

riencing stories?

chris_milk_the_birth_of_virtual_reality_as_an_art_form

THE VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCE FROM THE...  ·  JULIA SALLES AND MARÍA LAURA RUGGIERO   ·  68-76

73


Virtual reality and our screen-mediated

When I create a virtual reality experience

world , where digital narratives protect us

in which the participant is thrown into a con-

from being vulnerable, give us a safe way to

flict zone, and experiences the pain of others,

participate in individual or collective action,

am I awakening empathy? Or provoking sympathy?

without truly living through it and with a

Does a meme make me funny? Does Photoshop make

well-defined emergency exit.

me handsome? Can I travel to the inner depths of

The wonders of the digital world allow us to

pain while protected by digital armor?

be one-click activists, defending painful causes

Understanding that we are seeing the birth of

from our leather couches, safe from cruelty. This

a new language is key to asking ourselves how we

allows us to connect with hundreds of people

should treat empathy within the design process. To be

in a day without really having connected with

more precise: we are at the dawn of a new technology

any of them. It also allows us to say things we

which has still not created its own language. And

would never say in person. We already experience

language is important. Language opens and destroys

virtual realities every time we enter the social

barriers of the possible or imaginable. Language

networks, whether or not we are equipped with

allows us to give name to our dreams and fears and

Google’s virtual reality headsets.

through this process, construct what is possible.

Once more, the problem is not in the tech-

The creation of this language is the key

nology, but rather in how much the participants,

process that should not be linked solely to the

creators, and citizens of a digital world ded-

creators of the tool. We do not want the inven-

icate themselves to understanding the current

tors of the printing press to be the only ones

reality, having to now deal with a virtual, real

who can publish books, do we?

and augmented, shared world. To be a citizen of

Participating in the process where emerging

thousands of places at the same time is not easy.

languages and narratives are created should be a

The use of virtual reality tools for

diverse dialogue from the beginning, considering

a new digital information society is still

the origin, genre, access to the technology, and

questionable. In an experience, I can be the

creative visions. If this diversity is lacking in

center of a conflict, but if I am looking at

the proposal of the audiovisual language, it will

it from the outside (disconnection) I cannot

lack truth, and will become a monopolized language,

act, I remain an external voyeur, floating

or a dead one. And the same will happen if it lacks

among the pain of others.

emotion or if the narrative is driven by sympathy.

Synthetic realities can steal the option

Citing Brené Brown’s work (The Power of Vulnerability,

of being truly vulnerable away from us,

XX), presented during a TED talk: “Empathy fuels

because they create a strange kind of com-

connection. Sympathy drives disconnection11.”

promise. But is this a problem related to

The current exploration of the VR language will

technology? No. Narrative is missing from

sooner or later lead to the democratization of the tech-

this equation. Do we need to construct more

nology, but also to the democratization of an open language

empathy machines or build ourselves up as

which will begin to mix with our lives and with our pre-

better storytellers? Can I be empathetic in

ferred means of entertainment, information, and pleasure.

a virtual world if I am not empathetic in the real world?

11  https://www.ted.com/talks/ brene_brown_on_vulnerability?language=pt-br


DESIGN DRIVEN BY HUMANS AND EMOTIONS

separating sensory and narrative elements, we will get to various elements which will help us construct

Creations in transmedia, virtual realities,

and reconstruct emotions. When we are happy, we

and interactive experiences have the peculiar

feel everything in a different rhythm than when we

power to add different layers of complexity

are afraid. Perceptions vary in color, tonality,

and new abilities for the creative processes of

the perception of geometry can be friendlier or

audiovisual narrative.

more intimidating. The detailed account of a lived

These kinds of creations are approached

experience helps to connect all the elements which

through a design process which has the par-

are part of that experience. This can contribute

ticipant-human in mind during the creation

to us being able to later analyze and replicate

of the narrative and the visual journey they

these elements in the virtual reality experience.

will experience.

The physical reality, dreams, and memories are

This narrative process is also a process of sensory design to create, balance, and gen-

crucial to the process of designing other alternative realities.

erate stories (plot) and emotions in a virtual

Understanding the art and the craft of a media,

atmosphere. A form of entering into this design

which includes the vast number of elements incor-

process could be through reverse engineering,

porated by the hybrid audiovisual and experiential

creating an experience through nodal points

language, requires patience and the will to explore.

which focus on different emotions.

This exploration requires that we enter a new terrain

Example: When leaving the VR experience,

that is beginning to arise in modern society: the

what is the feeling I want the participant to

transition from storytelling to story-experiencing.

bring back to physical reality with them? Was it

On this journey exploring the connections between

a linear trajectory to where the participant felt

content, technological platforms and interaction,

certain emotions or was it a journey which took

we need creators to not only recreate what we expe-

the participant through different emotional states

rience as reality, but to take advantage of the

(curiosity-tension-fear-terror, for example)?

vast possibilities which open up as one interferes

How do we construct fear, sadness, happi-

in this universe, with a powerful artistic vision.

ness, or ecstasy? In the same way that immer-

The challenge will be in identifying an experience

sion and empathy are not automatic processes

which is worth recreating, and then bringing it

driven by technology, generating emotions is

further, constructing alternative visions of that

also a constructive and human process. Working

meaningful experience, and provoking the infinite

with emotional nodes in an immersive narrative

exploration of the artistic field.

suggests connecting with the physical reality before connecting with the virtual one. How do we remember human experiences that were truly memorable? What did we feel that night we were so afraid to be alone in the woods? What did you feel when you were so in love with life that you could not stop smiling? In remembering, if we try to scrutinize our experiences,

REFERENCES

BROWN, Brené. (2010). The power of vulnerability. TED Conference . https://www.ted.com/talks/ brene_brown_on_vulnerability?language=pt-br BURDEA, G., & COIFFET, P. (2003). Virtual Reality Technology. Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 12(6), p. 663-664. doi:10.1162/105474603322955950 HOPKINS, M. (Oct. 18, 2017). Pioneering Virtual Reality and

THE VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCE FROM THE...  ·  JULIA SALLES AND MARÍA LAURA RUGGIERO   ·  68-76

75


New Video Technologies in Journalism. New York Times, p. B4. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/18/technology/ personaltech/virtual-reality-video.html MILK, C. (Producer). (2015). The Birth of Virtual Reality as an art form. TED conference. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cJg_tPB0Nu0 STEPHENS, G. J., SILBERT, L. J., & HASSON, U. (2010). Speaker–listener neural coupling underlies successful communication. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201008662. doi:10.1073/pnas.1008662107. https://www.pnas.org/content/107/32/14425


In the vibrant heart of Montreal lies the famous

Felix & Paulo Studios, two steps from the Phi Centre, the city’s spot for artistic experimentation. The proximity is not only geographic: the two institutions maintain strong relations, and it is not uncommon for the Phi Centre to

IMERSIVES NARRATIVES

exhibit the studio’s latest projects. In March 2016, the Phi Centre proposed a “virtual reality garden,” where the public was invited to

FÉLIX & PAUL STUDIOS: A GUIDED TOUR OF THE PRESTIGIOUS VIRTUAL REALITY STUDIO1

immerse themselves in four VR works, with a new perspective on the 20th century’s great questions. Included among these works were Inside impact:

East Africa with President Clinton3, and Nomads: Maasai4, by Félix Lajeunesse and Paul Raphaël, founders of the studio. Thus, we wished to know more about these two personalities. The studio’s logo represents them:

BY FANNY BELVISI2

one of them on top of a moose and the other on a camel. Although the camel inspires laughter, it also translates the partners’ desire to expand from the North to the South. In fact, this little startup, created in 2013, has not stopped growing, and continues to embrace increasingly ambitious projects. It is well known that camels are not common among the vast fauna of America’s west coast, but even so, Felix & Paul Studios opened a branch in Los Angeles.

1  Interview conducted in March 2016. Originally published in the book Au-delà du webdoc: Les nouveaux territoires de la création documentaire (Le Blog documentaire éditions, June 2018, Paris). 2  Fanny Belvisi holds a degree in Literature and Art History, worked in the field of contemporary art and moved to the film universe, having studied documentaries at the Ateliers Varan in 2013. Since 2017 she has produced documentaries for several television channels. She has collaborated with Le Blog Documentaire since 2015.

“Ultimately, for Félix, Paul, and Stéphane (the last founding member of the startup), the idea is to be a TRUE studio for VR cinema. Technology advances very quickly. There is no reason whatsoever that it cannot go much farther and that we cannot become a major VR studio. Our headquarters is in Montreal, but we had to open another branch, because there are many opportunities in L.A.,” affirms Cindy, who welcomed me for my visit to the studio on a cold March morning.

3  https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/inside_impact_east_africa 4  https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/maasai BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 77


Cindy is a kind of super assistant for the

After the cookies and tea, it is time to see

three studio founders. Since 2015, she has

the

taken care of the packed schedule, coordinat-

Studios’ reputation is precisely their position

ing their commitments, having them meet with

regarding projects, with a documentary approach

the right people at the right time, filtering

that allows them to dive deep into the heart of

the numerous projects which arrive in their

“real” situations where the spectator lives a

email inboxes, and presenting only those which

nearly “pure” experience.

fit the house philosophy. She also manages a part of the startup’s communications (website, social networks, Instagram). “There’s no time to be bored here. The important thing is that everyone likes what they do. As our quality standards are very high, we need to dedicate a lot of time and also be happy with our work. You have to want to give your best. Everyone is very committed,” she says.

real

works.

What

sustains

Felix

&

Paul

Cindy places the impressive, and to be honest, rather uncomfortable, VR headset over my eyes and a pair of headphones in my ears. The journey begins with one of the studio’s first productions, Strangers with Patrick Watson5, in which the spectator is immersed in the intimacy of the musician’s

studio

rehearsal.

We

continue

our

exploration with Nomads: Herders , a fascinating 6

incursion into the landscapes of Mongolia with an

With a plate of homemade cookies and a cup

impressive scene where the spectator is thrown

of tea warming her hands, she introduced me

into a yurt and becomes surrounded by a family of

to the space where everything is secret. You

Mongolians, eating and engrossed in their tasks.

cannot take photos, for example. The studio is

We have the same sense of vertigo in our tête-à-

divided in two large parts: at the entrance,

tête with Bill Clinton, practically in the flesh,

we find the developers who manage the data

seated at his desk, speaking with us in Inside

(and eventual bugs) they receive, guaranteeing

impact: East Africa with President Clinton. As

their

technology

Felix and Paul Studios has also entered the world

specifically: Samsung Gear VR

of fiction, Cindy shows us the project, Wild -

correct

they use

adaptation

to

the

–, and they are

The Experience7, which was presented at the 2014

developing a VR camera which better responds

Sundance Festival, created in partnership with

to the necessities of future projects.

Fox Searchlight and Fox Innovation Lab, at the

headsets, powered by Oculus

The second part of the space, separated by a

same time of the premiere of the film Wild.

kitchen, is used by the post-production team,

In the end, the sensory experience is convincing,

which manages project production, sound, and

even though the media raises many reflections.

synchronization. In total, 25 people partici-

Virtual

pate in the studio’s productions, not including

of “classic” cinema, and forces us to rethink

10 spots which need will be filled in post-pro-

its grammar and syntax, which are quite confused

duction, which is always more important. “We

in this world. The spectator is truly divided

have grown a lot in very little time, but we

between a here (their body) and a there (their

Reality

alters

the

critical

still need people, because we are planning on growing even more,” announces Cindy.

5  https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/introtovr 6  https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/herders 7  https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/wild

questions


consciousness). If this media is the material-

the director remain the same, or will they begin

ization of Man’s ancient dream – the power of

to assume the function of a theater director, who

omnipresence – what new relation with our body

organizes the scene and the characters and then

will it lead us to?

leaves the scene to give space to the spectacle?

In 1968, Roland Barthes analyzed what he called

There is no one who can respond to these ques-

“the reality effect8” in the sphere of realist

tions with more legitimacy than Félix Lajeunesse.

literature. This “reality effect” on the presence, in the context of literary texts, more specifically the realist novels of the 19th century, addresses descriptive elements which have no functional value. Or rather, which are not useful to the novel’s narrative itself. This “reality effect” clearly arises regarding the descriptive elements of the text which do

YOUR FILMS ARE GENERALLY 8 TO 10 MINUTES LONG. THIS TRANSIENCE IS, IN PART, RELATED TO TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES. BUT IS THIS CHOICE OF SHORT FORMATS ALSO RELATED TO THE FACT THAT YOUR FILMS REQUIRE A STRONG LEVEL OF INTERACTION WITH THE SPECTATOR, ESPECIALLY IN THE DOCUMENTARIES? IS IT A DESIRE TO CONTROL OUR CAPACITY FOR ATTENTION?

not connect as much to action, but validate an immediate and authentic relation with reality.

FÉLIX LAJEUNESSE (FL) - The idea of “presence”

With this reflection in mind, we can ask our-

in virtual reality needs to be shaped according

selves: Does the strength of Virtual Reality

to the story being told, like an instrument.

not also come to justify precisely this “real-

In any case, that is how we work. It is not a

ity effect”? Taking this understanding as a

resource which should be used at full capacity

basis, one can conclude that the narrative of

all the time. We shape it through the story. If

films produced up to now is relatively weak,

we only create very intense moments, tied into

and that the spectator has finally arrived

the narrative, that brings us an experience which

closer to the sensation of watching a descrip-

is too dense. In the films we produce, there are

tion of reality – which is not theirs – rather

moments in which we try to reduce the intensity

than sticking to a story.

of this sensation of presence, to give the spec-

Virtual Reality offers the spectator a potent, aesthetic

experience

which

stimulates

the

senses. However, depriving the audience of a physical distance from the work, does it not also take away, in a certain way, their critical distance that allows one to appreciate

tator time to breathe and catch up. It is like a story where we resort to more wide shots, seeing the scene from afar, to be able to keep a certain distance from the story. After these pauses, the spectator is more capable of returning to the dramatic intensity.

a work and the representation of the reality

In virtual reality, we have this first dimension,

it proposes? Moreover, what representation of

or rather, the intensity of the storytelling. But

reality does Virtual Reality offer? How does

we also have the intensity of the spectator’s

it differ from film? What happens to the con-

presence, which we shape according to the type

cepts of framing and shooting? Will the role of

of experience we intend to provide. In Nomads:

Herders,

we

have

some

shots

with

a

stronger

intensity than others. As soon as the spectator 8  www.persee.fr/doc/comm_0588-8018_1968_num_11_1_1158

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BY FANNY BELVISI  · 77-82

79


arrives at the yurt with the people, there is

of the story and the way in which we acted upon

no proper narration, but this sensation of

the state of the spectator’s spirit. Because this

a very strong connection with those people

media can affect us in a very sensitive manner,

does exist. However, nothing terribly special

we try to do this very cautiously, respecting the

happens. If it were a classic film, this scene

intelligence and sensibility of the spectator.

would be an accessory and ordinary. However, if we think in terms of the evolution of the sensation of presence, that is the protagonist of the experience. The tie with these characters is created in that moment. Normally, I would never have begun with this scene, right at the start of the experience. Gradually, things settle in and the scene is emotionally stronger for being where it is. The spectator needs to be psychologically prepared. We take this strongly in consideration and work with virtual reality from this perspective, as much in fiction projects as in documentaries.

FROM YOUR POINT OF VIEW, ARE VR AND FILM TWO COMPLETELY DISTINCT THINGS? IF VR ALLOWS THE SPECTATOR TO GET CLOSER TO REALITY, IS IT STILL A “REPRESENTATION OF REALITY,” IN YOUR OPINION? AND, IF SO, WHAT ARE ITS MODALITIES AND CHARACTERISTICS? FL- Yes, absolutely, VR is a representation of reality! The only great difference is that there is far less distance between the representation and the spectator. What changes, then, is the relation which is maintained with this representation. The media is made in such a way that it is assimilated to the human sensorial experience

The source material we work with is the state

in an extreme manner: to the way we see things

of the spectator’s spirit. In virtual real-

naturally in reality, how we hear, and how we

ity, we are in their head. From the moment

perceive space.

you insert them into a work, you have their full attention, they cannot escape or disconnect.

The

spectator

is

confronted

with

knowing what is being presented to them. It is a very sensitive media, where it is possible to provide a real impact on the state of the public’s spirit. For me, a low-quality VR work is irritating, because I am inside it and cannot get out. I am deep within something that holds my full perception. I take this very seriously! On the other hand, if it were a classic film, I could diminish my level of attention and think about other things. That is not possible in a virtual reality film. There is a very tight bond created with the spectator. In Herders, we paid plenty of attention to the evolution

VR receives and expresses things in a form very analogous to the human being. It is an immediate, very intimate experience which does not appear to make a great distinction between the consciousness of the spectator and that of the artist who created the film. The very nature of the media is different, so the position of the spectator is as well. But I do not believe that VR, even in its realest form, allows for a confusion. Even when we fully film moments of life, sectors of life are not manipulated, the spectator’s brain continues to be aware that they are immersed in an experience, which can be left at any moment. They do not think that they have been teleported. VR creates a sensation of


immersion within the head of the spectator,

conditions and that it grants veracity to the

but it is not a complete disconnection.

spectator, and is correctly produced. If we were to think “my camera has 360 degrees, I

IN FILM, THE DIRECTOR SELECTS AND FILMS THE REAL ACCORDING TO THE SHOTS CHOSEN. IN VR, THERE IS NO SUCH OPERATION, AS THE SPECTATORS THEMSELVES CHOOSE WHAT THEY WANT - OR DO NOT WANT - TO WATCH IN THE PROPOSED SCENE. HOW DO YOU WORK WITH THIS?

place it in a determined point because that way

FL - This question about framing is a common

On the contrary, we see the camera more anthropo-

question for many people who come from film.

logically, keeping in mind the role and the point

They see VR essentially from the perspective

of view of the spectator within each moment. (What

of the freedom which is given to the spectator.

is the meaning of the spectator’s presence? What

This aspect constitutes a fundamental shift

is the motive behind being in this scene?). It

regarding film, but one which we never think

is not so serious if the spectator doesn not see

about at the time of project production. For

this or that. What is important to understand is

us, this is a concept that does not exist. We

where the spectator should be seated. As soon as

create moments and bring the spectator within

you make that decision, you see the camera as a

them. We work so that the place from which the

character and you end up making choices which are

spectator chooses to watch these moments is not

coherent with the nature of this character.

we have a good point of view when the character enters,” then we are confronted with the problem we just described, because it is a reflection given in terms of points of interest. You think strategically, like a filmmaker.

very important. In all of life’s situations, we have the possibility of looking at another place, of exercising our right to direct our attention where we want, to immerse ourselves

IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT ARE THE AXES WHICH YOU STILL NEED TO DEVELOP? WHAT ARE THE COURSES OF EVOLUTION AND IMPROVEMENT?

where we wish, according to what has come to us, according to what we want to look at. This

FL - Virtual reality is a fragile media. It is

happens within our unconscious. We do not say

very easy to mess it up. But if you really want

to ourselves: “I am making the choice to look

to achieve a skilled form of expression, to be

at this or that...”

capable of affecting people and making the work

We try to create moments in which the spectator is going to feel a state of spirit analogous to that of reality, moments where we do not

persist within them, it is difficult! You have to know the concepts very well and the DNA of your media in order to sound true.

have to control whatever. The spectator is

Over the next few years, what will change regards

free to experience what they want, like in

the duration of the projects. They will extend in

reality. What is important to us is creating

time and approach more complex stories, contain-

conditions that provide the encounter between

ing different aspects. We should also gain more

the spectator and a moment. We need to assure

flexibility and lightness.

that our work as the director, which consists in creating this encounter, is done in good

FÉLIX & PAUL STUDIOS: A GUIDED TOUR OF THE PRESTIGIOUS VIRTUAL REALITY STUDIO -

BY FANNY BELVISI  · 77-82

81


The

challenge

we

have

as

a

studio

and

as

directors is that of diving more and more into fiction. Until now, we have been very prudent.

It

is

important

for

us

to

first

SPECTATOR IS INVITED TO A SCENE, BUT KNOWS PERFECTLY WELL THAT THEY SHOULD NOT BE THERE. WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THIS ASPECT: THE SPECTATOR WHO NAVIGATES BETWEEN PRESENCE AND PASSIVITY?

understand the material with which we work. We are heading towards more ambitious proj-

FL - At this moment, there is a lot of discussion

ects in the area of fiction.

in the industry regarding this problem, especially among people who come from the world of games. According to them, being present is nothing, it is

IF YOU DIVE COMPLETELY INTO FICTION PROJECTS, WILL YOU ABANDON DOCUMENTARIES?

necessary to be able to tinker and interact. It is

FL - We will not abandon documentaries, on the

it is a tendency to dogmatize things: “this should

contrary! What I am about to say is a bit of an

be this way, or it is not VR.” To me, the problem

exaggeration, but I always had the impression

with the fact of feeling like you are moving, is

that the documentary never really found its

that this very quickly reaches the limit! You find

place in film. As though the expression of

yourself in a kind of game that is obviously full of

documentary through film had never found its

rules, which are too evident for being an experience

peak, due to the fact that the film is artifi-

of reality, where, on the contrary, everything is

cially fabricated.

possible. The more freedom we give, the more evident

a discussion which is not based on storytelling, but only on interaction. At the end of the day,

its limitations. This ends up defining rules of what Documentary films try to achieve the real,

you can or cannot do during the experience.

but this is distant and difficult, given that cinema is an artificial media, a pure repre-

On the other hand, I am convinced that the more

sentation like a painting.

the spectator is in contact with VR, the more the feeling of passivity diminishes. They end up

In the end, the documentary that pursues veracity ends up passing through an artificial media. I feel that if documentary cannot achieve its peak in cinema, it is perfectly possibly that this may occur in virtual reality. Directors will finally encounter a way of developing their work where they can fully express themselves.

APPLIED TO THE DOCUMENTARY, VR SOMETIMES PROVIDES THE SPECTATOR WITH A VOYEUR EXPERIENCE. THEY ARE PRESENT IN THE SCENE, AND, AT THE SAME TIME, EXPERIENCE IT PASSIVELY. THE PLEASURE THAT VR PROVIDES ALSO COMES FROM THE FEELING OF TRANSGRESSING THE PROHIBITED: THE

completely integrated with the sensation.


In 2016, they produced France’s first virtual reality science fiction piece: I, Philip3. The film is part of a transmedia device created by

ARTE channel, that revolves around the universe

IMERSIVE NARRATIVES

of Philip K. Dick, along with a linear TV documentary, the Californium videogame, and I, Philip.

Okio-Studio’s next production returned to virtual

OKIO-STUDIO, FRANCE’S PIONEERING VIRTUAL REALITY STUDIO, RESPONSIBLE FOR I, PHILIP AND ALTERATION1

reality fiction with Alteration4. Antoine Cayrol and Pierre Zandrowicz’s activities are not limited to these two works, but they effectively placed both creators at the world’s cutting edge, not too far from the Quebec-based Canadians Felix & Paul. It all began with the presentation of the film

Grand Huit (roller coaster in French). It caused cold sweats, vertigo and panic. Nothing out of the ordinary when related to roller coasters… if it were not for the fact that Antoine Cayrol and

BY XAVIER DE LA VEGA2

Pierre

Zandrowicz,

producer

and

creative

director of FatCat Films respectively, had not planned on a visit to the Foire du Trône (an amusement park in Paris) that evening. They had met up with other producer friends and with a DK headset - the first version of the Oculus Rift - that was in the back of the room. One could experience a virtual descent down a roller coaster with a poor-quality image. However, as soon as they had stepped out of the room to smoke and chat about their experience, both were taken

1  Article produced in 2016 and updated by the author in 2018. Originally published in the book Au-delà du webdoc: Les nouveaux territoires de la création documentaire (Le Blog Documentaire Éditions, June 2018, Paris). 2  Xavier de la Vega is an interactive storyteller and producer. With a background in journalism, he specialized in interactive designer at École de L’image des Gobelins. He wrote and produced the newsgame BeMySavior (LeVentSeLève, OBS, 2015). He is currently the VR producer at Picseyes Films, a film production company based in Paris.

up by the same flash of insight. They spoke at the same time: “What if we made a movie?” Two and a half years later, the movie was ready,

I,

Philip,

one

of

the

first

virtual

reality

short films that French TV channel ARTE included in its programming, about the American Sci-Fi writer Philip K. Dick. It is, without a doubt, the first great French virtual reality project. In the meantime, the two thirty-somethings

3  http://www.okio-studio.com/okio-project4-I-philip.html. See page 129. 4  http://www.okio-studio.com/okio-project1-alteration.html. See page 132.

BUG - INTERACTIVE AND IMMERSIVE NARRATIVES ANDRÉ PAZ AND SANDRA GAUDENZI/EDITORS ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0 RIO DE JANEIRO  ·  224 PAGES / PUBLISHER: AUTOMATICA CO-PUBLISHING: LETRA E IMAGEM  ·  BUG404.NET 83


created Okio-Studio, a virtual reality pro-

convinced of their capabilities and immediately

duction company that soon became renowned in

asked them if they had virtual reality projects.

the

A project on Philip K. Dick? What a coincidence!

field.

“We

spent

a

year

experimenting direction,”

ARTE has just created a transmedia device pre-

said Antoine. “We manufactured our cameras.

cisely on the same author. “I had not even final-

We filmed on skis, skates, in cars, on the

ized the script when Antoine arrived with the news

roller coaster, to understand how it worked,

that ARTE was interested in reading it,” said

what worked and what did not. From that point

Pierre. A few weeks of work later, the channel

on, we started to get invitations. We had

announced: “Let’s go to the bank!” They sponsored

become virtual reality specialists.”

the editing of the short film, its budget was a

with

virtual

reality

in

every

In fact, Okio saw its productions multiply quickly. I, Philip and also Alteration, among

trifling 500,000 euros. That is what we call being in the right place at the right time.

a number of other films the studio created were

Those responsible for the ARTE web center were

inserted in the “drama” category. There was

able to finance the first stage of the project’s

also the Okio-Report that gave rise to a vari-

demo, to submit the production to approval, and

ety of 360 reports for Le Parisien and France

verify if it would be possible to carry out the

Ô. Finally, there was the “brand” sector: Okio

biggest challenge the film posed – shooting it

produced advertisements in virtual reality for

entirely with the camera and through a subjective

Jean-Paul Gautier, for the gas company Engie,

point of view. They took the risk, since at the

for Téléthon… advertising became, in fact, the

time the only other feature length film to use the

studio’s main activity. That was how Antoine

same technique had been Lady in the Lake (1947),

Cayrol and Pierre Zandrowicz left Okio at the

whose claim to fame was based on curiosity, rather

end of 2017, and created Atlas V along with

than effectively marking the history of film.

Arnaud Colinart.

Marianne Lévy-Leblond and Lili Blumers, of the

I, Philip was born practically by chance. Pierre Zandrowicz had, during a long time, the film project in a drawer. “We had tried to make a documentary, a feature film, a short film, but the story was complex and the sponsors fell short. We realized that the solution was to tell the story with a virtual reality headset, creating in the spectator a feeling of empathy for this robot head,” he said. I, Philip is a film told from the subjective point of view, in which the spectator gets into the head of a robot and recreates the spirit of Philip K. Dick. As soon as Antoine took his first demos of virtual reality tryouts to ARTE’s web center, Gilles Freissinier, head of the center, was

ARTE web, were concerned that the camera-gaze of the characters, present in so many scenes of the movie, might not work. “We worked for a month and a half on the demo and then took it to a screening,” said Pierre. “They saw the film only once – it was incredibly frustrating – and said: “Okay, cool!” We asked them if they would want to see it another time. They told us: “No, no, it’s fine!” And that is how our short-film was born, in which, the moment the spectator puts on their virtual

reality

headset,

they

find

themselves

inside the head of a robot, a kind of digital creature amid humans. To film I, Philip it was necessary to create a

recording

device

from

scratch.

“We

brought


together a few techniques in order to cre-

one first and then the other… the second actor

ate a real cinematic effect, we did not want

had no right to interact, he could not even move,

the GoPro effect (six GoPro cameras mounted

since it would ruin the sound.” In other words,

together are standard for 360 journalism). What

a 360 film forced us to reinvent the good old

is more, we wanted to film with some relief”,

reverse shot. “Filming was very challenging for

said Pierre. With that goal in mind, he mounted

the actors,” said Antoine. “But then Pierre could

two Red cameras (super high definition digital

direct the actors, the director lit the scene.”

cameras) to film in 3D. The microphones were

In sum, it was about making movies.

installed on top of the cameras, which forced them to suppress the fans and attach a long tube to the back of the equipment to guarantee the necessary ventilation. “It was a very strange camera...” “Where did our desire to film in relief come from? Well, from the desire to recreate reality! If you wear a virtual reality headset and watch a 360 video, it is like looking through a bubble. Reality is in relief,” said Antoine.

But what happens to film in a 360 movie? We know that its grammar is turned inside out. To start, there is no “outside the scene,” since the camera captures the scene from every angle. “The ‘outside the scene’ in virtual reality, is the room next door. There is a scene in I, Phillip in which we hear the conversation of two characters that we do not see. They are in a different room, down the hallway,” said Pierre. Thus, for the spectator, the frame is built through exclusion,

The two partners and producers belong to an

since what they see is always a fraction of a 360º

elite international group of virtual reality

image. This means that the director needs action

&

happening in a number of places within the frame.

Paul, and American Chris Milk (Within), that

“Virtual reality means establishing a hierarchy

manufacture their own filming devices to bring

in the various elements of a scene. First we have

an old dream to life: to recreate reality in

the fundamental elements, that the spectator can-

the truest possible manner. “If we stick to

not miss so they can understand the story. A good

our level of expectations, we will continue

part of the narrative in virtual reality consists

to manufacture cameras. Until now, what we did

in guiding the spectator’s eye, through sound,

was to make the best camera possible for that

light, image movements, so that they see what can

film. The next one will have nothing to do with

be seen and when it can be seen. And there are

the camera used in I, Philip”.

other elements, placed here and there, that make

hackers,

along

with

the

Canadians

Felix

Pierre quickly gave up on filming in 360, which

the story richer,” said Antoine.

implied leaving the scene once the camera was

And what about the frame, this crucial decisions

activated. This on the other hand, led to risky

for

challenges. “Since we wanted perfect stitch-

augments, adds complexity, provides rhythm to

a

filmmaker,

that

excludes,

accentuates,

ing, (stitching is to conjoin various points

action; has not the frame been equally abolished?

of view so as to reconstruct a 360 image)

We can imagine the commotion among the guardians

we would film in a series of stages. More

of the seventh art, ready to pounce: no frame,

concretely, when two actors had a dialogue,

can we still talk about film? “This story of say-

I would not film them together. I would film

ing there is no frame, because the camera films

OKIO-STUDIO, FRANCE’S PIONEERING VIRTUAL REALITY STUDIO... - BY XAVIER DE LA VEGA  · 83-86

85


everything…”, contested Pierre. “In 360º people

This feeling of “presence” became a mantra for the

do not film everything. It is the positioning

virtual reality community. The moment Pierre saw

of the camera that will induce, or not, the

(with a headset) the work The Battle for Northern

feeling of being in someone else’s place. The

Syria, produced by Okio-report for Le Parisien

composition of the frame is still a decisive

in partnership with the Smart press agency based

choice. We filmed a scene at the Etretat beach

in Syria, he had for the first time in his life

(in Normandy). We could have placed the camera

the feeling of omnipresence. “Suddenly Syria was

in a thousand different places. We chose one

here, and I was there.”

in which the rocks were filmed in relief, and this added to the narrative. Virtual reality scares directors because they fear that their role may disappear, but in fact, in virtual reality there are an infinite number of decisions to be made.”

With

the

ongoing

experimentation

that

contem-

plates the entire potential of virtual reality, is there still a place for the production of classical digital images –

that is, if we dare use

the term ‘classic’ for formats from 10 years ago? For Antoine, the answer is absolutely affirma-

Virtual reality is a form of film with inherent

tive: “Virtual reality will certainly have great

interactivity, activated by the movements of

importance in the future - Goldman Sachs predicts

the head (and body, depending on the device

it will have a trajectory comparable to that of

used).

the

television. But it will continue to coexist with

spectator will react to a certain image? “Our

But

how

can

one

anticipate

how

web and audiovisual content. There is nothing

main role is to guide the spectator’s gaze.

that says that the spectator will have a desire

But there is also what I would call a passive

to be permanently immersed in virtual reality.

interactivity: the spectator activates a few

They will prefer to alternate between immersive

elements inside the image. A certain character

content and a 2D soccer match with alternating

will only appear if the spectator looks in

planes; or they will be moving from an internet

that direction, but also will not appear if the

tab with a documentary and specific sequences of

spectator does not look in the right direction.

virtual reality. The future lies within media

This interactivity is what I think is more

complementation.”

interesting than in web documentaries, where the choices are clear (go left or right?). In this case, the spectator has no awareness of what he or she lost,” said Pierre. It is possible that I, Philip has benefitted from such interaction by redirecting the movements of the spectator to the heart of the action. The ability to move one’s head to all sides, at specific points in time, may interfere with the spectator’s identification with the robot, and thus their presence in the action.




CAPÍTULO 4 | CHAPTER 4

MOSTRA BUG - CATÁLOGO THE BUG EXHIBITION – CATALOG

BUG - NARRATIVAS INTERATIVAS E IMERSIVAS  ·  ANDRÉ PAZ E SANDRA GAUDENZI/ORG ISBN 978-85-64919-30-3 / 978-85-64919-31-0  ·  RIO DE JENRIO  ·  224 PÁGINAS  EDITORA: AUTOMATICA  · COEDIÇÃO: LETRA E IMAGEM / OI FUTURO  ·  BUG404.NET

105


Highrise: Out My Window

2010

Highrise: Out My Window fala da vida urbana por meio de pessoas que habitam arranha-céus e observam o mundo de suas janelas. São 49 histórias vindas de 13 cidades ao redor do planeta. O documentário mostra recortes diverso`s de vidas imersas em gigantescas torres residenciais de concreto. É um dos primeiros documentários interativos com visualização em 360o do mundo e foi a primeira iniciativa do premiado projeto multiplataforma e colaborativo Highrise, ainda em desenvolvimento, sempre com foco na experiência humana em grandes edifícios.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA (NFB) •

outmywindow.nfb.ca

Highrise: Out My Window discusses urban life through the stories of people who inhabit skyscrapers and observe the world through their windows. There are 49 stories from 13 cities around the planet. The documentary shows various slices of life as immersed in gigantic, concrete-slab towers. It is one of the world’s first, interactive 360o documentaries and was the first initiative from the award-winning, multiplatform and collaborative project, Highrise, still in development, and always with a focus on the human experience in large buildings.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: KATERINA CIZEK

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • CANADÁ/CANADA

INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES

NARRATIVAS INTERATIVAS


NARRATIVAS INTERATIVAS  |  INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES · 106-119

107

Hollow

2013

2015

Network Effect explora o efeito psicológico do uso da internet na humanidade. O projeto se baseia nos infinitos cruzamentos de informações que o usuário pode gerar a partir de um gigantesco banco de dados composto por 10 mil videoclipes, 10 mil frases faladas, notícias, tweets, gráficos, listas e milhões de dados postados por indivíduos na web. Só há uma questão: a janela de visualização é limitada a cerca de sete minutos (cálculo feito a partir da expectativa de vida média no país de onde a página é acessada), induzindo o usuário a um estado de ansiedade, de impossibilidade de conclusão. Uma provocação a respeito da ilusão de conhecimento e completude gerada pela internet.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: JONATHAN HARRIS E GREG HOCHMUTH • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: JONATHAN HARRIS E GREG HOCHMUTH

networkeffect.io

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • EUA/USA

Network Effect

Hollow é um documentário interativo que investiga o declínio populacional da América rural por meio da história dos moradores do condado de McDowell, na Virgínia Ocidental. Em 2013, a população era composta por 22 mil moradores, bem abaixo dos 100 mil durante o auge industrial vivido em meados do século XX. O motivo principal seria a saída de jovens e adultos em busca de melhores oportunidades de emprego em cidades maiores, um fenômeno ainda em curso.

Network Effect explores the psychological effects of internet use on humanity. The project is based on the infinite cross sections of information which the user can generate through a gigantic database composed of 10 thousand video clips, 10 thousand spoken phrases, news stories, tweets, graphics, lists, and millions of data posted by individuals on the web. There is only one issue: the viewing window is limited to around seven minutes (a calculation based on the average life expectancy in the country from which the page is accessed), inducing in the user a state of anxiety, frustrating any attempt at conclusion. A provocation related to the illusion of knowledge and completeness generated by the internet.

Hollow is an interactive documentary which investigates rural America’s population decline through the story of the residents of McDowell country, West Virginia. In 2013, the population consisted of 22 thousand residents, well below the 100 thousand experienced during the industrial boom in the 20th century. The main motive for youths and adults to leave was the search of better job opportunities in bigger cities, a phenomenon which continues today.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: REQUISITE MEDIA, LLC • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ELAINE MCMILLION SHELDON

hollowdocumentary.com

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • EUA/USA


Ilha Grande: Cada Praia, uma Ilha; Cada Ilha, uma História 2015

2017

The web documentary, Ilha Grande: Cada Praia, uma Ilha; Cada Ilha, uma História, gathers stories about characters and curiosities from nine beaches of Ilha Grande, an island paradise located in southern Rio de Janeiro state. It also offers suggestions of local guides, housing, restaurants, and transportation services. The webdoc is part of a development project aiming to promote social technology which supports community-based tourism initiatives in environmentally protected areas.

A Colônia de Itapuã, localizada no município gaúcho de Viamão, foi um dos 33 “vilarejos-hospital” construídos na década de 1940 pelo então presidente Getúlio Vargas para isolar pessoas com hanseníase. A colônia chegou a abrigar 1.454 pessoas, muitas delas abandonadas por suas famílias. Hoje, apenas 35 moradores permanecem lá, todos com mais de 60 anos. A Cidade Inventada reúne vasto material sobre o passado e o presente do lugar, como vídeos, mapas, gravações em fita cassete feitas pelos moradores e um cinejornal produzido na época da inauguração da colônia. O objetivo é evitar que Itapuã caia no esquecimento.

Itapuã, located in the municipality of Viamão in Rio Grande do Sul, was one of the 33 “hospital villages” constructed in the 1940s by then-president Getúlio Vargas to quarantine people with Hansen’s Disease. The colony was home to 1,454 people, many of whom were abandoned by their families. Today, only 35 residents remain, all more than 60 years old. The Invented Village gathers a vast array of material on the village’s past and present, including videos, maps, cassette tape recordings made by residents, and a newsreel produced for the colony’s inauguration. The objective is to keep Itapuã from falling into the abyss of the forgotten.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: TEMPO PORTO ALEGRE • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: LILIANA SULZBACH

acidadeinventada.com.br

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL

A Cidade Inventada

O webdocumentário Ilha Grande: Cada Praia, uma Ilha; Cada Ilha, uma História reúne histórias de personagens e curiosidades sobre nove praias deste que é considerado um paraíso no sul do estado do Rio de Janeiro. Também traz sugestões de guias locais, hospedagens, restaurantes e serviços de transporte. O webdoc faz parte de um projeto de desenvolvimento e difusão de uma tecnologia social voltada para apoiar iniciativas de turismo de base comunitária no entorno de áreas protegidas.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: LABORATÓRIO DE TECNOLOGIA E DESENVOLVIMENTO SOCIAL (LTDS) DA UFRJ • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ANDRÉ PAZ

ilhagrandewebdoc.website

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL


NARRATIVAS INTERATIVAS  |  INTERACTIVE NARRATIVES · 106-119

109

2011

2015

Through self-representation, three photographers, residents of the Maré favela (AF Rodrigues, Jaqueline Felix, and Ratão Diniz) provide their perspectives in discussing the stereotypes of Rio de Janeiro favelas. These youths narrate their lives amidst a backdrop of contradiction: they portray the happiness of everyday life and the difficulties faced by those who live in often precarious urban conditions. It addresses a Rio distant from the traditional postcard image. Due to this, however, it is far more real and human.

The Quipu Project é um projeto transmídia, interativo e colaborativo sobre as mais de 300 mil pessoas afetadas pelo programa de esterilização forçada que ocorreu no Peru nos anos 1990. A premissa fundamental é divulgar os testemunhos de quem sofreu e continua sofrendo as consequências dessa violação, em termos físicos e psicológicos, e buscar maneiras de apoiá-los tanto com reconhecimento quanto reparação dos danos.

The Quipu Project is a transmedia, interactive, and collaborative project about the more than 300 thousand people affected by the forced sterilization project which occurred in Peru in the 1990s. The fundamental premise is to disseminate the testimonies of those who suffered and continue to suffer the consequences of this violation, both physical and psychological, and search for ways to support them through recognition and reparation.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: CHAKA STUDIO • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: MARIA COURT E ROSEMARIE LERNER

interactive.quipu-project.com

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • INGLATERRA/ENGLAND

The Quipu Project

Por meio da autorrepresentação, três fotógrafos moradores do Complexo da Maré (AF Rodrigues, Jaqueline Felix e Ratão Diniz) trazem seus olhares e colocam em discussão os estereótipos criados sobre as favelas cariocas. Esses jovens se ocupam em narrar suas vidas num cenário de contrastes: retratam as alegrias do dia a dia e as dificuldades de quem convive com condições urbanas muitas vezes precárias. Trata-se de um Rio de Janeiro longe das imagens dos cartões-postais tradicionais. Mas, por isso mesmo, muito mais real e humano.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: CROSS CONTENT • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: MARCELO BAUER

riodejaneiroautorretrato.com.br

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL

Rio de Janeiro: Autorretrato


Prison Valley 2010

2015

Prison Valley is an interactive road movie which puts the user in the place of a journalist investigating the United States prison industry. The story takes place at the heart of the American prison sector: Fremont County, Colorado, the home of 36 thousand people and 13 prisons. One of these is called ADX Supermax, the only maximum security prison on American territory.

Mujeres en Venta aborda as etapas do crime de tráfico de mulheres na Argentina, desde a captura e maneiras de enganá-las até as rotas que são percorridas, a exploração sexual e o resgate. Os relatos corajosos das vítimas que conseguiram escapar do horror se cruzam com os dados produzidos por uma minuciosa investigação jornalística e com o testemunho de especialistas, familiares e organizações antitráfico.

Women for Sale addresses the stages of the criminal trafficking of women in Argentina, from their capture and manners of tricking them, to the trafficking routes, sexual exploitation, and rescue. The courageous accounts from victims who managed to escape their horror intersect with data produced from a detailed journalistic investigation and with testimony from specialists, relatives, and anti-trafficking organizations.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: #DCMTEAM | PRODUCCIONES TRANSMEDIA – UNIVERSIDADE NACIONAL DE ROSÁRIO • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: DFERNANDO IRIGARAY E SUA EQUIPE DO DEPARTAMENTO DE COMUNICAÇÃO MULTIMÍDIA (#DCMTEAM)

documedia.com.ar/mujeres

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • ARGENTINA

Mujeres en Venta

Prison Valley é um road movie interativo que coloca o usuário no lugar de um jornalista que investiga a indústria carcerária nos Estados Unidos. A história se passa no coração do setor carcerário americano: o condado de Fremont, no Colorado, lugar que abriga 36 mil pessoas e treze prisões. Uma delas é a chamada ADX Supermax, única prisão de segurança máxima em território norte-americano.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ARTE E UPIAN • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: DAVID DUFRESNE E PHILIPPE BRAULT

prisonvalley.arte.tv

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • FRANÇA/FRANCE


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111

Do Not Track

2015

2016

Jerusalem: We Are Here é um documentário interativo que, por meio da tecnologia, traz os palestinos de volta a Jerusalém, de onde foram expulsos em 1948 para a constituição do Estado de Israel. O projeto foi desenvolvido entre 2012 e 2015 por meio de uma plataforma colaborativa que mapeou e trouxe à tona histórias de uma cidade não mais visível. Para isso, contou com a participação de palestinos que pesquisaram sobre o passado de suas famílias e seu doloroso presente. Junto com a equipe do documentário, produziram vídeos curtos e poéticos, repletos de nostalgia. Além de acessar os filmes, o público também pode participar de três tours virtuais pelas ruas do bairro de Katamon. Enquanto as cenas mostram uma Jerusalém contemporânea, a narração em off fala sobre o cotidiano na década de 1940.

Jerusalem: We Are Here is an interactive documentary which, using technology, brings Palestinians back to Jerusalem, from which they were expelled in 1948 for the creation of the State of Israel. The project was developed between 2012 and 2015 through a collaborative platform which mapped a no longer visible city, bringing back a forgotten history. It counted on the participation of Palestinians, who researched their family’s past and their painful present. Together with the documentary’s team, they produced short, poetic videos filled with nostalgia. As well as accessing the films, the public can also participate in three virtual tours through the streets of the Katamon neighborhood. While the scenes show a contemporary Jerusalem, the narrator speaks of everyday life in the 1940s.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: HELIOS DESIGN LABS • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: DORIT NAAMAN

info.jerusalemwearehere.com

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR:

Do Not Track is a documentary series about privacy and the web economy. During each of the seven interactive episodes, the user is asked to provide some data about herself and, with this, experience the methods and tools which trackers use commercially. The idea is to provoke reflections regarding the personal information which is collected and utilized by numerous companies and services, even when the person does not consciously authorize its use. Each episode explores one aspect of how the web has transformed into a space where movement, speech, and identity are recorded, tracked, and used without permission. From cellular telephones to social networks, from personalized advertisements to Big Data, each episode will have its own focus, narrative and visual style.

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • CANADÁ/CANADA

Jerusalem: We Are Here

Do Not Track é uma série documental sobre privacidade e economia na web. Durante cada um dos setes episódios interativos, o usuário é solicitado a fornecer alguns dados sobre si mesmo e, com isso, experimenta os métodos e ferramentas que rastreadores usam comercialmente. A ideia é provocar reflexões a respeito das informações pessoais que são coletadas e utilizadas por inúmeras empresas e serviços, mesmo quando a pessoa não autoriza conscientemente o uso. Cada episódio explora um aspecto de como a web tem se transformado em um espaço onde movimentos, fala e identidade são gravados, rastreados e utilizados sem permissão. Dos telefones celulares a redes sociais, de publicidade personalizada a Big Data, cada episódio tem um foco, narrativa e visual próprios.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: UPIAN, NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA (NFB), ARTE E BAYERISCHER RUNDFUNK (BR) • BRETT GAYLOR

donottrack-doc.com

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • CANADÁ/CANADA


Momento MX 2017

2014

Momento MX is an interactive documentary which sketches a picture of the recent creative communities in Mexico. The user can explore two thematic axes: one dedicated to independent publishers in Mexico City, and another which explores the electronic and experimental music scene in the country. Each theme includes five sections - actors, processes, products, markets, and panorama - and each of them unfolds in one interactive video and one immersive, 360o video. For example, the navigation architecture allows the user to compare the industries. The project foresees the future publication of four more thematic axes.

The Shirt on Your Back é um documentário interativo baseado no desastre de Rana Plaza, o acidente mais fatal da história da indústria mundial. Em 2013, uma gigantesca fábrica têxtil ruiu, matando mais de 1.130 pessoas e ferindo o dobro. Neste trabalho, o ciclo de vida de uma camisa é traçado e usado como mote disparador de questões sobre o terrível custo humano envolvido na fabricação dos milhares de peças que saem de Bangladesh direto para as prateleiras de marcas de roupas “fast fashion” em todo o mundo.

The Shirt on Your Back is an interactive documentary based on the Rana Plaza disaster, the deadliest accident in the history of global industry. In 2013, a gigantic textile factory collapsed, killing more than 1,130 people and injuring twice that. In this work, the life cycle of a shirt is traced and used as a jumping-off point for questions about the terrible human cost involved in fabricating the thousands of pieces which leave Bangladesh directly for the shelves of “fast fashion” clothing brands all over the world.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: THE GUARDIAN • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: LINDSAY POULTON

theguardian.com/world/ng-interactive/2014/apr/bangladesh-shirt-on-your-back

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • INGLATERRA E BANGLADESH/ENGLAND AND BANGLADESH

The Shirt on Your Back

Momento MX é um documentário interativo que traça um panorama sobre as recentes comunidades criativas no México. O usuário pode explorar dois eixos temáticos: um dedicado a editores independentes na Cidade do México e outro que explora o cenário da música eletrônica e experimental no país. Cada tema inclui cinco seções – atores, processos, produtos, mercado e panorama – e cada uma delas se desdobra em um vídeo interativo e um vídeo imersivo em 360o. A arquitetura de navegação permite ao usuário, por exemplo, comparar as indústrias entre si. O projeto prevê a publicação futura de mais quatro eixos temáticos.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: AURA CULTURA · REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: PABLO MARTÍNEZ ZÁRATE

momentomx.com

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • MÉXICO/MEXICO


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113

2011

2010

Bugarach: Cómo Sobrevivir al Apocalipsis is an interactive documentary about the only place which, according to the ancient Mayan civilization, would survive the end of the world, which they predicted for 21 December, 2012: the small village of Bugarach, north of the French Pyrenees. The playful platform gathers data and trivia about the place, and works like a videogame: the user can only advance in the story and survive the apocalypse by carrying out certain tasks - which include meeting some of the two-hundred residents and exploring the streets and forests in search of clues about the locale and the origin of the enigmatic prediction. The user’s choices, as well as the seasons of the year and its climatic changes are factors which alter the way the story is revealed. The project also includes other facets: a linear documentary, a participatory virtual community, and print and digital editions of a photobook with reflections on the film, based on the experience of filming.

This Land é um documentário interativo baseado na experiência vivida pela documentarista Dianne Whelan, primeira mulher a acompanhar a expedição de uma patrulha militar no norte do Canadá. Formada por sete homens, ocidentais e inuítes, o objetivo da missão era alcançar o extremo norte do país. Viajando em trenós motorizados, eles percorreram mais de 2 mil quilômetros em um dos locais mais ermos do planeta. Dianne registrou toda a experiência em vídeo, fotos e texto, narrados para esse projeto por Karin Konoval. A navegação é orientada em função dos dias – dezesseis, no total – que o grupo levou para completar a épica aventura no Ártico. Além disso, também são disponibilizados alguns dados climáticos que evidenciam as condições extremas que enfrentaram.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA (NFB) • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: DIANNE WHELAN E JEREMY MENDES

thisland.nfb.ca

This Land is an interactive documentary based on the experience of the documentarian Dianne Whelan, the first woman to join the expedition of a military patrol in northern Canada. Composed of seven Western and Inuit men, the mission’s objective was to reach the country’s extreme north. Riding snowmobiles, they traveled over 2 thousand kilometers in one of the most isolated areas on the planet. Dianne documented the experience in video, photos, and text, with narration by Karin Konoval. Navigation is guided by the days - sixteen in total -which the group took to complete the epic, Arctic adventure. Beyond these, there is also climate data which demonstrates the extreme conditions faced by the team.

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • CANADÁ/CANADA

This Land

Bugarach: Cómo Sobrevivir al Apocalipsis é um documentário interativo sobre o único lugar que, de acordo com a antiga civilização maia, sobreviveria ao fim do mundo previsto para o dia 21 de dezembro de 2012: a pequena vila de Bugarach, ao norte dos Pirineus franceses. A plataforma lúdica funciona como um videogame: o usuário só consegue avançar na história e sobreviver ao apocalipse se realizar algumas tarefas – o que inclui conhecer alguns dos duzentos moradores e explorar ruas e florestas em busca de pistas sobre o local e a origem da enigmática previsão. O projeto inclui um documentário linear, uma comunidade participativa virtual e edições impressa e digital de um livro de fotografias baseado nas experiências das filmagens.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: NANOUK FILMS E LAB RTVE • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: SERGI CAMERON

lab.rtve.es/webdocs/bugarach/

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • ESPANHA/SPAIN

Bugarach: Cómo Sobrevivir al Apocalipsis


Amazônia 2017

2015

The web documentary Amazônia, is a compilation of reports, videos, infographics, photographs, and podcasts about the Amazon, produced by the magazine Pesquisa Fapesp over nearly twenty years. The content was grouped in seven larger themes - geological formation, biodiversity, pre-Colombian peoples, populations, climate, biotechnologies, and perspectives -, addressing distinct areas of knowledge. The web documentary provides more than three hours of audio and video, as well as dozens of reports, interviews, and infographics.

Redes Estratégicas é um projeto composto por cinco vídeos interativos que apresentam parte das pesquisas-ações coordenadas pelo Departamento de Ações Programáticas Estratégicas (Dapes) do Ministério da Saúde, de 2011 a 2015. O trabalho se organiza em torno de redes temáticas, que incluem saúde da mulher, da criança, da pessoa com deficiência e da pessoa privada de liberdade. A divulgação dessas experiências tem o objetivo de ampliar a comunicação e informação sobre os temas e evidenciar a importância do Sistema Único de Saúde (SUS) na garantia de direitos básicos. O projeto conta com recursos de acessibilidade (Audiodescrição e Libras).

Redes Estratégicas is a project composed of five interactive videos which present part of the research-actions coordinated by the Department of Strategic and Programmatic Actions (DAPES) of the Ministry of Health between 2011 and 2015. The work is organized around thematic networks, which include women’s health, children’s health, and the health of handicapped people and those deprived of their freedom. The dissemination of these experiences has the objective of amplifying communication and information on these topics and demonstrating the importance of the Single Health System (SUS) in guaranteeing basic rights. The project includes accessibility features (Audio-description and Brazilian Sign Language).

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: JARDIM DIGITAL • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: GIULIANO DJAHJAH, GUSTAVO JUNQUEIRA E JULIO BRAGA

redesestrategicassus.org

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL

Redes Estratégicas

O webdocumentário Amazônia é uma compilação de reportagens, vídeos, infográficos, fotografias e podcasts sobre a Amazônia produzidos pela revista Pesquisa Fapesp ao longo de quase vinte anos. Os conteúdos foram agrupados em sete grandes temas – formação geológica, biodiversidade, povos pré-colombianos, populações, clima, biotecnologias e perspectivas –, abrangendo distintas áreas do conhecimento. Estão disponíveis no webdoc mais de três horas de áudios e vídeos, além de dezenas de reportagens, entrevistas, animações e infográficos.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: PERIPÉCIA FILMES • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: TIAGO MARCONI E CAIO POLESI

revistapesquisa.fapesp.br/webdoc/amazonia

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL


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115

Rio Frescobol

2018

2018 BRASIL/BRAZIL

Rio Frescobol is an interactive documentary which shows some of the history of this genuine Rio de Janeiro sport. Athletes and amateurs gathered at Copacabana beach and Flamengo Park present the philosophy and culture of frescobol, as well as the basic strokes of the sport and some trivia about it.

EntreVilas é o primeiro documentário interativo que mergulha nas vilas operárias e no contexto da urbanização paulistana. A proposta é discutir as relações entre trabalho e moradia, registrar o contexto em que as vilas foram construídas e sua relevância na constituição das famílias e na expansão da cidade de São Paulo. Com vídeos, fotos e textos, o projeto costura um traçado imaginário entre temáticas e personagens das vilas Maria Zélia (Cia. Nacional de Tecidos de Juta, 1916), Cerealina (Indústrias Reunidas Fábrica Matarazzo, 1924), Triângulo (Cia. Brasileira de Cimento Portland, 1926) e Economizadora (Moinho Santista, 1935).

EntreVilas is the first interactive documentary to dive into the model villages and the context of São Paulo urbanization. The proposal is to discuss the relationships between work and housing, documenting the context in which the villages were constructed and their relevance in the constitution of families and in the expansion of the city of Sao Paulo. With videos, photos, and texts, the project stiches together an imaginary outline between the themes and characters from the villages of Maria Zélia (Cia. Nacional de Tecidos de Juta, 1916), Cerealina (Indústrias Reunidas Fábrica Matarazzo, 1924), Triângulo (Cia. Brasileira de Cimento Portland, 1926) and Economizadora (Santista Mill, 1935).

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ESTÚDIO CRUA • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ESTÚDIO CRUA

entrevilasdoc.com.br

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY •

EntreVilas

Rio Frescobol é um documentário interativo que mostra um pouco da história deste esporte genuinamente carioca. Atletas e amadores reunidos na praia de Copacabana e no Aterro do Flamengo apresentam a filosofia e a cultura do frescobol, além dos golpes e curiosidades sobre o esporte.

PRODUÇÃO: CENTRAL DE PRODUÇÃO MULTIMÍDIA DA ESCOLA DE COMUNICAÇÃO DA UFRJ • REALIZAÇÃO: MESTRADO PROFISSIONAL EM CRIAÇÃO E PRODUÇÃO DE CONTEÚDOS DIGITAIS DA ESCOLA DE COMUNICAÇÃO DA UFRJ. A PARTIR DA IDEIA ORIGINAL DE ANTONIO J. CARVALHO, ALUNOS, PROFESSORES E TÉCNICOS TRABALHARAM COLABORATIVAMENTE NA REALIZAÇÃO DA OBRA / PRODUCTION: UFRJ SCHOOL OF COMMUNICATION MESTRADO PROFISSIONAL EM CRIAÇÃO E PRODUÇÃO DE CONTEÚDOS DIGITAIS. ORIGINAL IDEA BY ANTONIO J. CARVALHO. STUDENTS, PROFESSORS, AND TECHNICIANS WORKED IN COLLABORATION TO PRODUCE THE WORK.

riofrescobol.art.br

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL


2015

2017

Farmers Iracema and Dirceu Conofre de Campos and their fourteen children are part of a statistic which is not always associated with the state of Santa Catarina: that of people in extreme poverty. Over two years and seven months, a reporter accompanied this family, documenting their pain and their victories in audio, photo, and video. This material forms the foundation of As Quatro Estrações de Iracema e Dirceu, an interactive platform which invites the user to travel along this economic and social journey with a basis in the cycles of nature. The work won the 37th Vladimir Herzog Prize for Amnesty and Human Rights in the Multimedia category.

Híbridos is an ethnographic study into the multiplicity of the world of sacred, Brazilian ceremonies, and also into cinematographic language and its poetic potential. The interactive website hosts around 150 films, interviews, texts, and links to other authors’ works, the result of documenting more than seventy different ceremonies around the country over three years of wandering. From Afro-Brazilian ceremonies in Bahia to the new version of Umbanda in Minas Gerais; from ancestral indigenous ceremonies in Acre to the growing evangelical services in Rio de Janeiro, the project is the largest poetic collection of Brazilian spiritual culture, and is also unveiled as a feature film, live cinema performances, and site specific installations.

FEEVER FILMES E PETITES PLANÈTES • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: PRISCILLA TELMON E VINCENT

Híbridos é uma pesquisa etnográfica sobre a multiplicidade do mundo das cerimônias sagradas brasileiras e também sobre a linguagem cinematográfica e seu potencial poético. O website interativo abriga cerca de 150 filmes, entrevistas, textos e links para trabalhos de outros autores, resultado do registro de mais de sessenta cerimônias diferentes pelo país afora durante três anos de andanças. Dos cultos afro-brasileiros da Bahia às novas formas da umbanda em Minas Gerais; dos rituais indígenas ancestrais no Acre aos crescentes cultos evangélicos no Rio de Janeiro, o projeto é a maior coleção poética sobre a cultura espiritual brasileira e se desdobra também em um filme longa-metragem, performances de cinema ao vivo e instalações site specific.

MOON

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION:

hibridos.cc

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL E FRANÇA/BRAZIL AND FRANCE

Híbridos: Os Espíritos do Brasil

Os agricultores Iracema e Dirceu Canofre de Campos e seus catorze filhos fazem parte de uma estatística nem sempre associada ao estado de Santa Catarina: a das pessoas em situação de miséria. Ao longo de dois anos e sete meses, uma repórter acompanhou essa família, registrando em áudio, foto e vídeo suas dores e vitórias. Esse material é a base de As Quatro Estações de Iracema e Dirceu, uma plataforma interativa que convida o usuário a percorrer essa travessia econômica e social com base nos ciclos da natureza. O trabalho venceu o 37o Prêmio Vladimir Herzog de Anistia e Direitos Humanos na categoria Multimídia.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: DIÁRIO CATARINENSE • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ÂNGELA BASTOS

clicrbs.com.br/sites/swf/DC_quatro_estacoes_iracema_dirceu

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL

As Quatro Estações de Iracema e Dirceu


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117

Mapas Afetivos

2014

2016

Cities are not made of concrete, but stories, and their people are their greatest wealth, their color. The project, Mapas Afetivos, unites and geo-locates dozens of video accounts of both famous and everyday people, about notable memories imprinted in the neighborhoods, streets, parks and homes which, sometimes, no longer exist. Through these accounts, it is possible to become familiar with a once invisible city, now more human, composed of affects and intimacy. The project also includes cultural workshops on affective recognition of territories in various cities around the country.

Meu Rio Vale um Webdoc é um documentário interativo que apresenta um mosaico de “postais audiovisuais” do Rio de Janeiro, criados por alunos do curso homônimo realizado nas Naves do Conhecimento em 2016. Os vídeos apresentam as principais paisagens e personagens de Irajá, Madureira, Vila Aliança, Padre Miguel, Triagem, Nova Brasília, Penha e Santa Cruz, locais onde o curso foi realizado. A produção coletiva reúne imagens de drone, vídeos em 360o, time-lapses, clipes musicais e registros de percursos e leituras poéticas, rodas de rap e de capoeira, além de entrevistas com artistas, religiosos e peladeiros locais. O usuário ainda pode enviar um postal audiovisual por e-mail, escolhendo três vídeos de cada bairro.

Meu Rio Vale um Webdoc is an interactive and collaborative documentary which presents a mosaic of “audiovisual postcards” of Rio de Janeiro, created by groups of students from the course held in Naves do Conhecimento in 2016. The collective production gathered drone images, 360o videos, time lapses, interviews, musical clips, from each of the eight neighborhoods which host the Naves do Conhecimento (Irajá, Madureira, Vila Aliança, Padre Miguel, Triagem, Nova Brasília, Penha, and Santa Cruz). The user can also send an audiovisual postcard by email, and choose three videos from each neighborhood to create it.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: NAVES DO CONHECIMENTO E CRIA PROJETOS E NARRATIVAS • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ALUNOS DAS NAVES DO CONHECIMENTO, FELIPE VARANDA E MAYRA JUCÁ

meuriovaleumwebdoc.com.br

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • EUA/USA

Meu Rio Vale um Webdoc

As cidades não são feitas de concreto, mas de histórias, e têm nas pessoas sua maior riqueza, seu colorido. O projeto Mapas Afetivos reúne e geolocaliza dezenas de relatos em vídeo, de gente famosa e de desconhecidos, sobre memórias marcantes impressas em bairros, ruas, parques e casas que, por vezes, nem existem mais. Por meio dessas falas, é possível conhecer uma cidade antes invisível, mais humana, composta por afeto e intimidade. O projeto inclui também oficinas culturais de reconhecimento afetivo de territórios em diversas cidades do país.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: LIQUID MEDIA LAB • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: FELIPE LAVIGNATTI E ANDRÉ DEAK

mapasafetivos.com.br

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL


2016

2013

The Oficinas Kinoforum de Realização Audiovisual [Kinoforum Audiovisual Production Workshops] interactive catalog gathers a vast array of content produced by the project, which was created in 2001 by the Associação Cultural Kinoforum to awaken an interest in film production amongst underprivileged youth. During its workshops, participants have the opportunity to elaborate, produce, and film their own work.

Se Eu Demorar uns Meses é um webdocumentário composto por dez vídeos curtos baseados nos relatos de presos políticos opositores à ditadura militar brasileira. Foram interpretados por Juan Martyn e Neusa Velasco e gravados no interior do Memorial da Resistência, antigo prédio do DOPS – considerada uma das polícias políticas mais truculentas do país –, mais especificamente nas áreas que reproduzem as celas tal como eram no período entre 1971 e 1982. O projeto também reúne fotografias coletadas no Arquivo Público do Estado de São Paulo. Um resgate da memória que coloca o documentário e a linguagem web como ferramentas a serviço da reflexão e da verdade, abordando questões políticas, sociais, culturais e, sobretudo, históricas.

If I Am a Few Months Late is a web documentary consisting of ten short videos based on the accounts of political prisoners who opposed the Brazilian military dictatorship. They were interpreted by Juan Martyn and Neusa Velasco and recorded inside the Memorial da Resistência, the old headquarters of DOPS - considered to be one of the most violent political police forces in the country -, more specifically in the areas which reproduce the cells as they were between 1971 and 1982. The project also gathers photographs collected from the São Paulo State Public Archives. A recovery of memory which uses the web documentary and language as tools in service of reflection and truth, addressing political, social, cultural, and, above all, historical issues.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: DOCTELA • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: GIOVANNI FRANCISCHELLI E LÍVIA PEREZ

doctela.com.br/se-eu-demorar-uns-meses/

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL

Se Eu Demorar uns Meses

O catálogo interativo das Oficinas Kinoforum de Realização Audiovisual reúne o vasto conteúdo produzido pelo projeto, criado em 2001 pela Associação Cultural Kinoforum para despertar o interesse de jovens carentes pela criação cinematográfica. Durante as oficinas, os participantes têm a oportunidade de elaborar, produzir e filmar seus próprios trabalhos.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ASSOCIAÇÃO CULTURAL KINOFORUM E CROP COLETIVO • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ASSOCIAÇÃO CULTURAL KINOFORUM E CROP COLETIVO

kinoforum.org.br/oficinas/

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL

Oficinas Kinoforum de Realização Audiovisual


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Pedalei Até Aqui?

2015

2014

The interactive documentary, Pedalei Até Aqui?, features stories and accounts of those who travel by bike and fight for the mode of transportation in the city of Sao Paulo. The project gathers videos, photos, audio, and texts collected during the opening of the last stretch of the Ave. Paulista bike path, on August 23rd, 2015, considered a milestone moment in the history of Sao Paulo bike activism. The production and execution of the whole platform was carried out in five days by nine participants in the Webkino workshops, during the 26th Sao Paulo International Short Film Festival.

Copa para Quem é um documentário interativo sobre temas obscuros que envolvem a Copa do Mundo FIFA de 2014, realizada no Brasil. Quais os reais impactos deste megaevento na vida da população? Assuntos como turismo sexual, população de rua, desapropriações e movimentos sociais são tratados por meio da perspectiva de personagens que moram em Fortaleza (Ceará), uma das doze cidades-sede do evento e detentora de altos índices de desigualdade e violência.

Copa para Quem is an interactive documentary about the darker themes revolving around the 2014 FIFA World Cup held in Brazil. In what ways did this mega event impact the lives of the people? Subjects such as sex tourism, the homeless population, forced displacement, and social movements are addressed from the perspective of people who live in Fortaleza (Ceará), one of the event’s twelve host cities, and a place with high levels of inequality and violence.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: SWITCH ASBL • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: MARYSE WILLIQUET

copaparaquem.com

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BÉLGICA/BELGIUM

Copa para Quem

O documentário interativo Pedalei Até Aqui? traz histórias e relatos de quem anda de bike e de quem luta por essa modalidade de transporte na cidade de São Paulo. O projeto reúne vídeos, fotos, áudios e textos colhidos durante a abertura do último trecho da ciclovia da Avenida Paulista, no dia 23 de agosto de 2015, considerada um marco para a história do cicloativismo paulistano. A produção e execução de toda a plataforma foram realizadas em cinco dias pelos nove participantes da Oficina de Webkino, durante o 26o Festival Internacional de Curtas-Metragens de São Paulo.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: BUG 404 E CROP COLETIVO • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ANDRÉ PAZ E JULIA SALLES

bug404.net/pedalei/

DOCUMENTÁRIO INTERATIVO/INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY • BRASIL/BRAZIL


The Enemy

2017

The Enemy é um aplicativo para dispositivo móvel que mescla realidade aumentada e mista para colocar o participante frente a frente com combatentes de três das zonas de conflito atuais mais dramáticas e violentas do mundo: El Salvador, República Democrática do Congo e a fronteira de Israel e Palestina. Antes da experiência principal, é exibido um vídeo em 360o do local selecionado para contextualizar as histórias que estão prestes a serem vivenciadas. Surgem então os combatentes contando suas narrativas, e o participante, com o celular em mãos, pode caminhar até um deles e examiná-lo mais de perto.

The Enemy is a mobile device application which blends augmented and mixed reality to place the participant face to face with combatants from three of the most dramatic and violent conflict zones in the world: El Salvador, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Israeli Palestinian border. Before the main experience, a 360o video of the selected locale is shown to contextualize the stories which are ready to be experienced. Then the combatants arise, telling their narratives, and the participant, cell phone in hand, can walk to one of them and explore them up close.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA (NFB), CAMERA LUCIDA, EMISSIVE, FRANCETV NOUVELLES ÉCRITURES AND DPT. • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: KARIM BEN KHELIFA

theenemyishere.org

NARRATIVA MOBILE/MOBILE NARRATIVE • CANADÁ E FRANÇA/CANADA AND FRANCE

MOBILE NARRATIVES

NARRATIVAS MOBILE


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2012

2016

Alma: A Tale of Violence is a documentary for mobile devices about a 26-year-old who was born in Guatemala and grew up in a reality in which laws and justice are constantly disrespected, where impunity reins and families mired in poverty destroy each other amidst the wars of urban gangs known as “maras”; For five years, Alma belonged to one of the most violent gangs in the country and lived immersed in murders, assaults, and brutality. She tells her powerful life story like a confession, face to face with the user, who can also choose whether or not to see some scenes which subjectively illustrate the story she tells.

Phallaina é considerada a primeira graphic novel de rolagem, especialmente projetada para as telas táteis de dispositivos móveis. Conta a história fictícia de Audrey, que mora em uma cidade construída sobre palafitas por conta da ascensão contínua das águas e ondas catastróficas. Ela sofre desde criança com alucinações de baleias e é diagnosticada com uma forma particular de epilepsia chamada “fiseter”, que permite que ela prenda a respiração embaixo d’água por muito mais tempo que o normal. Em busca de cura, ela inicia uma jornada de transformação pessoal, combinando ciências cognitivas e mitologia.

Phallaina is considered first scrolling graphic novel, specifically designed for the touch screens of mobile devices. It tells the fictitious story of Audrey who lives in a city built on stilts because of the continually rising waters and tidal waves. Since she was a child, she has suffered from hallucinations of whales and is diagnosed with a peculiar form of epilepsy called “physeter”, which allows her to hold her breath under water for far longer than normal. In search of a cure, she embarks on a journey of personal transformation, combining cognitive science with mythology.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: SMALL BANG STUDIO AND FRANCETV NOUVELLES ÉCRITURES • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: MARIETTA REN

phallaina.nouvelles-ecritures.francetv.fr/phallaina_en.php

NARRATIVA MOBILE/MOBILE NARRATIVE • FRANÇA/FRANCE

Phallaina

Alma: Une Enfant de la Violence é um documentário para dispositivo móvel sobre a jovem homônima de 26 anos que nasceu na Guatemala e cresceu em uma realidade na qual leis e justiça são continuamente desrespeitadas, onde impera a impunidade e famílias atoladas na pobreza se destroem em meio a guerras de gangues urbanas, conhecidas como “maras”. Alma integrou por cinco anos um dos grupos mais violentos do país e viveu imersa em assassinatos, agressões e brutalidade. Ela narra sua forte história de vida como uma confissão, frente a frente com o usuário, que também pode escolher acionar ou não algumas cenas que ilustram, por vezes de maneira subjetiva, o que é contado pela personagem.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ARTE, UPIAN, AND AGENCE VU • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: ISABELLE FOUGÉRE AND MIQUEL DEWEVER PLANA

alma.arte.tv/en/webdoc/

NARRATIVA MOBILE/MOBILE NARRATIVE • FRANÇA/FRANCE

Alma: Une Enfant de la Violence


Inventeca 2018

2017

Inventeca presents various stories illustrated by authors of children’s and young adult literature, and allows the user to record their own narration. The application is ideal for fathers and mothers to tell their children stories, pushing them to create their own narratives, either together, or by recording audios for their children to listen to when their parents are away.

Nautilus é uma adaptação do livro Vinte mil léguas submarinas, de Júlio Verne. O app book é composto por 22 capítulos e traz o épico em linguagem audiovisual e interativa, totalmente narrado, com animações e efeitos de som. Conta com conteúdo extra sobre a vida do autor e suas motivações para criar narrativas de ficção, incluindo detalhes do livro que inspiraram cientistas e acabaram se tornando grandes invenções humanas na vida real. A proposta é levar os leitores a experimentar o pensamento inovador, unindo ciência e fantasia. Nautilus recebeu o Prêmio Jabuti de Literatura em 2017.

Nautilus is an adaptation of Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. The app book is composed of 22 chapters and features the epic in audiovisual, interactive language, fully narrated, with animations and sound effects. It includes extra content about the author’s life and his motivations for writing fiction, including details of the book which inspired scientists and whose ideas ended up becoming great human inventions in real life. The proposal is to lead the readers to experiment with innovative thought, uniting science and fantasy. Nautilus received the Prêmio Jabuti literature prize in 2017.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: STORYMAX • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: SAMIRA ALMEIDA, FERNANDO TANGI AND MAURÍCIO BOFF

storymax.me/nautilus

NARRATIVA MOBILE/MOBILE NARRATIVE • CANADÁ E FRANÇA/CANADA AND FRANCE

Nautilus

Inventeca apresenta diversas histórias ilustradas por autores de literatura infantojuvenil, e permite que os usuários gravem em áudio sua própria contação. O aplicativo é ideal para pais e mães contarem histórias aos filhos, instigando-os a criarem suas próprias narrativas, criando juntos, ou deixando áudios gravados para as crianças ouvirem quando os pais estiverem ausentes.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: STORYMAX • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: SAMIRA ALMEIDA, FERNANDO TANGI AND LAURO GOE

storymax.me/inventeca

NARRATIVA MOBILE/MOBILE NARRATIVE • BRASIL/BRAZIL


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Frritt-Flacc

2016

Frritt-Flacc é um app book de sete capítulos que traz o homônimo conto de suspense e terror de Júlio Verne, propondo uma reflexão sobre diferenças sociais e a pobreza ao apresentar o mesquinho Dr. Trifulgas – um médico que só presta atendimento a ricos – e mostrar o que o destino lhe reserva. A leitura engajadora, cheia de interatividade, efeitos de som e conteúdo extra, fez com que Frritt-Flacc fosse o único livro digital premiado entre os dez melhores livros de 2016, de acordo com a Cátedra Unesco de Leitura, além do Opening Up Reading Digital Fiction UK.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: STORYMAX, NOVOZYMES E SESI PARANÁ • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: SAMIRA ALMEIDA E FERNANDO TANGI

storymax.me/frrittflacc

NARRATIVA MOBILE/MOBILE NARRATIVE • FRANÇA/FRANCE

Fritt-Flacc is a seven-chapter app book which features Jules Verne’s tale of horror and suspense, proposing a reflection on social differences and poverty by presenting the stingy Dr. Trifulgas - a doctor who only tends to the rich - and shows what destiny has in store for him. An engaged reading, full of interactivity, sound effects, and extra content, made Frritt-Flacc the only award- winning digital book among the ten best books of 2016, according to the Cátedra UNESCO de Leitura, as well as Opening Up Reading Digital Fiction UK.

IMMERSIVE VÍDEO

VÍDEO IMERSIVO


Fogo na Floresta

2017

Fogo na Floresta é um documentário sobre o povo Waurá, uma das quinze etnias indígenas que vivem dentro do território do Parque Indígena do Xingu, no Mato Grosso. O filme retrata em narrativa imersiva o cotidiano da aldeia Piyulaga e as maneiras encontradas pelos indígenas para manter sua cultura tradicional, mesmo incorporando hábitos e tecnologias dos “brancos”. Também serve como um alerta para o perigo dos incêndios que, devido ao desmatamento ao redor do parque e ao agravamento das mudanças climáticas, saem muitas vezes do controle e ameaçam a vida na reserva. Este é o primeiro filme imersivo produzido em uma aldeia indígena na Floresta Amazônica e é narrado pela atriz Fernanda Torres.

Fogo na Floresta is a documentary about the Waurá, one of fifteen indigenous ethnicities living in the Xingu Indigenous Park in Mato Grosso. The film portrays, in immersive narration, the everyday life of the Piyulga village and the ways the indigenous people have found to maintain their traditional culture, even while incorporating habits and technologies from the “whites”; It also serves as a warning about the danger of fires, which, due to the deforestation around the park and the worsening of climate change, often burn out of control and threaten life within the reserve. This is the first immersive film produced in an indigenous village in the Amazon Forest, and is narrated by the actress Fernanda Torres.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ACADEMIA DE FILMES AND INSTITUTO SOCIOAMBIENTAL (ISA) • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: TADEU JUNGLE

youtu.be/Jv8nkw8hy-c

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • BRASIL/BRAZIL

2016

This short, immersive narrative documentary portrays the survivors of Brazil’s worst environmental tragedy with sensibility and melancholy. River of Mud shows what is left of the village Bento Rodrigues after the failure of the Samarco dam in Mariana (MG), and contrasts the devastated landscape with the emotional memories of its residents.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: TADEU JUNGLE

O curta-metragem documental em narrativa imersiva retrata os sobreviventes da maior tragédia ambiental do Brasil com delicadeza e melancolia. Rio de Lama mostra o que restou da vila de Bento Rodrigues após o rompimento da barragem da Samarco em Mariana (MG) e contrapõe a paisagem arrasada com as memórias afetivas de seus moradores..

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: JUNGLEBEE •

riodelama.com.br/

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • BRASIL/BRAZIL

Rio de Lama: A Maior Tragédia Ambiental do Brasil


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Amazônia Adentro 2017

2018

Amazônia Adentro is an immersive, 360 o documentary filmed in the middle of the forest. It is narrated by Kamanha Panashekung, of the Trio tribe in Suriname. Along the journey, he tells a bit about the relationship the indigenous have with the biome, and it is possible to see animals and even an archaeological site, all in an interactive, immersive format. The film, recorded in 360 o and dubbed by actor Marcos Palmeira, has the objective of guaranteeing that the participant hears, sees, and feels why the greatest tropical forest in the world is fundamental to human wellbeing, and why the indigenous are so important for its conservation.

My Africa é um filme de narrativa imersiva produzido em meio ao Santuário de Elefantes Reteti, no Quênia, primeiro caso de uma instituição criada e gerenciada por uma comunidade local. A história é narrada pela jovem Naltwasha Leripe, que conduz o participante em uma experiência imersiva no dia a dia do povo Samburu, retratando as maneiras que encontram para garantir o próprio sustento e a sobrevivência dos animais que se encontram no território – há o registro, por exemplo, do resgate de um elefante das mãos de caçadores. O principal objetivo do projeto é despertar a consciência sobre a importância da conservação da vida selvagem no continente africano e as possibilidades de garantir a coexistência de humanos e animais.

My Africa is an immersive narrative film produced in the middle of the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary in Kenya, the first such institution which was created and managed by a local community. The story is narrated by the young Naltwasha Leripe, who guides the participant along in an immersive, day-today experience of the Samburu people, portraying the ways they have found to guarantee their own livelihood and the survival of the animals found in the territory - for example, it it shows the moment an elephant is rescued from the hands of hunters. The main objective of the project is to raise awareness of the importance of wildlife conservation on the African continent and the possibilities of guaranteeing the coexistence of humans and animals.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: PASSION PLANET AND VISION3 • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: CONSERVATION INTERNATIONAL

conservacao.org.br/myafrica

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • BRASIL E KENYA/BRAZIL AND KENYA

My Africa

Amazônia Adentro é um documentário imersivo rodado em 360º no meio da floresta. A narrativa é conduzida pelo indígena Kamanja Panashekung, da tribo Trio, do Suriname. Durante o percurso, ele conta um pouco da relação dos índios com o bioma e é possível avistar animais e até mesmo um sítio arqueológico, tudo de forma interativa e imersiva. O filme, gravado em 360o e dublado pelo ator Marcos Palmeira, tem como objetivo garantir que o participante ouça, veja e sinta por que a maior floresta tropical do mundo é fundamental para o bem-estar humano e por que os indígenas são tão importantes para a sua conservação.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: JAUNT VR • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: CONSERVATION INTERNATIONAL

conservation.org/global/brasil/Pages/Amazonia-Adentro.aspx

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • BRASIL, EQUADOR E SURINAME/BRAZIL, ECUADOR AND SURINAME


Step to the Line

2017

Revelação

2018

Revelação é uma narrativa imersiva inspirada na obra As Cores do Crepúsculo: A Estética do Envelhecer, de Rubem Alves. Proporciona uma experiência imersiva a bordo de um ônibus, colocando o participante na perspectiva do personagem principal, um idoso, que narra suas impressões sobre as cenas que se sucedem durante o trajeto. Realização:

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: PYNTADO ENTRETENIMENTO AND GOVISION • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: GUSTAVO MARTINEZ AND THIAGO TOSHIO

facebook.com/PyntadoEntretenimento/

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • BRASIL/BRAZIL

Revelação is an immersive narrative inspired by Rubem Alves’ As Cores do Crepúsculo: A Estética do Envelhecer. It provides an immersive experience on board a bus, placing the participant in the shoes of the main character, a senior, who narrates his impressions about the scenes which take place along the journey.

Step to the Line is an immersive experience in maximum security prisons in California, USA. The virtual reality documentary aims to show new perspectives of prisons and the prison system. It is part of the VR for Good program, which connected ten rising filmmakers with nonprofit organizations to create provocative projects about social issues.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: RICARDO LAGANARO

Step to the Line é uma experiência imersiva em prisões de segurança máxima na Califórnia, EUA. O documentário em realidade virtual tem como objetivo trazer novas perspectivas sobre os prisioneiros e o sistema prisional. É parte do programa VR for Good, que conectou dez cineastas em ascensão com organizações sem fins lucrativos para criar projetos provocadores sobre questões sociais.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: OCULUS AND DEFY VENTURES •

oculus.com/vr-for-good/programs/step-to-the-line

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • BRASIL/BRAZIL


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2017

2016

Through the Masks of LUZIA, based on one of Cirque du Soleil’s acclaimed shows, is a celebration of Mexican culture, enmeshed in surrealism and dreamlike fantasy. Considered the first virtual reality experience made through hyper- and hypostereoscopic processes, it allows the participant to feel like a giant, only to then feel tiny in the midst of unbelievable acrobatic scenes. To further augment the immersion, the company’s creative teams redesigned the artistic performance to create something completely new.

Mergulhe no mundo hipnótico de Dreams of “O”, em uma experiência em narrativa imersiva composta por acrobacias aéreas, mergulhos ousados, fogo e os personagens anfíbios surreais do famoso espetáculo do Cirque du Soleil. Para captar as complexas coreografias de água que constituem parte da essência da apresentação, a equipe contou com uma câmera VR para mergulho, de alta velocidade, construída especialmente para o projeto e considerada a primeira do gênero no mundo.

Dive into the hypnotic world of Dreams of “O”, in an immersive narrative experience comprised of aerial acrobatics, daring dives, fire, and the surreal amphibious characters of Cirque du Soleil’s famous spectacle. To capture the complex water choreography which constitutes part of the presentation’s essence, the team used an underwater, high-speed VR camera, constructed specifically for the project and considered to be the first of its kind in the world.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: CIRQUE DO SOLEIL AND FELIX & PAUL STUDIOS REALIZAÇÃO/CREATORS: FÉLIX LAJEUNESSE, PAUL RAPHAËL AND FRANÇOIS BLOUIN.

https://www.felixandpaul.com/?projects/o

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • CANADÁ/CANADA

Dreams of “O”

Through the Masks of LUZIA, baseado em um dos aclamados espetáculos do Cirque du Soleil, é uma celebração da cultura mexicana, envolta em surrealismo e fantasia onírica. Considerada a primeira experiência em realidade virtual feita por meio de processos de hiperestereoscopia e hipoestereoscopia, permite que o participante ora se sinta como um gigante ora como uma miniatura em meio a cenas de acrobacias inacreditáveis. Para aumentar ainda mais a imersão, as equipes de criação da companhia redesenharam as performances artísticas, criando algo completamente novo.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: CIRQUE DU SOLEIL AND FELIX & PAUL STUDIOS • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: FÉLIX LAJEUNESSE, PAUL RAPHAËLN E FRANÇOIS BLOUIN

oculus.com/experiences/gear-vr/1360461600675039/

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • CANADÁ/CANADA

Through the Masks of LUZIA


Syria’s Silence

2016

2017

This immersive narrative documentary tells the story of Al-Shaddada, a city a few kilometers from the front line of the Islamic State terrorist group. The area was recently liberated, but the majority of its residents had already abandoned their homes long before. Syria’s Silence portrays a Kurdish ghost city, where rubble is strewn across the streets and a dark tension hangs in the air.

Em 2014, combatentes do Estado Islâmico invadiram o Iraque e atacaram a comunidade Yazidi de Sinjar. Os homens foram mortos e mais de 3 mil mulheres e meninas foram escravizadas sexualmente. Algumas conseguiram escapar e formaram um grupo de combate feminino intitulado Senhoras do Sol, com o objetivo de resgatar suas irmãs e proteger a honra e a dignidade de seu povo. A experiência em narrativa imersiva em The Sun Ladies acompanha a jornada pessoal da líder do grupo, Xate Shingali. Revela desde as suas raízes como famosa cantora no Curdistão até a nova vida como soldada nas linhas de frente, arriscando tudo para acabar com a violência contra seu povo.

In 2014, Islamic State combatants invaded Iraq and attacked the Yazidi community of Sinjar. The men were killed and more than 3 thousand women and girls were made into sex slaves. Some managed to escape and form a female combat group called The Sun Ladies, with the objective of rescuing their sisters and protecting the honor and dignity of their people. The immersive narrative experience in The Sun Ladies accompanies the personal journey of the group’s leader, Xate Shingali. It portrays her story from her roots as a famous singer in Kurdistan to her new life as a frontline soldier, risking everything to end the violence against her people.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: LUCID DREAMS PRODUCTIONS • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: CELINE TRICART, CHRISTIAN STEPHEN E MARIA BELLO

luciddreamsprod.com/

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • EUA/USA

The Sun Ladies

Este documentário em narrativa imersiva conta a história de Al-Shaddadi, uma cidade a poucos quilômetros da linha de frente do grupo terrorista Estado Islâmico. O lugar acaba de ser libertado, mas a maioria dos habitantes já havia abandonado suas casas bem antes. Syria’s Silence retrata uma cidade fantasma curda, onde destroços se espalham pelas ruas e uma tensão sombria está suspensa no ar.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: FISHEYE • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: JENS FRANSSEN

fisheyevr.eu/portfolio/syrias-silence

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • BÉLGICA/BELGIUM


I, Philip 2016

2017

I, Philip is a science fiction film in immersive narrative. Philip - or just Phil - is an android created in 2005 by an American robotics engineer, and is a copy of the famous science fiction author Philip K. Dick. Within a few weeks, Phil becomes famous on the web and in the author’s fan groups, and he is presented in various conferences around the world until the disappearance of his creator during a flight from Dallas to Las Vegas. Through the memory of the robot and the engineer himself, the film offers an interpretation of Phil’s life.

The Party é uma experiência em narrativa imersiva sobre autismo, que coloca o participante no lugar da adolescente Layla, recém-diagnosticada, durante a festa de aniversário surpresa de sua mãe. Por meio da narração dos pensamentos de Layla, é possível experienciar a sobrecarga sensorial e auditiva a que fica exposta e suas tentativas de lidar com uma situação estressante usando os mecanismos de enfrentamento que criou para administrar sua ansiedade. O drama fornece uma poderosa perspectiva em primeira pessoa sobre os desafios que situações sociais podem representar para autistas. O projeto envolveu a consultoria e participação direta de mulheres de espectro autista, como Sumita Majumdar, que escreveu o roteiro, e Honey Jones, que faz a voz de Layla.

The Party is an immersive narrative about autism, which puts the participant in the place of the recently-diagnosed teenager, Layla, during her mother’s surprise birthday party. Through the narration of Layla’s thoughts, it is possible to experience the sensory overload which she is exposed to, and her attempts to deal with a stressful situation using the coping mechanisms she has created to deal with her anxiety. The drama provides a powerful, first-person perspective of the challenges which social situations can represent to autistic people. The project involved the consultation and direct participation of women on the autism spectrum, such as Sumita Majumdar, who wrote the script, and Honey Jones, who provides Layla’s voice.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: THE GUARDIAN • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: AMRICK BREGMAN, LUCY HAWKING, AND SHEHANI FERNANDO

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/oct/07/theparty-a-virtual-experience-of-autism-360-video

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • INGLATERRA/ENGLAND

The Party

I, Philip é um filme de ficção científica em narrativa imersiva. Philip – ou apenas Phil – é um androide criado em 2005 por um engenheiro de robótica americano, e é a cópia do famoso autor de ficção científica Philip K. Dick. Em poucas semanas, Phil fica famoso na web e nos círculos de fãs do autor e é apresentado em várias conferências ao redor do mundo. Até o desaparecimento de seu criador, durante um voo entre Dallas e Las Vegas. Por meio das memórias do robô e do próprio engenheiro, o filme oferece uma interpretação da vida de Phil.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ARTE AND OKIO STUDIO • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: PIERRE ZANDROWICZ

www.mk2films.com/en/film/i-philip

VÍDEO IMERSIVO/IMMERSIVE VIDEO • FRANÇA/FRANCE


The Little Prince

2018

In The Little Prince, the participant dives into Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s classic work, interacting with his characters like never before. Since its first edition in 1943, the book has sold 140 million copies, making it the fourth best selling book of all time. This is the work’s first virtual reality adaptation.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: RED ACCENT STUDIOS

Em The Little Prince, o participante mergulha na clássica obra de Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, interagindo com seus personagens como nunca antes. Desde a primeira edição, em 1943, o livro já vendeu mais de 140 milhões de cópias, entrando no quarto lugar dos mais vendidos de todos os tempos. Esta é a primeira adaptação da obra para realidade virtual.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: RED ACCENT STUDIOS •

thelittleprincevr.com/

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • FRANÇA/FRANCE

VIRTUAL REALITY

REALIDADE VIRTUAL


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Nothing Happens

2012

2016

Nothing Happens is a virtual reality art installation which questions the role of the spectator by inviting the participant to witness an event through a new way of watching, and also of being watched. This is possible thanks to VR technology, which allows for a deep immersion in the narrative.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: MICHELLE E URI KRANOT

Allumette é um filme em realidade virtual inspirado no conto A Pequena Vendedora de Fósforos, de Hans Christian Andersen. A história trata do amor de uma mãe pela filha e os sacrifícios que ambas fazem por um bem maior. Depois de sofrer uma tragédia, a jovem se agarra à esperança para persistir em seu caminho. O mundo fantástico criado para abrigar a história lembra uma Veneza flutuando no céu, com nuvens cobrindo os edifícios como ondas, em meios a canais de ar sinuosos como rios.

Allumette is a virtual reality film inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s tale, The Little Match Girl. The story is about a mother’s love for her daughter, and the sacrifices they both make for a greater good. After suffering a tragedy, the young girl clings to the hope of continuing along her path. The fantasy world created to hold the story is reminiscent of a Venice floating in the sky, with clouds covering the buildings like waves, among channels of air as sinuous as rivers.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: PENROSE STUDIOS • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: EUGENE YK CHUNG

penrosestudios.com/stories/2016/4/13/introducing-allumette

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • EUA/USA

Allumette

Nothing Happens é uma instalação artística com realidade virtual que questiona o papel do espectador, convidando o participante a testemunhar um evento sob uma nova maneira de olhar, mas também de ser assistido. Um espetáculo de ver e também ser visto e vigiado. Sobre estar presente. Isso é possível graças à tecnologia VR, que permite uma profunda imersão na narrativa.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: DANSK TEGNEFILM E MIYU PRODUCTIONS •

tindrum.dk/project/nothing-happens/

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • DINAMARCA E FRANÇA/DENMARK AND FRANCE


Altération 2017

2017

Alexandro volunteers for an experiment about dreams, but does not know that scientists will inject him with Elsa, a form of artificial intelligence which will digitize and take over his subconscious to help her turn into a human being. Alteration is science fiction in virtual reality, which gives the participant the chance to accompany the experiment directly from Alexandro’s invaded mind, while Elsa evolves.

The Dream Collector is a virtual reality animation which tells the story of a man and his playful dog, who spend days in a garbage dump looking for “treasure.” The objects they find - a broken guitar, a ripped baseball glove, an deflated soccer ball, for example - are the remains of abandoned dreams. Determined to give them new meaning, the man carefully fixes them and gives them away as presents.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: LI MI

The Dream Collector é uma animação feita em realidade virtual que conta a história de um homem e seu cachorro brincalhão que passam os dias em um depósito de lixo procurando “tesouros”. Os objetos encontrados – um violão quebrado, uma luva de beisebol rasgada, uma bola de futebol vazia, por exemplo – são como remanescentes de sonhos abandonados. Determinado a ressignificá-los, o homem conserta minuciosamente cada um e os dá de presente.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: PINTA STUDIOS •

pintastudios.com

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • CHINA

The Dream Collector

Alexandro se voluntaria para um experimento sobre sonhos, mas não está ciente de que os cientistas irão implantar nele Elsa, uma inteligência artificial que irá digitalizar e assumir seu subconsciente com o objetivo de se transformar em um ser humano. Altération é uma ficção científica em realidade virtual que dá a chance do participante acompanhar o experimento direto da mente invadida de Alexandro, enquanto Elsa evolui.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ARTE FRANCE, OKIO STUDIO, METRONOMIC E SAINT-GEORGE STUDIO • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: JÉRÔME BLANQUET

arte.tv/sites/webproductions/alteration

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • FRANÇA/FRANCE


REALIDADE VIRTUAL  |  VIRTUAL REALITY · 130-134

133

Museum of Symmetry

2018

2018

An absurd mind-and-body romp, the Museum of Symmetry uses virtual reality to reproduce the explosive universe of cartoonist and animator Paloma Dawkins. Like a metaphor for real life transported to a room, the experience leads the participant through landscapes of earth, fire, wind and water, where 2D characters inhabit a 3D environment. In a clear provocation to the conventional narrative of games, there are no rules to be followed or objectives to be fulfilled. Only an invitation to enjoy, in a disconcerting environment inspired by geometry and nature. Perhaps the biggest surprise is not what happens during the gameplay itself, but how you feel once you return to the real world.

Tales of Wedding Rings é um mangá japonês imersivo, desenvolvido em realidade virtual. A experiência mantém a clássica estética monocromática e adiciona um campo de visão em 360o. A história gira em torno da relação entre dois estudantes adolescentes: Satou e Hime. O rapaz acaba seguindo a amiga de infância por um portal que os leva a outro mundo. Satou descobre então que Hime é uma princesa e, por circunstâncias bizarras, casa-se com ela, transformando-se no Ring King. Acaba descobrindo que, para cumprir seu maior desafio, banir Abyss King, precisará se casar novamente… com outras cinco princesas! O que mais pode acontecer nessa aventura?

Tales of Wedding Rings is an immersive Japanese manga developed in virtual reality. The experience maintains the classic, monochromatic aesthetic and adds a 360o field of vision. The story revolves around the relationship between two teenage students: Satou and Hime. The boy ends up following his childhood friend through a portal that takes them to another world. Satou then discovers that Hime is a princess and, through bizarre circumstances, marries her, becoming the Ring King. He ends up discovering that, to overcome his greatest challenge, that of banishing the Abyss King, he will need to marry again...with five other princesses! What else might happen along this adventure?

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: SQUARE ENIX • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: KAEI SOU

jp.square-enix.com/mangainvr/

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • JAPÃO/JAPAN

Tales of Wedding Rings

Um absurdo jogo de mente e corpo, o Museum of Symmetry reproduz em realidade virtual o explosivo universo da cartunista e animadora Paloma Dawkins. Como uma metáfora da vida real transportada para uma sala, a experiência leva o participante a paisagens de terra, fogo, vento e água, onde personagens 2D habitam um cenário 3D. Em uma clara provocação à narrativa convencional de jogos, não há regras a serem cumpridas ou objetivos a serem conquistados. Apenas um convite ao deleite, em um cenário desconcertante inspirado na geometria e na natureza. Talvez a maior surpresa não seja o que acontece durante a experiência, mas que sensações ficam quando se retorna ao mundo real.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: CASA RARA STUDIO E NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA (NFB) • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: MICHELLE E URI KRANOT

mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/museumofsymmetry

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • CANADÁ/CANADA


Zero Days VR 2017

2015

Way to Go é uma experiência interativa em um mundo particular. Uma paisagem de folhas e flores silvestres, repleta de vida oculta. Um jardim e um deserto, um piscar de olhos melancólico. O participante é uma caricatura com rosto e membros, caminhando. Ou correndo. Ou voando. Como um desbravador em uma grande aventura. Ou simplesmente um indivíduo em um passeio contemplativo. Usando animações feitas à mão, música, vídeo 360 e programação, Way to Go é um mundo de sonhos. Em um momento em que existe acesso a tanto, e se enxerga tão pouco, o projeto propõe o delicioso e súbito prazer da descoberta.

Way to Go is an interactive experience in a private world. A landscape of leaves and wild flowers, filled with hidden life. A garden and a desert, a melancholic blink of the eye. The participant is a cartoon, with face and limbs, that walks. Or runs. Or flies. Like a pioneer on a grand adventure. Or simply an individual on a contemplative hike. Using handmade animation, 360 video, and programming, Way to Go is a world of dreams. At a time when we have access to so much, and see so little, the project will remind you of the luscious, sudden pleasure of discovery.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: VINCENT

Zero Days VR is a virtual reality version of the award-winning short film with the same name. The story revolves around the Stuxnet virus, the first cyber weapon known to cause physical damage in the real world. The participant experiences the invisible world of cyber warfare from the perspective of the virus, designed by the USA and Israel, and sent on a clandestine mission to sabotage an underground Iranian nuclear facility.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA (NFB) E FRANCETV NOUVELLES ÉCRITURES • MORISSET

a-way-to-go.com

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • CANADÁ E FRANÇA/CANADA AND FRANCE

Way to Go

Zero Days VR é a versão em realidade virtual do premiado curta-metragem de mesmo nome. A história gira em torno do vírus Stuxnet, considerado a primeira arma cibernética do mundo capaz de causar danos físicos no mundo real. O participante experimenta o mundo invisível da guerra cibernética da perspectiva do vírus, projetado pelos EUA e Israel e enviado em uma missão clandestina para sabotar uma instalação nuclear iraniana subterrânea.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: SCATTER • REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: YASMIN ELAYAT

zerodaysvr.com

REALIDADE VIRTUAL/VR • EUA/USA


Som dos Sinos

2014

The Sounds of Bells is a multiplatform project and a pioneer in the use of new media to disseminate intangible cultural heritage. Focusing on the sound of bells and the work of bell ringers, it gathers a broad range of audiovisual material from nine historical cities in Minas Gerais, known for their more than forty different bell sounds, which identify liturgical rites, deaths, types of masses, births, fires, and holy hours. An immersive experience into the world of belfries and the relation of the human with the divine.

REALIZAÇÃO/CREATOR: MARCIA MANSUR E MARINA THOMÉ

Som dos Sinos é um projeto multiplataforma e pioneiro na utilização de novas mídias para a divulgação de patrimônio imaterial. Tendo como foco o Toque dos Sinos e o Ofício de Sineiro, reúne um amplo material audiovisual sobre nove cidades históricas de Minas Gerais, conhecidas por seus mais de quarenta toques de sinos, que identificam ritos litúrgicos, mortes, tipos de missas, partos, incêndios e horários sacros. Uma experiência imersiva no ambiente dos campanários e na relação do humano com o divino.

PRODUÇÃO/PRODUCTION: ESTÚDIO CRUA •

somdossinos.com.br

INSTALAÇÃO TRANSMÍDIA/TRANSMEDIA INSTALLATION • BRASIL/BRAZIL

TRANSMEDIA INSTALLATION

INSTALAÇÃO TRANSMÍDIA