Retracing Heinrich Barth at the Brunei Gallery, SOAS: using digital technologies to support exhibition development and encourage visitor participation
Winckler , Julia, Carillo, Erminia, Rodriguez-Echavarria, Karina and Pemberton, Lynn (2008) Retracing Heinrich Barth at the Brunei Gallery, SOAS: using digital technologies to support exhibition development and encourage visitor participation In: The 9th International Symposium on Virtual Reality, Archaeology, and Cultural Heritage.
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The 19th century German explorer Heinrich Barth was one of the first Europeans to recognise the significance and richness of African history and culture. Travelling under the Arabic name Abd el Kerim, he crossed the Sahara desert, over the Air Mountains and into Central Africa, keeping accurate records of his journey. Inspired by Barth's account and fired by tales of a mysterious room containing a trove of ancient artefacts connected to Barth's expedition, artist Julia Winckler journeyed to Niger in 2005. Upon her return, her experience was recorded in an interactive multimedia website, which presented content and narratives from the journey. This paper will present the development of a resulting photographic exhibition at the Brunei Gallery. Through interdisciplinary collaboration, a range of digital and non-digital information, artefacts and technologies were used both to desgin the photographic exhibition and to encourage visitor participation. The paper also reflects on the functionality and successes of these strategies based on informal feedback and observation.
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