Photos from the past
Henri Cartier-Bresson’s Virtual World for the Multimedia Art Museum and TELE2
Interactive virtual reality kiosk with a journey into the past
Client
Multimedia Art Museum (MAMM) - the largest Russian museum of photography and multimedia art. There are constantly up to ten different exhibitions, and everyone will find something interesting for themselves. MAMM also includes one of the most respected schools of contemporary art - the Moscow School of Photography and Multimedia named after Alexander Rodchenko.
TELE2 is a Russian telecommunications company, founded in 2001 by the Swedish group TELE2, who is sponsoring a lot cultural events.
 Project goal
The problem with all photo exhibitions is that quite often visitors simply pass quickly through rows of photos. They look only at the pictures and do not always read the descriptions of the curators, which allow to learn more about the life of the photographer, his philosophy and experiences. We were inspired by hundreds of photos by Henri Cartier-Bresson. You can see some of them below.
Concept
Together with the museum, TELE2 & agency Possible, we decided to give people the opportunity to see the world through the eyes of the cult photographer - Henri Cartier-Bresson. With the help of virtual reality technology, museum visitors themselves took photographs of Moscow during the times of the photographer’s life with a precisely recreated entourage of that time.
Our project partners, Possible, a creative agency, created a 360° film that conveys the atmosphere of Moscow in the middle of the 20th century. We wrote a kiosk and VR program. And most importantly, a button was installed on the virtual reality helmet, exactly the same as on the camera.
Thus, wearing VR headset, visitors teleported to the streets of Moscow of the 30s, stylized as a photo of the master: people are walking along it, vehicles are going, a couple of elderly passersby are talking animatedly about something. The user only needs to catch the moment and take a few photos, which will then be sent to his email or publish to Facebook.
Development
The virtual reality zone had to work for three months. Therefore, a feature of this project was the task to think of a clear interface for users, autonomy of work and durability of equipment and software.
First of all we created panorama from photographer works and add people stylized to this time. You can see this video 360 below.
For this project, we specifically designed from scratch the touch table, used the special anti-vandal cable for fastening a virtual reality headset Oculus Rift CV1, developed software using unity3d and used our watchdog software to monitor the kiosk's performance. And as always, we purchased a few headsets for virtual reality for hot swapping.
But they were not needed. Everything worked for three months without a glitch. Amazing!
On all photos you can see magic button. It was a lot of attempts to put it on CV1. We produced a few buttons including 3d printed button, but the one of USB buttons + controller became the best solution and it was attached to headset and worked 3 months without any problems.
Touch UI was created in TELE2 color scheme. The purpose of this UI was being a wizard which move visitor through whole process.
Until visitor wear the headset nothing happen and headset disabled. When visitor wore headset it is enabling and user see UI and video background inside. Journey is beginning!
Results
Interactive project about these photos in VR, we have implemented the first time in the world. 
The project allowed visitors to dive into the world of Henri Cartier-Bresson, to feel like a legendary photographer and create a series of his own photo works in his style.
The project started even before the opening of the exhibition and became a powerful PR tool that attracted even more visitors to the exhibition. 
The success touched including the sponsor of the TELE2 exhibition - he received many publications in the media and outpaced competitors on such an important territory for the modern brand as multimedia technology and contemporary art.
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