Semana Santa -exhibition consists mainly of media (photo, video, sound) representations, which distinguishes it from most ethnografic exhibitions. The media materials were collected by students of anthropology during their field trip to Carúpano in the Spring of 1999.
The aim of the exhibition, as designed by the students (Medialab and anthropology) was to use these materials as the basis for creating an interactive experience that makes use of technology to access the emotional memory and plays with the idea of space. These latter are key concerns in the development of interactive technology systems.
One of the aims of the exhibition has been to use technology to re-create as authentic mood and atmosphere of the other culture as possible. In this context, the use of technology can be problematic: how does one prevent the technology from becoming an exhibition itself?
To solve this the students chose to utilize two approaches: to build the exhibition as theatrical illusion, and to position the user as a guest in the Carúpano settings.
With "theatrical illusion" the team meant that the methods of presentation were hidden from the visitor and technology was used only as a transparent interface layer. The idea was that the interaction should be a natural component of the exhibition, or a discreet element used to augment the physical limitations of space.
The other approach - which represents a departure from traditional interaction design - was to focus on the visitor to the exhibition not as user, but rather as a guest, anxious to see and explore a different culture.