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Omertà

INTERACTIVE ART

THE PROJECT

This is an interactive installation I made with a team of colleagues from different backgrounds (video, sound and interaction design) while I was student at IED Milano. The aim of the project was to make people reflect about omerta and its dynamics, specially after the Hollywood's sex abuse scandals in 2017, a painful truth revealed by a multitude of women.
Omerta (derived from the italian "omertà") is a word used for indicate the behavior of mafia-type criminal organizations: the importance on silence, non-cooperation with authorities and non-interference in the illegal actions of others.

We based the interaction on the principle of the critical mass, namely the idea that things can change when more person, all together, try to fight agains someone or something. The final result is a projected video that progress only when four different people interact together and at the same time.
We created four columns with a conductive panel at the top. When a person is touching one of these panels the projected video progress through a loop and so on until another person touches the second panel and a new loop begin.

colums

At the end, when all the panels are activated, a voice starts to tell what omerta is and the girl, victim of her own silence, starts to escape from passivity and tastes the feeling of beeing free. Users, thanks to their interaction, are the makers of this change.

Technically speaking I used a touchboard to detect all the users’ input and then data were processed using Max Msp. The video was projected on two cloth of lycra, a synthetic fiber that gave the effect of blur and mystery. Using Aftereffects, we created four lines projected on the floor as a feedback for the user when he touches the panel.

"Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth."
- Oscar Wilde