Future through Memory – Chinatown VR Storytelling

Developer: Brendan Azzano
Content Translation (Chinese): Nuo (Neo) Chen
Content Translation (Vietnamese): Victor Hua

Future through Memory is a workshop framework and ongoing interactive documentary (living database) that is co-created with and for the Toronto Chinatown community. Through the participatory workshop, participants (co-creators) take part in knowledge sharing and are introduced to volumetric media capturing techniques (photogrammetry) to create their own site of memory (lieux de memoire) as conceptualized by from Nora’s (1989), in virtual reality.

This project is driven by the act of remembrance and reflection being transformative as well as an act of resistance, exploring the affordances of VR and interactive documentary techniques as methods of civic engagement. The project takes a mixed-methods approach to community-based participatory action research (CB-PARs) to create a decentralized database, where individuals retain ownership and are able to navigate their own agency with their memories.

The first series of the participatory workshop framework was held remotely from October 21, 2020 until December 2, 2020 with members of the Toronto Chinatown community.

You can view the full documentation for the project here.

Workshops were held remotely with all participants via Zoom
My Mother’s Village (鹿湖坝) by co-creator, Joshua Lue Chee Kong viewed in A-Frame
Chang O by co-creator, Arlene Chan, viewed in A-Frame

This project was developed in the Digital Futures Masters program (MDes) at OCAD University. To learn more about this graduate thesis visit dfthesis.com

This project was developed with the support of the Mighty Pen Initiative Fund and the OCAD Graduate Studies Project Grant.

© 2021 Lilian Leung