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A Viagem - Interactive Video Installation

“A Viagem” (“The Trip”) is an interactive video installation by the VOID group (Carlos Sena Caires + Jorge Cardoso) initially developed for the Procesalia exhibition.

The installation

“A Viagem” is an interactive video installation (see Figure 1) composed of a table with a rounded screen at the center and a toy train track around it. The screen is used to display a video that tells the story of the first train ride of a young child, narrated by the child itself.

The interaction is accomplished by simply moving the toy train in its track. The movement of the train is sensed and a video segment is played. The length of the video segment depends on the distance travelled by the train.

Photo of the installation.

Figure 1. Photo of the installation.

Procesália 2013

This interactive installation was developed originally for the Procesalia 2013 exhibition. Procesalia 2013 was organized by the University of Santiago de Compostela, and curated by Monse Cea. The exhibition is being held at the church of USC, and it features the work of 19 artists. In Figure 2 you can see our installation at the USC church.

Photo of the installation at the USC church.

Figure 2. Photo of the installation at the USC church.


We wanted to create a “magical” interface were it would not be obvious how the computer system sensed the train’s movement. For this we used several hall effect sensors connected to an Arduino and we put small magnets underneath the toy train carriages. In Figure 3 you can see how the sensors were mounted underneath the train tracks. The main logic of the system was then programmed in Max/Jitter to select and play the various video segments.

Sensors used in the installation.

Figure 3. Sensors used in the installation.

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