Brooklyn Historical Society DUMBO: History in Motion

History in Motion encourages visitors to the Waterfront exhibition at Brooklyn Historical Society’s DUMBO location to explore the changing waterfront views of Brooklyn’s past and become active participants, making short movies to capture their travels though time.

Taking in the grand vistas of Brooklyn’s ever evolving waterfront is typically a passive experience. Potion wanted to change that, creating an experience that allows users to step into ten images from BHS’s collection. Using Kinect technology, users are recorded and filtered to match each of the images from the collection allowing them to become part of the art.

Within each image, users visit three individual scenes. In each scene, users are given historical information about the image and are asked to perform an action inspired by the scene. Users can ride the first ferry to connect Brooklyn and Manhattan, walk the narrow footbridge builders used while constructing the Brooklyn Bridge, and muck around in the marshy swamp land of historical Gowanus.

Users’ actions are stitched together and played back as a short movie complete with soundtrack. These movies can be accessed online so users can relive their adventure or share with family and friends.

Check out an example:

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