Our Speaker: Despoina Sampatakou
Storytelling and VR: breathing life to people of the past
Despoina is a PhD student in Digital Archaeology at the University of York under the supervision of Dr. Colleen Morgan. Her research focuses on the impact of storytelling and Virtual Reality on the wider public when communicating archaeological data. Her background is in Bronze Age Archaeology, Heritage Management and burial customs.
The aim of my research is to understand how to create more impactful interpretive experiences of the past as well as how to convey life histories through embodied interpretations of archaeological remains such as skeletons and materials.
The research will consist of two main parts. Firstly, three life histories based on individuals buried at a Bronze Age cemetery in Greece called Grave Circle A will be analysed and described in detail.
The second part of the research presents these life histories through three different types of storytelling. The first life story will be a straightforward textual narrative. The second will be an interactive story created using Twine, which will give the user the freedom to explore different storylines and outcomes. The last one will be created and presented to the users through a VR model in a 3D environment.
The research is important as, despite the fact that there are a lot of stories about people in past created both by archaeologists and novelists, there is limited research on their impact on the wider public, which is the target of these stories in the first place.