Innopixel and the viking museum, Kongernes Jelling, started a project together in 2021, with the goal of bringing back to life the first known king of Denmark, as a 3D character. The king of old would then be live animated using motion capture, making it possible to interact in real time with the king in real time.
Our vision for this project was to explore the use of 3D and AI technology in future interactive exhibitions. We wanted to see how close AI technology has come, and what the possibilities of using it in the world of museums, would mean. How will the audience receive and perceive a live interaction with a 1.000 year old historical character? What will the audience do, and what will they ask? Moreover, how does Gorm the Old look? For obvious reasons we lack photographic evidence, and thus we cannot accurately portray Gorm the old.
The scope of the project only sought to explore and answer these questions, as a preliminary analysis to implementing AI-driven historical characters in museum exhibitions. Secondly, we would evaluate how the interaction was perceived by the audience.
Exploring a new and innovative way for museum visitors to experience and interact with history.
Our first task was to create an authentic 3D character of Gorm the Old. Initially we contemplated making the character in a realistic human texture, so that the experience would feel more realistic. But on the other hand, since no one knows what the old king looks like, we would be unable to accurately portray him. Moreover, the museum already has an established brand image of Gorm the Old, made in a white on black sketch art style.
For this project we learned a great deal about audience interaction and digital storytelling. The audience reacted very positively to the experience, and the cross-platform driven live animation worked very efficiently
We envision the possibility of future museum exhibitions, featuring AI-driven historical characters that visitors can engage in dialogue with.