California College of the Arts, San Francisco
Xiaoxiao Zeng, San Francisco
Tianhang Zhang, Syracuse
JD Beltran, Maria Mortati, Scott Minneman
Zoos are a valuable resource in educating the public about habitat, biodiversity, and environmental issues affecting wildlife. However, zoos unavoidably separate animals and humans, confining the former to an imitation of their natural habitat, while the latter get to experience “wilderness” from a position of absolute safety. The interactive project Friendship Jungle teaches users how to communicate with gorillas using body language and sounds that the gorilla can understand. The 3D gorilla on the screen interacts with users based on their movements, which are captured by a tool called Kinect.