The Nakhodha and the Mermaid is a groundbreaking 33 minutes VR/XR experience that uses spatial audio and 360° that takes place inside a physical dhow installed in a landmark 16th century building on the Island of Mozambique that once served as a place where people were sold to slavery.
By using documentary storytelling and blending sea chants and songs, this VR/XR experience draws attention to the imminent threat of rising sea levels (20 cm up to the year 2023) that can destroy the fishing communities around the isle.
The unique immersive experience showcases the initiation process of a traditional Indian Ocean sailor into a Nakhodha, a sea wisdom keeper, and his love affair with a mermaid. The magical realism is brought to life through video projection, evocative spatial music and sounds and 360° headset and creates an unforgettable and emotional experience for users.
The Nakhodha and the Mermaid expertly celebrates cultural traditions, while transmitting intergenerational knowledge, and using immersive technology in order to create an unprecedented “immersive drowning experience" to warn about the effects of global warming and instill urgency of protecting Swahili maritime cultural heritage before it disappears. This project has been funded by the Sound Connects Fund ACP-EU Culture.
This immersive experience will be launched in June 2023.
Yara is an African creative female director based on the world heritage Island of Mozambique. Her work reflects her questionings about contemporary Africa and through storytelling she wants to share her vision of the world, using immersive technologies to merge sound, film, tradition, culture and environment while engaging with the community and promoting local change and resilience.
She has directed 4 films, featured in festivals around 40 countries and on international television channels. In 2013, Yara was one of the 6 selected film directors to direct and produce a film for Al Jazeera television.
Her creative work intersects arts, culture, environment and sustainable community development, while training and immersing young people in artistic and cultural hubs.
Chimène is a dancer, theatre performer and cultural manager.
She was Pro Helvetia‘s production coordinator and the artistic director of Centro Cultural Scala in Maputo and Centro Tofo in Inhambane, Moçambique.
She is currently the general coordinator of Wixutta knowledge center, in the Island of Moçambique.
Communication Scientist and Strategist
with over 15 years expertise in image building and creative storytelling, Daniel is a communication strategist, documentary filmmaker, historian, digital marketer and political scientist.