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Take a Night Walk for Edinburgh now!

The Creative Informatics team have collaborated with Edinburgh’s Fruitmarket Gallery to revamp Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller’s extraordinary AR experience Night Walk for Edinburgh for current times.

Originally commissioned by the Fruitmarket Gallery as part of the 2019 Edinburgh International Festival, Night Walk for Edinburgh is a 50 minute film that takes you on a walk through Edinburgh’s Old Town with headphones and a mobile device. Following Janet Cardiff’s voice and walking in her footsteps, participants are led through the backstreets of the Old Town, unravelling a disjointed tale – part game-playing, part surrealistic poetry, perhaps even a murder mystery – layered with history, invention and memories.

In order to experience the walk, members of the public were originally given headphones and devices pre-loaded with the film on arrival at the Fruitmarket. However, due to social distancing measures, this was no longer a viable option for experiencing the walk in 2020.

The Frutimarket approached the Creative Informatics team to help them find a way to enable people to safely experience Night Walk for Edinburgh on their own devices, while ensuring that the quality of the film and audio were preserved, people were encouraged to do the walk, rather than watch the film at home, and numbers were restricted to avoid too many people doing the walk at the same time.

To Creative Informatics team have worked with The Fruitmarket Gallery to develop a bespoke app that lets people download a HD version of the film on their own phones that can only be watched when a user is in a specific location at an allocated time. After registering for a specific time slot on Eventbrite, ticket holders can enter their order number on the app, and this determines when and where the film can be watched.

Chris Speed, Director of Creative Informatics, said: “It’s been a pleasure to help Fruitmarket Gallery with an app that allows them to continue to give access to this extraordinary piece of art. Weaving through the Old Town with Cardiff and Miller’s layered ‘reality’ is more powerful than ever as our relationship with people, the streets and closes continues to change.”

Standard tickets will only allow app users to watch the film within 15 minutes of their assigned time slot, and within 1 km of the start location in Edinburgh’s Old Town. ‘At home’ tickets are also available for those unable to undertake the walk to watch the film without time and location restrictions. The app is available for download on Google Play and the App Store.

You can take part in Night Walk for Edinburgh now and until the 27th of September. Visit the Fruitmarket’s website for more information and to book your walk! For more information about this project, contact the Creative Informatics team at creativeinformatics@ed.ac.uk.

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