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SBS and Google Bring Stories to Life for Sydney Biennale

Created by SBS’s Digital Creative Labs using technology developed by Google’s Creative Lab, Belongings shares stories and experiences of people who left their homeland, and almost everything they own, in search of a new life in Australia.

Belongings brings together diverse personal experiences through a single common thread: treasured possessions, with participants sharing their stories behind objects from the country of their birth that continue to hold meaning. The project marks the first life-scale interactive installation for SBS, which uses technology that allows audiences to use their smart phone devices to control a multi-user, large scale environment.

Marshall Heald, Director of TV and Online, said, “SBS is committed to exploring issues facing all Australians through innovative storytelling. Belongings draws on the theme of treasured possessions and memories to encourage greater understanding of the challenges faced by those who come to Australia to be resettled.”

For the individuals featured in Belongings, such personal items and memories hold huge significance. Damon Amb from Iran shares the story of his grandmother’s purse, while Lizzy Samba from Papua New Guinea recounts the sense of strength she feels from her mother’s necklace. Sabina Krusevljanin from Bosnia and Herzegovina continues to hold close a backpack she used while escaping Sarajevo and Parastoo Bahrami from Afghanistan, tells how revisiting her passion of creating beautiful hand-beaded baskets helps her look forward to her future. Due to her time living in different refugee camps, Amou Job lost everything she owned, and shares memories that help her to hold on to her past.

Read the full story here:

By Phil Sandberg