Ara Winki: Life on the Pitjantjatjara Lands tells the story of Anangu: Pitjantjatjara and Yankunytjatjara people living in the northwest corner of South Australia. Through images, films, sound recordings and text, this interactive educational program explores the richness and complexity of Anangu lives. The National Council funded the Pitjantjatjara Council Inc for the Centenary of Federation.
Rightside designed and developed the program around a concept that simulates the environment in which Anangu live. For example:
- navigation through the program requires ‘throwing of rocks’, which recalls the way Anangu announce their arrival at a new location
- the surface of the interface brings to mind the sand on which Anangu trace out the details of a particular story or the path of a journey recently made.
- shadows cast by on-screen objects suggest life lived under a blazing sun. These shadows are synchronised with the computer’s internal clock. In the early morning and late afternoon, the shadows are long and faded. Under a midday sun, they almost disappear.
- the sand also records the actions of the user. Each time a seed falls or a piece of bark is shifted, tracks and impressions are left behind.
Ara Winki remains on permanent display in the Alice Springs Public Library and contains more than 1500 images, 2 hours of digital video footage, some 40 bilingual oral interviews and over 100 Pitjantjatjara language sound files.