[ISEA2014] Paper: Je-ho Oh & Chung-kon Shi – A Basic Design for the Interactive Artwork Image Garden based on the Traditional Korean Myth ‘Lady WonAng’


The aim of this study is to propose a new framework for interactive artwork through the Korean archetype. Based on the framework, we proposed a basic design for an interactive artwork called “Image Garden” by applying the Korean myth “Lady WonAng.” In the myth, Lady WonAng bloomed in a wasteland and saved the world, triumphing over adversity through her devotion. To turn the myth into an interactive artwork, we focused on two factors based on the text of the myth: a main activity of the character and a major emotion by development of the myth story by the character. To extract interactive activity factors, we analyzed the text of “Lady WonAng.” In an interactive artwork based on audience activity, the audience becomes a character in the myth and performs the narrative of the myth. Verbs in the text become actions of the character. And we adjust the extracted verbs to an Action Model by Activity Theory, a basic triangle model for analysis of the relationship between the actions of a character (personal) and society. The adjectives in the text are the states of the character. We extract the classifying patterns of the emotions in the myth. And then we adjust the classifying patterns of emotions to the “Pleasure Framework” of Brigid Costello. We completed thirteen emotions through the adjustment of thirteen pleasure categories. Based on the extraction of these two factors, we propose a new framework for an interactive artwork through the archetype. This framework consists of activities and emotions of the audience. The framework focused on the combination of two factors, which create an interactive artwork. The audience has an experience with the archetype narrative through its own actions and feels emotions during the interactive artwork installation. This framework creates an opportunity to produce an interactive artwork to attribute basic design, artwork structure, embodiment of contents and creativity. Using this framework, we propose a basic design for an interactive artwork called “Image Garden” by applying the Korean myth “Lady WonAng” using a narrative approach. The artwork involves an audience member performing in front of a screen as a character in the “Lady WonAng” myth, and the action of the audience member advances the artwork in three stages ‑ Floral initiation, Combination, and Spread (prosperity). The audience member makes the images of flowers bloom  through their own actions as Lady WonAng or as their own character in a wasteland, overcoming trials in an environmental crisis. In summary, we propose a framework to convert the text of the myth into an interactive artwork through character activity and emotion. The audience will have an experience of the world of the Korean myth and experience the meaningfulness of their own actions of making the flower bloom in the artwork, recognizing the devotion of human beings from the value of the traditional Korean story.

  • Je-ho Oh, KR, is a Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate School of Culture Technology in KAIST and researches interactive artwork and performance in the Communication and Interaction Lab. He has written several papers on the subject of interactive artwork focusing on human‑computer‑interaction.
  • Chung-kon Shi, KR, is a Professor at KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology), Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Graduate School of Culture and Technology.

Full text (PDF) p. 252-259