Hidden Memories: A smartphone audio walk about the Revolution

We launched the smartphone-app of our project: Hidden Memories about the Revolution on Maidan, Kyiv, Ukraine.

The “Hidden Memories” app enables users walking on Maidan to put on headphones and listen to twelve personal stories illustrating different experiences and opinions regarding the events on Maidan in 2013/14. Using GPS, the app knows the user’s location, linking audio scenes to the actual places where they might have happened.

From 19th of February 2018 the app will be available for download on any Android smartphone.
Beginning in April 2017, the Hidden Memories project, organized by CRISP (Berlin), Center for Dialogue and Reconciliation "Iskra" (Mykolaiv) and xm:lab (Saarbrücken), brought together a group of young Ukrainians from all over the country for a series of workshops. The goal was to create a piece of documentary art that would help to foster empathy between conflicting points of view on the Revolution. The resulting mobile app will be launched on February 19th in Kyiv.

From a body of over forty oral history interviews conducted by the project participants, the group distilled and composed twelve protagonists with stories that capture a broad spectrum of possible stances towards the events on Maidan in the winter of 2013/14.

These twelve stories were then recorded with professional voice actors in four languages - Ukrainian, Russian, English and German - and expanded with an original musical soundtrack.

The final product of the project is a novel form of storytelling through technology, and an exercise in empathy through change of perspective: A smartphone application that sends listeners walking on Maidan Nezalezhnosti on a journey to the square's recent past, carried by the multiple voices of supporters and critics of the Maidan revolution from different walks of life, getting to know and better understand a wide range of related arguments and emotions.

This way, project coordinators and participants are hoping to stimulate communication and reconciliation between large factions of the Ukrainian people that have been divided by their perspectives on the country's recent history, helping to bridge a painful gap.

Hidden Memories is funded by the German Federal Foreign Office and The Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation.

The Android version of the app is available for free in the Google Play Store, the iOS version is to follow soon.