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Immagine del monte del Purgatorio estratta dal cortometraggio realizzato da ETT sotto la direzione di Federico Basso e con la voce narrante di Francesco Pannofino, che è proiettato nella nuova sala "Anteo Rai Cinema Spazio Realtà Virtuale", primo spazio in Italia attrezzato per la realtà virtuale, nel Cinema Anteo di Milano

Genoa, 28 June 2023 – ETT S.p.A, the Genoa-based creative and digital industry, is the only Italian company admitted to the eighth edition of the International XR-Metaverse Conference. This, the most important global event in the field, focussing on the study of immersive reality, is organised by the International Association of Immersive Technology Innovation – IAITI, and held in Las Vegas from 28 to 30 June. On the 30th, Adele Magnelli, Alessandro Cavallaro and Federico Basso, respectively ETT’s international project manager, content curator and head of video productions, will speak on immersive technologies. They will present The Divine Comedy VR: Purgatory, an immersive journey to an extensive international audience. The short Virtual Reality film, based on the second cantica of the Poem, was made by ETT and distributed exclusively by Rai on the Raiplay and Rai Cinema Channel channels, like the earlier first production of Inferno. 

The International XR Conference brings the digital industry and the academic world together to actively discuss immersive technologies relative to recent developments in Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), the Metaverse and the application of AI in the construction of virtual spaces. Joining a panel of speakers from various countries, Adele Magnelli, Alessandro Cavallaro and Federico Basso will explore the artistic objectives that inspired the creation of this immersive work and how the project aims to transform the traditional approach to literature and, more generally, to cultural heritage, through a new visual and narrative language. Viewers may immerse themselves in a setting faithfully aligned with the Poet’s description where, accompanied by the narrative of actor Francesco Pannofino, they identify with Dante himself.   

“The innovative aspect of the project – said Adele Magnelli – is the link between the strict adherence to the Poet’s verses and the use of technologies that include not only virtual reality but also computer graphics and post-production supported by artificial intelligence. The aim of all this is a new approach to literature; broadening the boundaries of an enthusiastic public and intensifying enjoyment of the work. Therefore, thanks to solutions developed by ETT, the production takes on an unprecedented cultural and educational value that could lead to a new understanding of the Cantica”. “Over the last few years – declared Giovanni Verreschi, CEO of ETT S.p.A. – the worlds of culture, entertainment and technology have undergone a profound transformation in the phases of production, creation and use. This has made it possible to take advantage of the latest technological achievements for a new dimension of audience presence and immersion, giving the audience the sensation of being “inside” the story, even for some complex and not readily accessible content such as art, history and literature. Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) help evoke emotions and imaginations unknown in classic cinematic narratives. Virtual Reality is expanding the traditionally offered experiences, used by designers and directors, towards new experimental horizons. Cinematographic language is in the uncompromisingly new context of immersive storytelling”. 

On the graphic level, Purgatory appears in all its grandeur as a rocky mountain standing in the ocean at the centre of the southern hemisphere. It pays particular attention to the scientific reconstruction of the landscape and imagery. The short film respects the transposition of Dante’s original text while presenting a new and creative visual interpretation of Purgatory based on the philological reading of the tercets. Focusing on the power of images as a communicative medium, Adele Magnelli will outline the project origins, highlighting how ETT considers dialogue between technology and creativity as a decisive element for the development of immersive realities. Through the creation of a sense of all-encompassing presence, The Divine Comedy VR brings the viewer closer to Dante’s work in a new way, offering a sensory journey into the world of Purgatory, going as far as the Terrestrial Paradise.

ETT’s proposal in no way attempts to substitute traditional reading or learning but initiates new fields of experimentation, paving the way for the integration of cinematographic tradition with new methods of narration capable of combining physical immersion and deeper emotional involvement. As Adele Magnelli will explain at the International XR-Metaverse Conference, the widespread opinion in cultural heritage research holds that the use of Mixed Reality – the merging of real and virtual environments – has enabled the redesign of service proposals to create unique learning and entertainment experiences. It is a fact that a combination of advanced technology and innovative storytelling can increase visitor attendance and participation. In Las Vegas, Adele Magnelli will show an American audience a project not limited to innovating the experience of artistic and cultural involvement but one that can also be used in education.