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The Machine Classic

Our original prototype (2012) and predecessor of our most famous system, The Machine To Be Another. The Machine Classic creates a multisensory and deeply immersive experience. Like all our systems, we run it in multiple applications.

The Machine Classic creates the effect of the body transfer illusion for one person: the user experiences the first-person perspective of another person in real-time. The other person acts as a performer, who follows and mimics the user’s movements. The user experiences the embodied perspective of the performer. Two assistants interact with both participants, the user and the performer, guiding their experience and handing them objects. These objects can be of significant meaning to the individuals involved in the experience.

Embodied Narratives @ The Machine Classic

Embodied Narratives is one particular kind of application for The Machine Classic, as well as for The Machine To Be Another. In this setup, a storyteller “swaps bodies” with a user, while listening to the storyteller’s pre-recorded narration, often a personal experience the storyteller wants to share.

The Embodied Narratives set-up can be used in many ways, custom-tailored to the needs, ideas, and aspirations of those who employ the system as it is appropriate to their specific context and situated life-world.

We provide a range of interaction protocols, train, and help people to employ the technology for the sharing of their life-experiences, stories and perspectives. We are always keen to start new collaborations with individuals and their communities, who want to share a notion of their everyday life, experience, and heritage. We aim to expand the definition of ‘normal’ and to provide space for the diversity of human perspectives.

Embodied Narratives @ BeAnotherLab is a creative tool and potential research device suitable for everyday life as well as for professional contexts, e.g. for mediation and conflict resolution, therapy and healthcare, education and training.


2012 – now


Live Prototyping.  Virtual Reality. Embodiment. Immersion. Empathy. Community. Embodied Perspective Shifting. Hacking. Research. Interdisciplinarity. Art. Neuroscience. Technology. Social Innovation.

From our video archive

The Machine To Be Another: An Art Investigation (2014). In English. This is one of our first videos summarising, documenting and conceptualising the idea, prototyping and sudden media interest after our first video “The Gender Swap” went viral.

Embodied Narratives by Youssoupha Diop (2013). In English. Youssoupha performs the Embodied Narrative application in the system we now call The Machine Classic, the prototype of The Machine To Be Another. Youssoupha Diop is a Senegalese dancer who shares a little of his life story with the participants in one of these early explorations of the technology. The video shows part of his 7 minutes performance, recorded in July/2013 at the art and cultural centre L’Estruch in Sabadell, Spain.

Dancing On The Feet (2013). In English. Embodied Dance Investigation with The Machine prototype in collaboration with Liant La Troca Dancers. The video shows parts of the performance in L’Estruch in June 2013. L’Estruch granted BeAnotherLab its first artist residency. Here we developed our original prototype of The Machine through a series of collaborations, such as with the dancers Victoria Martinéz Alés and Cristina Roca, who co-created this experimental application of The Machine.

Talk and presentation (2013) in Spanish of our investigation with The Machine at the art and cultural centre Hangar in Barcelona. The talk was held by Philippe Bertrand, Arthur Tres and Daniel Gonzalez.

Hardware design at the Fab Lab Barcelona (2013). In English. The video shows a brief interview with the architect and digital fabrication expert Anastasia Pistofidou to document the hardware design of The Machine in another residency at the innovation centre and maker space Fab Lab Barcelona.

The Machine To Be A Dancer (2014). Tres, dos, uno…¡ya! Performance and play with the prototype of The Machine during the 10th edition of the Fab Lab conference, the annual gathering of the Fab Lab network. The Fab Lab network is based on an educational outreach initiative from the MIT Media Lab’s Center of Bits and Atoms. The network gathers each year in a different location. In 2014, it was hosted by the Fab Lab Barcelona.