The Old Drugstore
New digital installations in The Old Town

The Old Pharmacy is a historic building from 1571, which lies next to a  herbal garden in the Old Town in Aarhus. The building is the oldest of its kind, with an exhibition of a complete pharmacy interior –  it has now been brought to life with digital installations that inform about herbs and their medical abilities. Inside the pharmacy the visitor is met by an interactive projection of a pharmacist in historical costume, personified by actor Nis Bank-Mikkelsen. When you click on one of the active areas in an open book, he tells how illnesses can be cured with herbs.The herbal garden is fitted with a touch screen, where you can explore the 10 medicinal plants with explanatory text and videos about the plants.

No Parking has supplied the digital stories, complete with technical solutions to the museum. For the Old Pharmacy, we have designed a stylized book, constructed of laser-cut plywood with recessed touch areas in aluminum, where visitors can interact with a projection of the actor. When you touch one of the areas in the book, the pharmacist tells about 15th. Century treatments for various diseases. When he mentions a medicinal herb, a spotlight that illuminates  historical drawers and jars in the pharmacy. The book uses capacitive sensors that can perceive the electrical voltage in the visitor’s fingers.
The script for the pharmacist’s stories was made in collaboration with the museum. The museums tailors then became busy sewing an original costume for the filming, which was produced at No Parking’s film studio in Copenhagen. Filming for touch screen in herbal garden was performed with the museum’s talented gardeners, who talk about medical herbs and show how the plants are grown. On display are also animations that show the plants growing up, from the buttons you press at the bottom of the screen.