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Posts in category 'Art'

1 June 2014

“Savages”, an exhibition by Marguerite Kahrl in Torino

KAHRL_aldo_and_mimmo_sm

Now and then we use this blog to announce activities that are dear to us and deserve some promotion. Today it is the exhibition of artist Marguerite Kahrl, who is the wife of Experientia partner Jan-Christoph Zoels. The show opens on Thursday evening in the Alberto Peola Gallery in Turin.

Alberto Peola is pleased to present the second solo exhibition by the American artist Marguerite Kahrl with the gallery.

An unusual invention by any standard. The series Noble Savages by Marguerite Kahrl, inspired by Goya’s Los Caprichos (a series of eighty etchings published in 1799), are busts celebrating monstrous figures, not in marble as might be supposed, but in stuffed hemp fabric, a humble cloth made from a plant that until quite recently was grown in many areas of Italy. Ever monsters, but soft monsters whose ears can be affectionately tweaked, they are in a strange way comforting, rendered homely by the rough, handwoven material. These are domestic monsters, tamed and placed on pedestals a little too slender to suggest solidity, and they observe the world with a blind eye, squinting benignly with their lumpy features and lopsided grins.

Marguerite Kahrl is a neoconceptual artist from New York with a strong commitment to the environment and convictions anchored in the principles of permaculture, a design philosophy that seeks to incorporate ecologies based on observing natural patterns, taking responsibility for the Earth, caring for people, and practicing sustainable development. This holistic attitude allows her to keep together her concern about an ever more complex and overloaded world and artwork that never succumbs to pure activism.

Her soft cloth monsters are in fact the product of research on the properties of industrial hemp, which was once cultivated in many parts of Italy, including the Canavese valley in the Piedmont region of Northern Italy, where Kahrl lives for part of the year. Kahrl was fascinated by this versatile traditional plant, which was once employed for all sorts of domestic purposes, from sheets to nightwear, and even for less well-known culinary uses such as oil and other foodstuffs. Its environmentally friendly properties are many and varied – hemp can even provide a petroleum substitute – and it is no coincidence that she chose it as a metaphor for sustainable living.

But all serious-minded intentions apart, I can only imagine the great time she must have had sewing up her monsters’ features, pulling the cloth this way and that to modify their grimaces. Who are these guys? In actual fact they are not as close to Goya’s Los Caprichos as you might think. His nightmarish creatures are a biting caricature of the moral and social abjection of his day. Kahrl’s Noble Savages are, I believe, closer in spirit to the kind of parody of human failings we find in the work of Honoré Daumier, although they retain the ghoulish appearance of Goya’s irrational and highly hermetic etchings.

As with Claes Oldenberg, hard objects turned soft make people smile; they have lost their edge, taking on the tactile properties of a soft toy, touchable, almost huggable. Vaguely zoomorphic, like Goya’s donkey-headed figures of authority, Kahrl’s savages remain nonetheless curiously aloof, powerful figures that might somehow help us mediate between our reasonable waking world on the one hand, and an invisible irrational world of fantasy and fear on the other.

Perhaps it should not come as a surprise that Kahrl takes her cue from a particular period in European history. Challenging the implicitly current postmodern thinking, the title Noble Savages she confers on her monsters is no mean claim, bringing to the fore all sorts of implications, most of which evoke the Enlightenment or, as the English prefer to call it, the Age of Reason. Not only a reference to Dryden, who first coined the phrase, the name has a very Rousseauesque ring to it. Rousseau was the first of the Philosophes to condemn in no uncertain terms the depravity of his era, asserting at the same time the moral superiority of the savage – she who has not yet been contaminated by the corrupting influence of society but maintains pristine innocence and nobility.

(From the text Soft Monsters in an Age of Unreason by Anna Detheridge)

We hope you can join us for the opening.

31 December 2013

The epistemology of Big Data

ib-3-383x305

In addressing the insecurities of postmodern thought, Big Data falls prey to some of the same issues of interpretation, writes Michael Pepi in The New Enquirer.

More in particular, Pepi points out that “the conditions that generated postmodernism were an intellectual half-step toward the logic that permits the hegemony of networked computing — the era of grappling with Big Data.”. He goes on:

“The ideology of Big Data — that capitalists can and should mine a massive, schema-less trove information that we produce for patterns — is implemented through the discourse of e-commerce, social media, comments, video, and log files. By these means, capitalism rushes to the oracle of difficult-yet-omnipresent data to unlock and replenish the faith in a universal certainty and meaning. Judgment and certainty can then return to art only as networked aesthetic discourse — as the output of Big Data–style analysis. Hermeneutics become statistics. A critic’s opinion can be modelled, predicted, and exposed for its cultural contingencies and biases: Just map their browsing history, show a histogram of authors they cite by age, race, and sex. Analytics permits few myths since narrative scarcely survives reams of data.”

11 November 2013

Two new reports by ARUP

 

Designing with Data
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and ARUP have released Designing with Data: Shaping Our Future Cities, a new report that explores the massive potential role that data could have in the planning and design of our buildings and cities, reports Dexigner.
The report identifies the main approaches to working with data for those involved in designing and planning cities. Better data can offer a deep insight into people’s needs and has the potential to transform the way architects and urban planners design our built environments. This could result in cheaper experimentation and testing of designs before construction begins. It also promises the chance for greater consultation with potential users – speeding up the process, saving time and money and resulting in better and more affordable design.

Museums in the Digital Age
Museums of the future may be filled with 3D-printed replicas, green walls and sensory surfaces, according to a report by Arup (writes Wired UK).
Arup, the London engineering firm behind Japan’s planned Giant Observation Wheel, the world’s first algae-powered building and Thomas Heatherwick’s Garden Bridge, compiled the report Museums in the Digital Age with help from Central Saint Martins’ students on the MA Practice for Narrative Environments course.
The report recognises that museums now have to cater for increasingly disparate visitor groups from an aging population through to the Facebook generation, as well as an expanding global middle class which will give rise to a mass cultural boom. Through investigating the experiential requirements of each, the report suggests a number of changes to future museum design and investments.

4 July 2013

UX and The Museum: Converging perspectives on experience design

ux-and-the-museum-small

Museums visitors are no longer as satisfied with rows of objects on display. They want the objects to tell a story. They want to understand the main message of the exhibit without reading a single block of text.

Mary Oakland, User Experience Designer at The Nerdery, and Shana West, Exhibit Developer at the Science Museum of Minnesota, provide more insight.

17 October 2012

UX articles and dissertations from Denmark

md-top-banner-uk

Mind Design, the Design Research Webzine of the Danish Centre for Design Research, contains a wealth of information, all available in English.

Here are some highlights:

Article
Companies: Design Research Works in Practice
Design researchers are developing new, applicable knowledge together with organisations in the private and public sector. That was the clear conclusion at the mini-conference on the impact of design research that the Danish Centre for Design Research held at The Black Diamond in Copenhagen on 17 September 2012. Here, Rambøll, Bang & Olufsen and other companies shared case stories about how collaboration with researchers is creating value for their organisations.

Article
Using Experience Design to Reach a Broader Audience for Classical Music
How can we use new, digital technologies to make classical music more appealing and accessible – especially for a younger audience? A group of symphony orchestras and educational institutions in Denmark and Sweden have set out to address that question in a large-scale research collaboration that has received funding from the EU’s interregional development fund.

Dissertation
Inviting the Materials Into Co-Design Processes
Materials are important actors in co-design processes. Therefore they should be invited in and assigned roles when co-designers organise projects, workshops or events, for example in the field of service design. That is one of the key conclusions in a PhD dissertation on the role of materials in co-design which Mette Agger Eriksen defended at Malmö University on 13 June 2012.
> Download dissertation (pdf)

Dissertation
Realising the Full Potential of Drawing
Drawing is a language in its own right that holds a large potential for idea development, says Anette Højlund, who defended her PhD dissertation on drawing and creation on 13 April 2012. In the dissertation she examines what she calls the dialogue between the drawing and the person drawing. In this conversation with Mind Design she concludes that the potential of drawing could be utilised far better, for example in visualising issues that reach across disciplinary boundaries.
> Download dissertation summary (pdf)

Dissertation
Hierarchies and Humour in the Design Process
Humour plays an important role in the design process, argues Mette Volf, who recently defended her PhD dissertation Når nogen ler, er der noget på spil (When someone laughs there is something at stake). In her dissertation she explores the design process as social construct. Humour is used, for example, to turn the formal hierarchies on their head.

Dissertation
PhD Dissertation Challenges Traditional Interaction Design
Interaction design can easily incorporate both a body element and an empathy element. This was demonstrated by Maiken Hillerup Fogtmann, who as part of her PhD project developed interactive exercise equipment for team handball players and computer-based play equipment for children. She defended her dissertation, Designing with the Body in Mind, on 23 January 2012 at the Aarhus School of Architecture.
> Download dissertation summary (pdf)

Article
Making Active and Innovative Use of Your Customer Base
Companies are keen to get in touch with their customers and users in order to gain new ideas for products and business potentials. A project headed by the Danish Technological Institute focuses on user types that are potentially valuable for business. The conclusion is that the key lies in getting involved, identifying the company’s needs and involving the right users at the right time in the strategic processes.

Article
Design as Innovation Facilitator
Design-driven innovation in companies can result in both actual product development and the development of processes and business strategies. That was one of the points made at the workshop Design Driven Innovation – Organizing for Growth held at the Kolding School of Design in December 2011. Furthermore, the role of the position of design in relation to the individual company or organisation was emphasised.

7 December 2011

Why service design is the next big thing in cultural innovation

Blackboard
Rohan Gunatillake, the lead producer of festivalslab (the Edinburgh Festival Innovations Lab) gives four reasons why new thinking and tools can produce better experiences.

“Here at the Edinburgh Festivals Innovation Lab, we explore how to best use new thinking and new tools to make the experience of the twelve major Edinburgh festivals even better – for audiences, performers and the festivals organisations themselves. As part of this ongoing work, this week saw the launch of Festivals Design DNA, a project which began life as a simple question: what happens if we approached innovation through the eyes of a designer, and in particular a service designer?

Working together with Glasgow-based service design agency Snook, we have created a set of practical tools to help cultural organisations use the principles and approaches of service design to improve the experiences they produce – supporting the innovation process all the way from ideation to delivery.”

Read article

17 July 2011

European museums and libraries in/of the age of migration

MeLa
MeLa – European Museums and Libraries in/of the Age of Migrations – is a brand new four-year research project, funded by the European Commission under the Seventh Framework Programme, which aims to delineate new approaches for museums and libraries in a context characterized by the continuous migration of people and ideas.

Its main objectives are to advance knowledge in the field and to support museum and library communities, practitioners, experts and policymakers in developing new missions and forms of museums and libraries “in the age of migration”.

During the upcoming four years the team will reflect on the role of museums and libraries, dealing with several complex and crucial issues such as history, socio-cultural and national identity, the use of new technologies and, last but not least, exhibition design and museography.

MeLa intends to define new strategies for the multi/inter/transcultural organization, conservation, exhibition and transmission of knowledge in ways and forms which reflect the conditions posed by the migrations of people, cultures, ideas, information and knowledge in the global world. It aims to evaluate how much these changes can interfere with the physical structures and the architecture of the exhibition places.

The project is coordinated by the Politecnico di Milano, and also involves the Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design (Denmark), the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (Italy), the University of Glasgow (UK), the Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona (Spain), the Musée National d’Histoire Naturelle (France), the Royal College of Art (UK), Newcastle University (UK), and L’ “Orientale”, University of Naples (Italy).

Check also the MeLa project blog and their first newsletter.

17 March 2011

Social media, internet, technology and museums

Museuma
The New York Times has published no less than eight articles at once on the topic of social media, internet, technology and museums. Note the article about the Arduino!

Speaking digitally about exhibits
Museums around the world now use social media for marketing and development efforts, and to strengthen relationships with visitors.

The spirit of sharing
Social media technology has created new opportunities for museums to create interactivity inside and outside of their walls. […] While museums have long strived to be welcoming places as well as havens of learning, social media is turning them into virtual community centers.

Four to follow
Several of the people who help lead some of the most innovative museum Web sites found their path serendipitously.

Stopping to gaze and to zoom
The Google Art Project lets users virtually visit museums, and 17 works are on display in super-high resolution for zooming and marveling.

Smithsonian uses social media to expand Its mission
The museums increasingly use the public to help research and add personal touches to history.

An interactive exhibit for about $30
A tiny programmable computer, the Arduino, has brought the price of interactivity down sharply in the last few years for museums and galleries.

Multimedia tour guides on your smartphone
Museums are increasingly using smartphone apps to enhance the experiences of visitors.

Social media as inspiration and canvas
Mining Vimeo, YouTube and Flickr, artists and museums use social sites to provide a direct link to their audiences.

28 July 2010

Rem Koolhaas, the Hermitage and the design of innovative experiences

Hermitage
On the way to celebrating its 250th anniversary in 2014, the Hermitage museum in St. Petersburg (formerly the Winter Palace of the Russian czars) hired legendary architect Rem Koolhaas to modernize the art museum experience for visitors in a way that both respects the storied history of the Hermitage and also positions the museum as a leader of 21st century innovation. As part of the reconsideration of the museum’s structure and function, Koolhaas is operating under a very rigid ground rule: no new structure will be put up, nor will any part of the existing architecture be modified.

Read article

30 June 2009

August new media gathering in Banff involves Experientia partner

The Makers
Interactive Screen 0.9: The Makers (10 to 15 August 2009) is the 14th installment of the Banff New Media Institute’s acclaimed new media summit, where media makers from Canada and the world gather to reflect on the current state of new media and the shape of things to come. At the end of each summer, producers, investors, and policy makers convene with artists, technologists, and cultural researchers of diverse horizons in the majestic mountain setting of Banff.

“Interactive Screen aims to stimulate the creation of emotionally powerful, creatively inspired, and economically viable new media in Canada and abroad. Part conference, part festival, part peer exchange, part creative workshop, Interactive Screen is always intensive. Over six days of work and play, workshop participants engage in constant dialogue and collaboration through various panels, workshops, and performances. Together, they delve into the creative, social, and business impacts of content, technologies, and networks. Participants invariably come away from the event with new projects and alliances, a refined set of skills, and a renewed faith in the cultural power of new media.

The theme of The Makers will explore the idea of a “society of makers”. This ties in to the “cultural object” — with a focus on those who “make culture”, not those who “own” it.”

Experientia partner Jan-Christoph Zoels is a member of the program faculty, as well as Kate Armstrong, Natalie Bachand, Daniel Canty, Raphaël Daudelin, Andrée Duchaine, Sarah Hamilton, Melissa Mongiat, Jacob Wren, and Adam Zaretsky.

You can still register now.

24 June 2009

Charles Leadbeater essay: The Art of With

The Art of With
Charles Leadbeater explores what the advent of the web, collaborative practice and open source ways of working mean for the arts and art organisations in this excellent 20-page essay commissioned by Cornerhouse.

“The 20 century avant garde was built on the principle: separate and shock. The avant garde of the century to come will have as its principle: combine and connect. The web will encourage a culture in which art creates relationships and promotes interaction, encourages people to be a part of the work, if only in a small way.

This “participatory” avant-garde will not emerged from thin air. It will be fed by the way the web gives new energy to participatory approaches to art, a digital version of a folk culture in which authorship is shared and cumulative rather than individualistic. […]

For the participatory avant-garde a work of art becomes more valuable the more it encourages people to join a conversation around it and to do something creative themselves. Participatory art is based on constant feedback and interaction, people talking, arguing, debating around the art and their views having some impact. “

Highly recommended reading, as its implications go far beyond the arts world.

Download essay

13 June 2009

Bill Thompson, BBC tech art critic at the Venice Biennale

Pixels and paintbrushes
Bill Thompson, back from the Venice Biennale, reflects on digital art and its relationship with technology.

“While there was a lot of interesting art, I saw little that attempted to explore our use of or reliance on technology itself, and the only two pieces I encountered that seemed to have any connection to digital technology for its own sake were rather disappointing as neither was working when I visited.”

Read full story

(via Bruce Sterling)

29 April 2009

Book “The Plenitude” – and extra thoughts on design and ubicomp

The Plenitude
The Plenitude
Creativity, Innovation, and Making Stuff
Rich Gold
Foreword by John Maeda
MIT Press, September 2007

We live with a lot of stuff. The average kitchen, for example, is home to stuff galore, and every appliance, every utensil, every thing, is compound—composed of tens, hundreds, even thousands of other things. Although each piece of stuff satisfies some desire, it also creates the need for even more stuff: cereal demands a spoon; a television demands a remote. Rich Gold calls this dense, knotted ecology of human-made stuff the “Plenitude.” And in this book—at once cartoon treatise, autobiographical reflection, and practical essay in moral philosophy—he tells us how to understand and live with it.

Gold writes about the Plenitude from the seemingly contradictory (but in his view, complementary) perspectives of artist, scientist, designer, and engineer—all professions pursued by him, sometimes simultaneously, in the course of his career. “I have spent my life making more stuff for the Plenitude,” he writes, acknowledging that the Plenitude grows not only because it creates a desire for more of itself but also because it is extraordinary and pleasurable to create.

Gold illustrates these creative expressions with witty cartoons. He describes “seven patterns of innovation”—including “The Big Kahuna,” “Colonization” (which is illustrated by a drawing of “The real history of baseball,” beginning with “Play for free in the backyard” and ending with “Pay to play interactive baseball at home”), and “Stuff Desires to Be Better Stuff” (and its corollary, “Technology Desires to Be Product”). Finally, he meditates on the Plenitude itself and its moral contradictions. How can we in good conscience accept the pleasures of creating stuff that only creates the need for more stuff? He quotes a friend: “We should be careful to make the world we actually want to live in.”

Mike Kuniavsky points out that “The Plenitude Companion“, the parts left out of the MIT Press book, contains Rich Gold’s thoughts on design and ubicomp.

24 January 2009

Mission 2.0: advice for arts & cultural organisations from the social web

Gunatillake
Rohan Gunatillake of NESTA Connect highlights three principal drivers as being behind the new wave of online activity: the low barriers to participation, the thirst for conversation and the power of collaboration.

“Let’s look in turn at the general lesson each of them has to share and then what specific steps arts & cultural organisations can explore to take advantage of the opportunities they present.”

Read full story

20 May 2008

PSFK conference videos

Interactions
PSFK is a global trends and innovation company that also organises conferences in various parts of the world. Videos of over forty presentations at these conferences are now online. My ten highlights:

Allan Chochinov on the Dumbest Smartest Design Problem
At the PSFK Conference New York 2008, Allan Chochinov (Core77) gives an object lesson in strategy and creative thinking. People often assert that real value isn’t in the answer we provide, but in the question we ask. Well, what happens when we ask a supremely stupid question in the hopes of driving innovation? A lot, actually.

Grant McCracken on Pattern Recognition
At the PSFK Conference New York 2008, Grant McCracken (MIT) explains the importance of inspiration, providing a framework for which to gather, monitor and react to trends and ideas in culture and business.

Hugh MacLeod on Wine 2.0
In this 28 minute video, from the PSFK Conference London 2007, among many other things, Hugh MacLeod describes how a small South African wine company shook up an industry with a web 2.0 approach.

Regine Debatty on What Happens When Artists Mess Around With Technology
In this 28 minute video from the PSFK Conference London 2007, Regine Debatty of We Make Money Not Art describes how today’s artists explore electronics, digital bits and even the so-called “emerging technologies” such as biotechnology or nanotechnology; and explains why it should matter to us?

Jeremy Ettinghausen on How To Build Innovation Into A Brand
At the PSFK Conference London 2007, Jeremy Ettinghausen of Penguin spoke on the challenges of reinventing a traditional brand for a digital age.

Mike Butcher on How Digital Media Screwed the Media Business
This 20 minute video from the PSFK Conference London 2007 presents journalist Mike Butcher as he talks about how media owners are on a race for survival against technology companies that put the power to publish in the hands of the ‘audience.’

Niku Banaie Gives Twenty-Five Signals for Change
At the PSFK Conference London 2007, Niku Banaie from Naked Comminications talks about how an understanding of the basic human needs can keep your employees, customers and friends happier, fresher and healthier.

Timo Veikkola on a Vision Of The Future
This 20 minute video from the PSFK Conference London 2007 shows the presentation given by Timo Veikkola, Future Strategist at Nokia, on a Vision of our Future. As design is the reflection of society, how can we envision the future through trends, observation and informed intuition. What values, attitudes and behaviours of today will shape our future?

George Murphy on Brand Experience
At the PSFK Conference New York 2007, George Murphy (Fitch) spokeon creating environments to develop valuable interaction between consumers and brands.

Allan Chochinov on The Perfect Storm
At the PSFK Conference New York 2007, Allan Chochinov (Core77) speaks on whether the ability of the web to share ideas forced a sudden shift towards the consumption of the idea of a product rather than a product itself? How does this impact design and product development?

25 April 2008

Down with innovation

Down with innovation
Rick Poynor, a writer and critic based in London specializing in visual culture, wrote a provocative essay (published in I.D. Magazine), tackling contemporary indulgence with design thinking and innovation:

Design is now so important, it seems, that designers can no longer be trusted with it, and to make it absolutely clear that control has moved into someone else’s hands, design needs to be given a fancy new name. Call it design thinking. Call it innovation. “Everyone loves design but no one wants to call it design,” BusinessWeek’s Bruce Nussbaum informed the readers of Design Observer last year. “Top CEOs and managers want to call design something else—innovation. Innovation: that they are comfortable with. Design, well, it’s a little too wild and crazy for them.” Roger Martin, dean of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, offers this prescription: “Businesspeople don’t just need to understand designers better—they need to become designers.”[…]

Which is more patronizing: to create something you believe in because you think other people might like it too, and just put it out there? (The old, design, way.) Or to study every facet of consumers’ behavior with the intention of filling them with feelings of “insane loyalty” for your client’s products? (The new, innovation, way.)

Read full story

13 April 2008

Videos online of Share Festival 2008 conferences

Share Festival
All videos of the conferences at the Bruce Sterling curated Share Festival that recently took place in Turin, Italy, are now online.

Aside from Bruce Sterling, exhilarating discussants were Massimo Banzi, Julian Bleecker, Donald Norman and Marcos Novak, to name just a few.

Manufacturing: From Digital to Digifab
– Bruce Sterling, Share Festival guest curator, writer
– Stefano Boeri, architect, publishing director of Abitare magazine
Share Festival conferences start – Sterling and Boeri discuss about digital manufacturing. As Bruce Sterling says “on the map there’s more than on the territory”, but it is certainly true that “in materiality i feel confortable as never before”.

Manufacturing Cultural Projects
– Montse Arbelo and Joseba Franco, artists
– Katina Sostmann, researcher
– Kees de Groot and Viola van Alphen, GogBot Festival direction
The development of digital technologies have led to new themes for art and design. Three different European projects present their production processes concerning digital art and design: ArtTechMedia, project to promote digital art, digifab activity of university department of design at Akademie der Kunste Berlin, GogBot Festival, Ducth event focused on creative applications on Robots.

Manufacturing the Streets
– Gianni Corino, researcher at Plymouth University
– Hugo Derijke, artist
– Chiara Boeri, artist
How can artists contribute to design public space and re-define the social sphere? Being part of the shared social network system, art and digital communication are the driving forces behind urban transformation, especially in public areas as museum, galleries, squares and shopping centres.

Dramatic Manufacturing
– Motor, artist
– Mauro Lupone, sound designer
– Andrea Balzola, media theorist and play writer
– Anne Nigten, managing director V2_Lab
Presentation of theatre and research projects concerning the post dramatic patterns of digital storytelling. The theatre is conceived as stage machinery where the actor is the performer and technologies play as characters.
Patching Zone: Manufacturing Interdisciplinary Collaborations
The researcher from V2, Rotterdam, shows us the way electronic art is integrating electronic art studio as a meeting table to enter into new agreements among different subjects.

Manufacturing Intelligence
– Luigi Pagliarini, artist and neuropsychologist
– Franco Torriani, critic
– Pier Luigi Capucci, university professor Università di Bologna
– Gordana Novakovic, artist
– Video by Stelarc, artist
Which is the physical, intellective and emotional relationship between man and machine? A new definition of “mind” that is finally able to be free from the prejudice that intelligence is exclusively belonging to human being, or more generally biological beings, thus assessing that artefacts can take part in this new procedure.

Manufacturing Robots
– Stefano Carabelli, university professor Politecnico di Torino
– Pietro Terna, university professor Università di Torino
– Owen Holland, university professor University of Essex
– Giampiero Masera, Turin Chamber of Commerce
The synthesis is in the title of panel, with “manufacturing robots”, looking at robots, from industrial intelligent machines to androids and to mobile applications of artificial intelligence techniques, as expression of industry, creativity, innovation and art. A perspective perfectly represented by the creative idea of the “Marinetti’s Orchestra“, as a key visiting card for the future of our area.

Manufacturing FIAT 500
– Roberto Giolito (Advanced Design Fiat)
Roberto Giolito, designer of the FIAT 500, tells how is borned the design of this vehicle symbol of the italian industrial manifacture.

A Manifesto for Networked Objects
– Julian Bleecker, professor at University of Southern California
Now objects are on-line too – blogjects , blogging objects. Once “things” are connected to the Internet, they immediately become part of the relational system, thus improving and boosting the connections in the social network, and they finally define a new relationship between presence and mobility in the physical world. With a pervading Internet network objects are now “citizens” of our space, with the possibility to communicate and interact with them.

Manufacturing Digital Art
– Massimo Banzi, Arduino co-founder
– Fabio Franchino and Giorgio Olivero, artists
In the 90s digital art was referring to immateriality, now the society has a more natural relationship with technologies, thus letting what is immaterial to become real, and experimenting new interaction processes between man and machine, that has completely become part of everyday life in the meantime. Manufacturing is also referring to digital art, where such equipment as Arduino and the explosive advent of 3D printers and devices for digital manufacturing led to integrate what is digital into what is real.

Manufacturing Future Designs
– Donald Norman, Director of the Institute for Cognitive Science
– Bruce Sterling, writer
– Luca De Biase, publishing director of Nova24- Sole24Ore magazine
– Gino Bistagnino, university professor Politecnico di Torino
Donald Norman presents his latest book, “Design of Future Things”, where objects, agents of an operating macrosystem, are inter-connected within a pervasive network where relation is more important than function. Relation must be focused on sustainability as well, since a harmful element can infect the whole system.

Manufacturing Consent
– Janez Jansa, artist
– Paolo Cirio, artist
– Antonio Caronia, theorist
Recent facts in contemporary society, dazzled by consumer offers and information pollution – people can experience forms of collective hypnosis, created by a communication system whose cultural machines are turning alienation and difference into agreement, thanks to “emotional” strategies that can mould people’s consciousness: where does communication finish and propaganda start?

From Land Art to Bioart
– Ivana Mulatero, critic
– Gianluca Cosmacini, architect
– Franco Torriani, critic
Presentation of the book “From Land Art to Bioart”, edited by Hopefulmonster Press, by Ivana Mulatero.

Is Life Manufacturable?
– Franco Torriani, critic
– Luis Bec, artist
– Nicole C. Karafyllis, biologist and philosopher
Life is now part of the manufacturing process that may produce hybrid examples widely including the two different aspects: natural living entities and technical products. Biofacts, Zootechnosemiotics, Nanotechnology: a new “parallel biology” is rising, where artificial organisms can count on some living beings’ peculiarities?

Two Architectures: Atoms and Bits
– Marcos Novak, architect
– Bruce Sterling, writer
The architecture theorist Marcos Novak and Bruce Sterling discuss about Novak’s concepts such as “trans-vergence”, “trans-architecture”, “trans-modernity”, “liquid architecture”, “navigable music”, “habitable cinema”, “archimusic”. Architectonic explorations into expanded, mixed and alternative virtual reality.

Share Prize Ceremony
The jury:
– Bruce Sterling
– Anne Nigten
– Stefano Mirti
Winner: Delicate Boundaries by Christine Sugrue

12 March 2008

Creative Britain: New Talents for the New Economy

Creative Britain
The UK government is aiming to make the country a global leader in the arts, media and advertising through initiatives including the creation of thousands of new apprenticeships and the launch of a Davos-style world creative business conference.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown and the culture secretary, Andy Burnham, unveiled the action plan, Creative Britain: New Talents for the New Economy, in what the government is labelling the first-ever comprehensive, state-supported plan to move the creative industries from the “margins to the mainstream of economic and policy thinking” in the UK.

The action plan [which was welcomed by the design industry] outlines 26 commitments for both government and the creative industries to nurture talent, create jobs and to drive the UK’s international competitiveness.

One of the initiatives is to develop a new annual World Creative Business Conference that will act as the “centrepiece” of an international push to make the UK the “world’s creative hub”.

Read full story [The Guardian]
Download action plan (pdf, 1.2 mb, 81 pages)

(via Richard Florida)

2 January 2008

Experiential and sensorial qualities of digital products and services

User-Centered Design Stories
The December issue of the International Journal of Design has recently been published and is strongly focused on the experiential and sensorial qualities of digital products and services.

It is the third issue of this peer-reviewed journal issued by the Taiwan-based Chinese Institute of Design (read more here).

Jonas Löwgren wrote an article on fluency to illustrate the experiential qualities of digital products and services. Fluency “refers to the degree of gracefulness with which the user deals with multiple demands for her attention and action, particularly in augmented spaces where the user moves through shifting ecologies of people, physical objects, and digital media.”

There are also articles on sound as part of the overall experience of a product’s expression, tools for including user-interaction in materials selection, lead-user innovation in the design-based outdoor clothing and equipment sector in the northwest of the United Kingdom, and on artistic inquiry as a means to inform interdisciplinary research.

17 December 2007

Interview with Anthony Dunne and Fiona Raby

Dunne and Raby
Dr. Anthony Dunne and Fiona Raby are faculty members in the Design Interactions department at London’s Royal College of Art and have gained somewhat of a cult following for their provocative and future-scenario-based design work.

As authors of Hertzian Tales and Design Noir they are most responsible for popularizing the idea of Critical Design, where objects are used as tools for awareness and reflection upon issues largely surrounding the implications of existing and future technologies. Their work is in the permanent collections of the MOMA (NY) and the Victoria and Albert in London.

Bruce M. Tharp of Core77 was able to catch up with them at the IDSA/ICSID conference in San Francisco where they presented a recent project that proposes robots with “fragile personalities.” Listen as they discuss the ideas behind their work, their dream project, their feelings about “Critical Design” after more than a decade, the relationship between their professional practice and the work of their students at RCA, and more.

Listen to interview