Interaction Design Workshop 2010 Interaction Design Workshop 2010

Workshop Series on Interaction design

The Brief

At ever increasing speed, we are reshaping our evolution and destiny, thereby controlling the evolution (or extinction) of other species and destiny of this planet. We are geo-engineering our way out of the climate crisis, into perhaps darker disasters, whilst creating entirely new species in our biotechnology-labs. Science offers a refuge for uncertainty and is slowly becoming a new religion. However, science also feeds an exponential technological progress that is leading us to the edges of singularity; we’re on the evening of a revolution and tomorrow is dark and uncertain.

We are presented with tales of a natural world out of control: viral epidemics, tumbling asteroids, ecological catastrophes, droughts and mass-extinction of species. And to protect ourselves, we build capsules around us: clutter together in mega-cities, hide in higher skyscrapers or faster cars with more airbags; thereby creating even more a misfit between our biological beings and the technology that surrounds us. We are left anxious in front of our high definition widescreen television, consuming from the couch the media’s eager broadcasting of floods, crimes, pandemics, rape and earthquakes. But perhaps it aren’t only those colossal catastrophes that chronicle most accurately life in the twenty-first century city. Because all this subjective violence is just the most visible half of a pair that also includes objective violence “or the often catastrophic consequences of the smooth functioning of our economic and political systems.”

In this workshop, you are to explore the invisible cities of Split. Slip suggestively between the real and the imagined to tell the tales of different disasters that make up this city: from minor urban disasters to necessary catastrophes. You are to use the violent potential that is design to build these narratives and create public interventions in the city.

Placing voices

The Brief

The city of Split will be the context for design explorations around the theme of urban ecology. Urban inhabitants are heterogeneous, made of multiple differences mobilized through human and nonhuman becomings. By focusing on becomings, the workshop will address the co-fabrication, the (ongoing) doing of urban ecologies; making things matter, a process that implies all manner of relational work.

In practice, we will ask: To whom and to what are we giving voices to in this city? How are these, in their turn, materialized? How do these voices conform or participate in Split’s urban ecology? Through its proposals and interventions, Placing Voices will craft nonlinear (hi)stories (geological-biological-linguistic). It will focus attention on articulating existing ways in which values are set and communicated officially, and unofficially, by (re)designing systems for altering existing perceptions or introducing new ones. The resulting design proposals should be targeted at specific stakeholders and actors to re-experience the city and highlight its urban ecology from alternative perspectives