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Posted by Sebastian on Nov 22, 2007
Time in Objects is a speculative design project by Louise Klinker and Anab Jain that plays with the notion of time.
Louise and Anab looked at various everyday objects such as books, pens and cigarettes asking what would happen if we were made visibly aware of the time it takes to consume them.
What happens if page numbers in books are replaced by the time you're supposed to take reading them? Or if you could order a 10 or 30 minute pint at the pub?
The theme of the project resembles the practice of Chris Speed who in 1999 created WordTime, which is a simple control panel that allow users of Microsoft Word to calculate when their work will be done. Users simply enter the amount of words they anticipate producing and WordTime calculates when the work is completed.
Posted by Sebastian on Oct 14, 2007
Bureau of Workplace Interruptions is a time-stealing agency who work with employees to interrupt the flow of their workday. The purpose is to invigorate some of the time people spend at work in order to create new experiences and possibilities outside the flow of capital.
So, if you're an employee who needs a break from the daily routines you can apply for an interruption at the bureau's website. Subsequently, they will do their best to find the right interruption for you.
When planning the event, they'll take your occupation, work hours, and the means by which they can contact you into consideration. The interruption can take place via mail, email, telephone or, if you're lucky, a workplace visit.
Don't worry. The Bureau of Workplace Interruptions will strive to keep their actions invisible to your employer!
One of my favorite art shows this year was Radical Lace & Subversive Knitting at the Musuem of Arts & Design in New York. A timely exhibition of work by international artists using fiber in unexpected and unorthodox ways.
Within the past 5 years or so, knitting has experienced quite a renaissance and it is no longer viewed as something of the 70's. One of the reasons for this comeback is the fashion cycle which traditionally brings dead things back into life sooner or later. Another reason is the possibilities and inspiration that new technologies provide.
An example of the latter is the knitting project Schalalala! by Rüdiger Schlömer (not included in the aforementioned exhibition).
Schalalala! is a fan-scarf project inspired by social media and remix culture. The project addresses the lack of flexibility and individual freedom when supporting a sport club. Either you are for team A or team B, you are with or against it.
In response to this situation, Rüdiger created a web based interface where people can re-mix existing club scarves in order to meet the individual need for flexibility, customization and fashion.
Schalalala! is primarily a digital project but people are encouraged to use the website as inspiration for knitting their own multi-fan-club scarves.
Related entry: Generative Knitting
Hema is a popular Dutch department store chain selling low pricing housewares and other items made by Hema itself.
According to the media foundation Mediamatic in Amsterdam, Hema is the most public manifestation of Dutch culture. Some countries find their identity in churches, the Dutch identify with Hema; a living monument of practical colorful clearness with value for the money.
And so, in relation to a project on Arabic-Dutch art, design and culture, Mediamatic launched the competition 'El Hema' that explore what an Arabic version of the Dutch cultural brand Hema look like. What would the typography look like? What items would they sell? What would be the opening hours?
People are invited to submit their ideas and designs for El Hema products and concepts. The best submissions will be included in an exhibition and the best overall idea will receive an award.
Originally, the real Hema was not too happy with the idea and threatened to take legal action but apparently they changed their minds and are now part of the jury that will select the best design(s). If you can't beat them, join them.
Posted by Sebastian on Jul 16, 2007
AVANT-GARDE DATING is a new experimental dating service for artists.
In contrast to traditional dating services, the primary aim of AVANT-GARDE DATING is not to match artists looking for a romantic/sexual relationship but to match artists who are interested in investigating issues associated with relationships.
In order to apply, individuals must explain how they will explore the conventions of monogamous love, challenge the idea of artistic collaboration and/or explore one of the other numerous stereotypes of human pairing.
Based on the application, the Dating Board will match artists with each other and three outstanding 'couples' will be rewarded a 1-week exhibition during the Art Forum in Berlin (Sep-Oct 2007) to further explore the concept of human partnering.
AVANT-GARDE DATING is a project by Wooloo, an artists-run organization based in Berlin, Germany.
Semi-related: GayMobile - another experimental community service.
Last November, the Swedish designer Samir Alj Fält organized the interactive design project Ultravåldsdesign (~ ultraviolent design), in which he examined the relation between creation and destruction.
Inspired by the somewhat innocent and exploratory side of children's destructive nature (ripping stuff apart, kicking things), Samir invited 6th grade students from a local school to participate in a series of workshops.
Together they vandalized objects and materials to explore how aggression and frustration can be used in a constructive way, and to see if there are ways of creating design that can not only resist violence, but can also be improved by it.
The project was realized in collaboration with Tensta Konsthall near Stockholm.
Some of the thoughts of Ultra Violent Design can also be found in the project 'do-create' by Kesselskramer and Droog Design, which took place 7-8 years ago - I am thinking particularly of Marijn Van Der Poll's work do hit.
Last week, the brilliant Danish TV program den 11. time (11th hour) featured the bizarre story about a local DJ - Kid Kishore - who momentarily changed his artistic name.
It is quite normal that musicians copy each other's music but when Kid Kishore decided to copy the name of Trentemøller, a successful Danish electro-musician, things got interesting.
According to Kid Kishore, he merely took the artistic name because he liked it, not to hijack the identity of Trentemøller. However, that is exactly what happened. Soon after changing his MySpace profile to Trentemøller, Kid Kishore got an invitation to play at a club who assumed he was the original one.
Consequently, on the night Kid Kishore turned up to play he got rejected at the door. Although he never really claimed to be the real Trentemøller, but just a different Trentemøller, the police was called as the club apparently mistook him for a troublemaker. Fortunately the officers seemed to recognize the irony of the situation and nothing further happened.
To avoid confusion Kid Kishore is no longer using Trentemøller's name.
Related: Identity corrections carried out by the The Yes Men.
• Path to a video clip of the show In Danish
Aram Bartholl is a german artist renowned for making physical abstractions of the digital world, particularly game-worlds.
One of Aram's not-to-be-missed performances is inspired by the popular computer game World of Warcraft (WoW).
In WoW, the nickname of the player's avatar is constantly hovering above the head of the player so that the identity is visible for everyone else in the game.
Aram took this little feature out of cyberspace to see how it would look if people's names would float above their heads in the physical world too.
WoW has been performed at different locations around the world. Luckily, it is well-documented.
Posted by Sebastian on Jan 28, 2007
Why do we hold on to things long after they have 'expired'?
This question is the central theme in an art project called Best Before, which explores the relationship that people have with objects they no longer use.
To get people to show and talk about these objects, the artists behind the project placed plastic bags on the doorsteps of homes throughout New York city.
People were asked to fill the bags with expired items and to describe how and when each item was acquired, when and why it expired as well as the location of the item since its expiration.
The project was exhibited last year at the photographic archive in Manhattan. Fortunately, it is fully documented online as well.
Credits: Asuka Yamaguchi, Fotini Lazaridou-Hatzigoga & Elaine W. Ho.
Posted by Sebastian on Jan 21, 2007
The price of a wedding gown is somewhat disproportionate compared to the amount of time it is actual being used. More often than not, it is worn only once where after it lives the rest of its life in a closet.
A solution to this problem is the Disposable Wedding Gown designed by Tuija Järvenpää, a Finnish designer who is more interested in creating disposable products than in making them permanent.
The wedding gown is made of shiny translucent white paper and can be styled with various prints, ornamental cut-in patterns and folds. It is designed for one-time use only, thus perfect for events like weddings. After the event, it can be recycled or thrown away.
The disposable wedding gown was introduced in 2005 in conjunction with an exhibition at the Kunsthalle Helsinki. Apparently, during the event a group-wedding took place in which all brides wore disposable gowns!