I understand sustainability as a form of avoidance of the depletion of natural resources, such as oil and coal. Sustainability also means trying to save wildlife as they are connected in the ecosystem to natural resources. There has been a lot of campaigns about sustainability, whether it is to save electricity, save the ocean from garbage, as well as switching to alternative energy resources. A particularly relevant point for iLight installation is the campaign about saving energy and switching to alternative resources. I find iLight is a suitable method to send these two sustainability messages as light installations attract people to come and also interactivity engage people actively which would make a stronger impression for people to bring these sustainability messages home.
I went to iLight festival this year and last year. One of the installations that particularly caught my eye is this:
This installation is called Horizontal Interference. It is basically colourful tapes wrapped around poles in Marina Bay and were shined UV light. The result is a beautiful installation that looks as if the strings are LED strips themselves. This is such a brilliant idea to showcase an art with a minimum amount of energy. The installation itself serves as a good example on how to save energy and still can create something pleasant to look at.
I agree with Chipchase’s point that technology advancement makes us carry less, remember less to owning less. Let’s just talk about mobile phones for instance. In the 1990s, we still carried mobile phones that are so bulky, with an antenna on it. Now, our mobile phone is pocket sized and multifunctional. We do not need to carry another hard copy of maps of the place we would like to visit, we do not need to carry an address book full of contacts of important people. We carry less and as a result, remember less as well. Whenever we want to call someone, we don’t even need to type in their phone number, we just select their name and make a call. As technology progresses, people realise that they do not use all the things they own very often. As a result, the sharing economy is introduced. We are now sharing cars with strangers through sharing apps such as Uber and Grab. The presence of these apps gives us the sense of security we never had before when we simply were not allowed to climb into a vehicle with strangers. Thus, we also own less: having a car is no longer a necessity.
I like the observation of paradox in Afghanistan. With low literacy rate, sometimes technology might not be the answer to improve the level of security. Sometimes people are more trusting when they see with their own eyes. The same thing also happened in a lot of developing countries, such as Indonesia. When the government tries to automate passport application in Indonesia to tackle the problem of scalpers, people are not very responsive to the system change, thinking that there might be a suspicious new corruption technique by the government.