- Sustainability is the prolonging of available tangible and intangible resources, for the generations to come. For instance, tangible resources can be things like fauna and flora… and intangible resources can be things like culture and economy. If we talk about sustainability and iLight, it immediately makes sense to think of energy saving.
- Horizontal Interference by Katarzyna Malejka and Joachim Slugocki
This project caught my attention because it shows a certain level of sophistication in terms of light play. The artists used the reflective property of the material to indirectly show the effects of light. There’s an interesting symbiosis between the complex repetition of the colourful cords and the simple use/projection of light. In addition to that the ‘weightlessness’ attribute of the cords, makes the installation ‘dance’ because of the natural presence of the wind. I believe this installation is an effective design because of the honest interaction between nature and object; nature and men.
Featured Image Source: https://www.ilightmarinabay.sg/Discover/Installations/Horizontal%20Interference
There was an immense leap in technology from back then and now, in terms of connectivity, services, and products but it always summed up to what Jan Chipchase said in his Ted talk. People still carry with them their phone, wallet and key. However, those 3 items are slowly converging into one form, which is the phone. E-banking, apple pay and other services are redefining the way we pay for stuff. We can see this combination too happening between the mobile phone and the ‘keys’. Smart lock that only requires your mobile phone ID to unlock, is gradually making its way into the market. The dynamics are changing with the advance of technology and like Chipchase said, we adapt, delegate to it. Likewise, our centre of gravity is ultimately shifting towards the mobile phone which is increasingly versatile nowadays. With everything becoming digitalized and mobile, we expose ourselves to new threats like cybercrimes. I believe that street will always innovate in a way we cannot expect. Such things can be seen with the mobile phone itself, even though companies are trying hard to make the latter beyond repair, people still find ways to tear it down and correct this. I once bought a repair kit for my own phone and repaired it myself.
The chapter of “Calibrating your cultural compass” by Chipchase was highly relatable, as a foreigner who moved abroad, i had to adapt to the new culture. Likewise, I agree that one can truly understand the culture of the foreign country by being in the actual context and by “going native” like Chipchase would say, make the learning and adaption faster. I never travelled a lot, but I can tell that when I left my country and reached Singapore, I became conscious of the differences and similarities between the two countries and I think that those helped me create an image of the new place.One interesting thing i learnt here was the language that share similar traits with my own.
I would say it is almost a reflex to be more careful and attentive to the new environment and by doing so we absorb lots of intrinsic and extrinsic information about our surrounding but time is a factor that desensitizes this reflex, as mentioned by Chipchase, “…we’ve long since absorbed the information and developed the habit of ignoring them.”.
Reading this chapter made me realize the importance of cultural identity and heritage and how they redefine the way we think and design. Not only did I discover a new culture but I also reidentified myself and felt a stronger sense of belonging to my own culture.
1. Cultural (mis)appropriation is unethical. “…a dip in the contextual-awareness pool can yield insights and inspirations.” Designers deal a lot with visual elements (colors, shapes, forms) and sometimes get ‘inspired’ by cultural heritage which contains lots of those key elements. So is it alright to get ‘inspired’ by other cultures and use those elements as part of a design on the basis of diversity and free expression?
2. Can a foreigner, who have indulged in a particular culture for a long time, fully learn and understand it as compared to a native or is it an ever-learning process for the latter?
Featured image credit: Edwin Koo for The New York Times. https://mobile.nytimes.com/2012/07/01/travel/in-singapore-drinking-in-the-kopitiam-experience.html?referer=https://www.google.com.sg/