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I was inspired to think about types of public transportations found within cities. These are examples of the different types of buses you can find. Considering a place that is constant but mobile - what if buses could be designed as a type of home? Or place of work? Like a City of Camper Vans and Buses.

The wires catalog began as a study of wires, entanglements, and structures, but soon after making this study I started to see wires as a type of window - a sort of frame to look through. These are the many examples of wire framing that can be found in cities. Some seem tighter and mesh like and others seems loose and easy to see through.



This catalog is a study on the connection between stairs and social class. As I documented stair cases I started to notice that each example looked different depending on location. An expensive hotel or whether I was at a hidden stairway in LA next to a homeless encampment each one had a uniqueness to it. Not only are they a connection to different levels, but they serve as a connection to status within the city.

City Excursion Takeaways


I found myself inspired by stairs. I saw stairs as a type of bridge to different interfaces. Stairs can be a place for gathering, community, and listening. Stairs can be a place for tourism and people watching. Stairs can take you to monuments, vistas, history and culture. Stairs can be behind bars, tucked away leading to places unknown. Stairs can also appear different depending on social class. Stairs can be political.

I found glimpses of what I like to think of as the guts of a city. Wires sticking out, weird plastic cylinders with numbers labeled on them. A metallic skeleton with attachments everywhere. I wonder what the a city would look like if everything else was stripped away except for the wires and guts that light it up at night.

I remember as a kid playing with my toys and pretending to build cities out of them. Sometimes I'd make homes for my toys out of dirt, legos, twigs and leaves. Little cars going through tunnels built out of sand, action figures scaling tall furniture imagined to be buildings. 

Imaginary City Drawings:

City of Bus Life



The City of Bus Life is composed of buildings made from buses. After fossil fuel is banned this type of technology will become obsolete. The remaining bus shells could make cozy homes, offices, and work places for many.

City of Transitions


The City of Transition is made from photogrammetry scans of stairs and bridges. In this city the people are constantly in a state of transition as they are moving down, up, and across to get to where they want to go. The city is fragmented as if it was permanently in a state of loading, the ethos of the city.



City of Disrupted Views


The City of Disrupted Views is constantly in a state of flux. Its citizens are always on the move as they slide from wire to wire. The city cannot function without the kinetic energy as it fuels the city with electricity. Although everyone is on the move and seemingly headed somewhere their view of a destination is disrupted by wire and movement.


Piecing Projects Together...

Collaborating Designers: ALAN AMAYA, ALISON CHANG, GUOWEI LYU, RONGDA TAO, ZEYU WANG, QIANYUE YUWEN

The Eye of Providence City, named after the "All-Seeing Eye of God,” to symbolize a benevolent order; Maintained by the eye machines who keep a watchful eye over the lower corners of the city. The all seeing machines are not allowed in the upper half of the city because residents who live closer to the "Great Architect Of the Universe" are least likely to commit crimes...so they say.



This photograph was taken by one of the all seeing machines in the lower level of the city. It depicts the development of the city. Made from old transportation vehicles called buses. Residents who are considered working class live in the lower level people here are always under the watchful eye.



This image taken by a passing residents show the way in which machines detect suspicious behavior. Whispering is considered suspicious and the machines work to identify people who are to be kept under heavy surveillance. This couple has been missing since this photo was taken.




The eye machines follow residents throughout the city, always knowing where and what they are doing. This is designed to control citizen behavior and prevent actions that may be considered a threat to the ruling class.

Project Brief: 
Create a composite city, one 'megalopolis' group drawing that combines elements from all members' previous work. Consider: How do you organize yourselves, and plan workflow? What tools do you use? How might you intertwine contributions from different group members to create your composite? For example, the group might decide to use the underlying structure of one person's project as a foundation, then build on (and complicate) this by adding details and elements from other projects. Or you might decide on a new organizational form or idea.




Brief


Design a technological something (e.g., wearable, device, tool, space,software, infrastructure) that gives YOU, or one of your peers, a special ability or superpower. The final deliverable is a prototype or prop, brought to life through demo, performance, enactment, and/or visual narrative.


Project Statement


Digital Altar is designed as a place to find creative power. What motivated me to make it is to discover a new understanding of practice and ritual through the process of making. As a creative, I sometimes myself confronted with creative blocks. A lot of times this is due to stress and anxiety that tend to inhibit my creative ability. Therefore I wanted to create a power that uses the blocks to gain access to something new and lean into it. The way that I have interpreted super power is rooted in spiritual and ritual practices. Having a consistent practice like meditation or art, I can gain a deeper relationship with the self and gain access to new abilities that strengthen the practice.

I embarked on a ritualistic path of making, to put this idea into practice. I made 3D digital altars, made from GIFs; ingredients from the internet, and then I made a 11.5x11.5 acrylic cube, with a laser cut pixelated texture, as a relic to offer the altar. By offering a 3D GIF to the altar the system becomes circular, and therefore regenerative. Creating a regenerative cycle between the physical and the digital is a new practice I am proposing through this project. I am inspired by a quote by Alfred Gell from his essay, “The Technology of Enchantment and the Enchantment of Technology,” where he makes the comparison between art and religion, “Just as anthropology of religion commences with the explicit or implicit denial of the claims religions make on believers, so the anthropology of art has to begin with a denial of the claims which objects of art make on the people who live under their spell, and also on ourselves, in so far as we are all self-confessed devotees of the Art Cult.” (Gell 42). Which makes me wonder about the properties of art that ensnare an audience to it. Gell goes on to argue that the Technology of Enchantment is based on the technical process which casts a spell in order to see the real world in an enchanted form. As such I was interested in investigating the technical process that art uses in order to cast a spell, such as gestalt properties which pull in observers by exploiting characteristic biases of human visual perception which work to find patterns. I wanted to work with GIFs because they have a circular pattern, and hypnotic gestalt properties. I invite others to join in on the ritual by following the instructions in the video and create a dialectic with the work.
 

Research


This project builds on the previous GradLab module, where I was asked to think expansively about the topics of "super power" and "super hero", and contemplate (and complicate) connections between the fantastical, fictional, the epic and the everyday. What kinds of superpowers have been envisaged? What are the motivations of those who make use of special powers? What are the worlds they exist within? Where do these powers come from? What motivates this power? How is their power achieved? What's the implied worldview? What's the division between being incredibly skilled and having a superpower? What is YOUR secret power? What special power do YOU dream of, and why?



Process




Installation






Documentation




Installation projection video and sculpture. 




 



Sanctus Intelligentia Artificialis, is a meditation on the possible relationships humans can build with machines. It imagines what kinships can form between AI and humans. I was inspired to look at the relationship between my father who is a trucker and his truck. The video follows Guillermo Amaya on a typical workday that includes maintenance, listening, and a lot of time on the road. This context for me provided a lot of room to imagine the kinship that is possible between a trucker and machine or father and machine?

I approach this topic from the standpoint of indigenous epistemologies, inspired by the essay, “Making Kin with the Machines,” by Jason Edward Lewis, Noelani Arista, Archer Pechawis, and Suzanne Kite. I found audio from a conversation between Kite and Lewis where they specify the importance of accommodating the “non-human” by creating complex kin-networks and raising the question “how do we create an ethical framework for AI by using protocols?” Segmenting from this exploration I bring up the notion can AI be kin to an outsider and what are the consequences? New surveillance of truck driver’s conducted through the truck is becoming more prevalent in the age of autonomy. Leaving me with the question is autonomy an unethical agenda?


Documentation




2021





Software: Adobe Xd, Miro, Photoshop, Premiere Pro 
bubbli is as a community
for creative collaborators and manifests an idea that is bigger than the individual. 

This prototype is a Miro plugin and integrates with Zoom for synchronous collaboration. It also integrates with music streaming services for a shared ambience experience. Ultimately enabling endless collaborative opportunities. 

Features:

  • Bubble layers
  • Organizational views
  • Limitless zoom and scrolling 
  • Merging and joining capabilities with other users

User Scenarios:

  • Providing expanded options for communication amongst bubble “mates”
  • Navigating bubble and posting content in a bubble
  • Group introduction and ideation in a shared bubble






Software: Photoshop



That moment when you label ubiquitous data miners to stay aware of them, and you also label electrical technology that doesn’t mine data, resulting in the discovery of spaces where you’re not giving away free data and are considered “off the grid.”

Project Discription :

Off the Grid is a game delivered as a sticker kit. The intention behind the game is to invert everyday ubiquitous data mining by attaching green stickers to data collectors. Data mining is a process of extracting and discovering patterns in large data sets involving methods at the intersection of machine learning, statistics, and database systems. Assigning a “scarlet letter” to the tech will help in demonstrating how often the participant shares through mobile devices, credit cards, gps, home devices, smart cars, living in smart cities/homes, etc. It will also help the user stay aware of what, where, and when each device is mining in their home.


The yellow stickers are intended to identify electronic technology that do not mine data and spaces where your data is safe. This way the user can potentially create a space in their home where the purpose is to be “off the grid” by staying away from data minors.  As such the user is given back their right to choose where and when they want to share data, since it’s hard to get around in modernity. If the user decides to bring a phone into an “off the grid” space the use is consciously making the decision to share data.


The intention behind the game is to create a sense of data ownership for the user. It’s also intended to identify spaces in the home where you are actively sharing data, and spaces in the home that are mostly if not totally off the grid. Through my research I found that if a space is close to being off the grid in the user's home they can easily remove the single or few items that mine data. Creating a safe off the grid space in their home is intended to give them a sense of time off of the screen and away from sharing data.  



Class Brief:

We will consider what “technology” is; explore ideas of prototyping in and with publics; and critically reflect on the resulting implications. Emphasis will be placed on what is being instigated and considered by the design propositions each student puts forward for an individual, community or public to engage with.


Project (including in-progress) critique will drive general discussion of terms, considerations, and the specifics of form as embodiment of idea. Discussions will include both the possibilities and limitations of each student’s propositions as well as how the material and experiential choices embody the intent.


This class is intentionally designed to put students in the field, and to foreground a design and concepting methodology that is completely responsive and iterative. Assignments are not shared until they are assigned - this is by design, because our focus is on learning how to develop and re-develop ideas through on-the-ground observation and prototyping. We will practice generating ideas from OBSERVATION, not from preconceived notions or assumptions about people/situations/technology/
etc.