"EAT, WEAR, SHARE"
HOW TO BRING PEOPLE TOGETHER ?
There are many ways to gather people and make them interact within a space. In a course by Christina Karababa at University of applied Sciences I learned about “relational art” - movement where artist becomes a catalyst and designer of a space inviting the audience to interact. This topic fascinated me and I started to ask myself: can jewellery become relational art? I decided to explore this within my Bachelor thesis.
WHY FOOD ?
Food is more than just energy needed by our bodies. It is a tradition, heritage, pleasure. Sharing food in some cultures is a powerful ritual expressing trust and creating bounds. Previous experiments where I created eatable jewellry lead me to decision: I will use food as a medium to trigger interaction between people.
FOOD IN ART AND PERFORMANCE
In art and performance I found many examples of food related art. I let them become an inspiration but I tried to create something that could be acually applied as an art of a game used within parties and social events. The challenge was to make it wearable, playful and inviting.
"SO I SHOULD EAT FROM THIS ? "
MOCKUPS AND TESTING
For the form I decided to create gemstone alike shapes which structure still remains an echo of traditional jewelry but with a modern twist. At the same time the functionality of a “plate” being able to carry food was setting guidelines. The challenge became even bigger during testing the first mockups. Some users were too afraid to interact because of personal sphere they didn't want to intrude. I learned that my experiment was also challenging people to get closer physically and trust a stranger.
ONE TIME VS. LASTING EXPERIENCE
My project was getting more and more developed and at some point I stumbled upon a question: how the process of interacting with my objects will go? Will it be one time experience or something that will last and repeat? This brought the idea of creating two lines of objects - one that can be used as a party/event acessory and second that can last and be used further.
Parallel to material experiments I finished exploring form and decided on 5 final geometric shapes that can be folded from flat piece of material. I wanted the paper to be one time use playful experience that is easy to create, would will be lasting longer experience of something that can be folded multiple times and finally glass will be static form reminding of luxurious pieces of porcelain sets that can last for generations.
VIDEO SET BACKSTAGE
TELLING A STORY
To present the use and idea behind my project I decided to shoot a video showing how I imagine my collection in use. I created storyboard and supervised the filming. The biggest success was to watch my whole team having fun while using my necklaces.
Result of my exploration is collection of wearables from different materials. The wearables are meant to be an accessory in social game where food in the forms connects people and helps them break the ice. Important part of the experiment is time. Different materials in final collection enable different time of use - paper forms are meant to be one time experience while glass, porcelain and wood can be used multiple times. My project is supposed to encourage people to interaction and also provoke discussion.
Beside obvious learnings about material and form this project thought me a lot about how to manage time and prioritise tasks. It also pushed my limits as a designer. As my design developed I realised that topic of entering someones personal space in interaction is though and sometimes I needed to confront people with different opinions about my project. What I found surprising was that rarely anyone had no reaction to my design. I also learned that presentation is very important and can change the way the displayed project will be perceived.