Creating little worlds

Patrick Jacobs. (2011) Dandelion Cluster #2. At Otherwordly, MAD museum, NYC.

Children’s curiosity makes them do lots of random things. According to one of my SVA IxD teachers, Chris Fahey, a child aspiring to become an interaction designer might lean towards one of these approaches in play:

1. Taking things apart to see how they work
2. Fixing things that are broken
3. Creating little worlds

One would hope for the parents’ sake that fascination for approach #1 would go hand in hand with #2. Personally, I believe I gravitated mostly towards the least destructive and most practical of the three options. However, even though my tolerance for fantasy as a genre is fairly low, I definitely remember designing some awesome worlds as a child…

I built LEGO worlds (but then again, who didn’t?). I drew some crazy treasure hunt maps for non-existent treasures in my neighborhood using the coordinate system, X marking the spot and all. I created some fairly advanced pop-up-book art with lots of small paper bits and pieces showing up behind windows and doors. I also knitted a tiny teddy bear, to then move on to knit his clothes, a backpack, and even made a little ABC book, full of illustrations from A to Ã… (yup, all 29 letters in the Norwegian alphabet included) so my teddy bear wouldn’t walk around carrying only air.

I typically always spent more time creating the world then playing within it, which might be why my barbie dolls, my Baby Born doll (the doll that could eat, pee and poop), and the Polly Pockets never really got the attention they possibly deserved. But it’s been a while since I immersed myself into world creation now. Though this CabReel concept video from last semester might come close with all its’ paper wonderfulness.

No matter, the exhibition at Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) called Otherwordly: Optical Delusions and Small Realities blew my mind when it comes to small worlds. The level of details in the exhibition suggests artists who must be blessed with a patience …ehm… out of this world(!). The photos taken of these small scale models reveal so much details and look so real that it’s hard to believe that the photo really is of the tiny model at all. These bad iPhone photos do not do the amazingly detailed art any justice:

Amy Bennett (and SVA IxD student Guri Venstad)

Lori Nix

Gregory Euclide

Junebum Park

Alan Wolfsen

Patrick Jacobs

If you’re in New York you need to go to see this live. GO! Before September 18th which is this Thursday. Or see a few of the artists explaining their art and motivation: Alan Wolfsen & Lori Nix. Thanks to lovely Petra (@prntscreen) for the recommendation!

I am hereby extremely excited about the upcoming semester and all the projects that potentially could turn into some mini-worlds where I can play God for a day. Muahahahaha.

One Response to “Creating little worlds”

  1. A New Mummy sier:

    Been on the lookout for a few cool types of clothes for our daughter, it seems fashion for any under 5′s is severely lacking style!

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