Archive for March, 2007

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony

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An inspiring ceremony is the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony. It is held in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, and one of the objectives is to console the victims of the atomic bomb. The 6th of August every year, thousands gather to pray for the realization of a lasting world peace. The ceremony is 45 minutes long and contains, amongst other things, silent prayer, bell ringing (at 8:15, the time the bomb was dropped), peace declaration, 1000 doves being released, commitment to peace (by child representatives), and the Hiroshima Peace song (sung by a choir with approximately 500 members).

Question

It is not unusual that war memorials don’t function as well as they are intended to. Often people just walk past them and ignore them. “Are war memorials to fallen heroes really ignored because people don’t want to honor the fallen? Or because they don’t want to think about the horrors of war?” Probably the last one right? So how do you inspire your audience to want to think of war? That’s the question of today.

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Touched Echo

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How about this interaction? Touched Echo is a installation for the balustrade on the “Bruehlsche Terrasse” in Dresden. From it you have a view of “Neustadt” which was almost completely destroyed in World War II. By placing their hands over their ears while leaning against the balustrade, vistors will hear bombers flying over their head and explosions of the bombs. The echo of the past (the sound) is transmitted via the forearm to your skull bone, where it enters the inner ear). Interesting.

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Learning from Advertising

greatpockets.jpgGreatpockets.com is an advertising site for Nokias new phone. But I didn’t know that when I entered the site and I thought of it only as a joyful and well-crafted piece of critical design. It has some nice interactive storytelling and humour and so on. But then when I thought I was exiting the site, the real point of it flew in and landed delicately in my lap. Nice!

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ECOTONOHA

Website from NEC where people leave messages as tree leaves. A visitor can only enter one message per day in order to enable as wide participation as possible. Up to 500 entries make one tree and after that a new tree appears. The numbers of entries, leaves determine an actual tree planting activate. For every 100 signatures on Ecotonaha NEC planted another tree addition to those planted during the Kangaroo Island project. Last year 2006 they had 107.054 messages and 1.070 trees were planted.

From website:
“ECOTONOHA IS A PROJECT – TO NURTURE A VIRTUAL TREE COLLABORATIVELY, AND AT THE SAME TIME CONTRIBUTE TO THE ACTUAL ENVIRONMENT TO COPE WITH GLOBAL WARMING. AS YOU MAKE ECOTONOHA’S LEAVES, THE VIRTUAL TREE WILL GROW, AND AS ECOTONOHA GROWS, REAL TREES WILL BE PLANTED BY NEC.”

This whole concept is well thought throw and the website very beautiful. It’s a good example of how a message board can be more and look better then a traditional message board. It is also an example of how the web can be used to encourage visitors to participate in something bigger then just the actual web site.
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Go to https://www.ecotonoha.com/index_en.html and leave a message.

Creator of the website seems to be http://www.yugop.com/ which also has a very interesting website.

/a.

Dagens….

Fem myror är fler än fyra Saddam…

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Mashed Bagdad Potatoes

There’s just so many ways to play with maps… Three projects I found today work with mashing maps of different cities together, and through that emphazise differences between the places.

youarenothere.jpgBagdad can be toured in Brooklyn in the piece You Are Not Here. By putting the two cities maps on top of eachother, the artists could decide where to put site specific information from the streets of Bagdad on the correlating places in Brooklyn, in form of stickers with access codes and telephone numbers to “the Tourist Hotline”. The information recieved could for instance contain ‘the toppling of the statue of Saddam Hussein and how this might have been a stage event as most of the spectators of it were American soldiers and journalists’. The time it takes to walk all over town, in addition to the information with a different perspective then we get from TV news, can give room for discussion and contemplation.

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Next project is called
Bagdad><San Fransisco. Here it’s more about what San Fransisco would look like if they got the same bombs that Bagdad recieved. Would your home be bombed?










cherry.jpgThe last project I found working with entangled city maps is called Cherry Blossoms, and was actually inspired by Bagdad<>San Fransisco. Creator Alyssa Wright brings the bombs of Bagdad back home to the US in her own way; She let’s you put on a backpack filled with confetti and sends you on walk through the streets of Boston. Your backpack can, and will, blow up at any moment. It works like this:

‘Cherry Blossoms is a backpack that uses a small microcontroller and a GPS unit. Recent news of bombings in Iraq are downloaded to the unit every night, and their relative location to the center of the city are superimposed on a map of Boston. If the wearer walks in a space in Boston that’s correlated to a site of violence in Baghdad, the backpack detonates, releasing a compressed air cloud of confetti, looking for all the world like smoke and shrapnel. Each piece of confetti has the name of a civilian who died in a war based on lies.’

I would just love to have a backpack like that…. Here’s another link explaining the project.

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