The editors of visit1862 are very excited to be collaborating with the History of Design and Information Experience Design MA courses at the Royal College of Art on a five-week project entitled Expo Futures.
The project is bringing designers and historians together to critically analyse exhibition cultures and explore potential future directions for international expos. While many of the IED students have recently visited the Milan Expo to inspire their thoughts and criticisms of expo practices, the History of Design students are carrying out research into international contributions to the 1862 International Exhibition. This research will therefore both form a critical framework for the designers as they engage with contemporary exhibitionary practices and contribute to visit1862’s on going research.
After yesterday’s fascinating brainstorming session, the students have collectively identified six themes that will form the basis of their subsequent research:
- The context in which expos function in
- The agenda behind expos
- The global character of expos
- The tension between the global and local in expo practices
- The tension between the digital and physical aspects of expos
- The sensory experience of expos
These themes will direct next week’s student presentations and subsequent discussions about the progressions of expos, their potentials, problems and pit-falls.
We are very excited about the ideas that are already developing in this project and cannot wait to engage with physical outputs created by the students. The IED and HoD students are going to collaboratively create and curate a one-day exhibition at the end of term based on the research they are carrying out in the first half of the project. While, the HoD students are also going to make contributions to visit1862 based on their research. As visit1862 has always been a collaborative project, we are very grateful to the students for taking on an area of research that we have, as of yet, been able to tackle with any serious intention.
Keep your eyes peeled for further developments.
© Ruth Slatter, 2015