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Experience is not what happens to you. It is what you do with what happens to you. (Aldous Huxley)

Welcome to the homepage of the Experience Design-concentration of the Master of Visual Arts (MVA)-programme of the Academy of Visual Arts. This is our home on the web, and here you can find all the recent news and activities in connection with our programme. Please take a look, and make sure to come back.

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Featured Projects

On 11, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Have a Seat

by Syna Lee

by Syna Lee

My urban intervention is to create sand spikes on beaches; small sand pyramids to cover part or the entire length of the site – to resemble the spikes under the bridges of HK – to visually communicate the absurdity of banning people from laying down (even) on the beach.

The objective is to create curiosity and frustration for beach goers, forcing them to think ‘What ! We can’t even sit / lay here !?!?!’

“ . .for if the intervention is to find its place, it must make us see what already exists in a new light” *zumthor

By taking HK’s signature ‘homeless-prevention-spikes-on-flat-ground-with-a-roof’ and marrying it with the iconic place to lay-down-and-enjoy-the-sun, the intention is simply to portray our street’s personality in a new light – with maximum contrast and amplification.

“ . . social critique . . . helps to identify social or institutional injustice, and to catalyse larger critical debates in search of a more responsible or sustainable procedures.” *kwon 2004

This intervention is a social critique, to bring to light the pending problem of our city’s unfriendliness with regards to urban seating and also possibly, the attitude towards the homeless. The ease of management is bought at the cost of what? Our ageing population, which is one of our city’s biggest growing concern, people with special needs, the general public, and in my personal case, as a mother-to-be, are feeling desperate on the streets, struggling with the simple basic need to rest our legs, take a break and catch a breath.

There is no better time to reclaim our streets and our spaces, for our basic need to rest and sit.

. . . Coming Soon in Summer 2013

The second phase of this intervention would be collaborative, where like-minded individuals: elderlies / families with children / mothers-to-be / special needs . . . will gather for a day at the beach and make sand spikes together. Participants will then be free to ‘reclaim’ their space by destroying all the sand spikes by playing and relaxing on the beach for the remaining of the day. Political figures / celebrity-mothers-to-be & celebrities / media / . . . . will help kick-off the event.

See you soon !

On 11, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Zoetrope Pole Light

by Max Kong

by Max Kong

Ordinary pole light is used to light up a passage and you simply walkthrough it. Without any thinking or hesitation, we become ignoring the things happening around the passage. What is the last time you notice a little flower opened on the street or some beautiful insects flying in the plant? My project is about making people slow down during they walk along the street.

Zoetrope Pole Light is a pole light that intended to make you stop and watch. Once the pole light sense you coming to it, it will light up and spin the zoetrope inside. You will see there is a little butterfly flying inside the pole light.

On 11, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Four Seasons Bench Bed

by Cathy Wong

by Cathy Wong

When developing the idea I aimed to provide a comfortable enviroment for to the homeless people and couples, that I would see that parks in general have the potential to facilitate the basic need of lying down, staying relax while in reality the experience is ruined by the benches with barriers in the middle.

As I am designing the cushions as the material to fill up the gaps the barrie created, I wanted to make it as suggestive as possible, that they can lie down, and because there are already picto- grams used in park, I first tried with the above designs trying to provoke users to follow the pose so they can see the tree views on top. And I later used mainly autumn color as I think that as autumn and winter approaching I would prefer to make it more fit into the environment, the variety using two sides of the cushions may add the playful element as suggested by one of my instructor, and later when we further have peer critique after a visit to two hotels, while suggested to further develop the patterns, I
then come up with a term “four seasons”, then I think make much sense to the park as a place to experience different seasons as it bring people closer to the nature, that for sure is the name of a hotel.

Then after a few experiment with the materials, I decided to as well offer the variety of softness and hardness of cushions in different sides of them, while one side of spring and summer is the harder foam and another side is stuffed with sponge on the surface, which is again inspired by the different softness pillows provided in one of the hotel visited, and through having a darker side of pattern in the autumn/winter side it provide a subtle different in temperature after a prolonged period of exposure to the environment.

On 09, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Pacman Stairs

by Wyee Tsang

by Wyee Tsang

This project is dedicated to let people choose a fun way to follow practice or rule to build a good habit.

We were educated that we stay one side on stairs and leave room for people to use both sides — up and down. Especially in Hong Kong, when the streets are always busy with different crowds of people, a lot of directional arrows have been pasted on the stairs to guide the people to keep an organized, polite and civilized society. However, sometimes few people actually follow that advice. Can we get more people to walk on a side by making the experience fun and visible to do so? This project has tried to test the stair as a metaphor, a symbol of fun and an interaction experience design with human being.

Project website: http://wyeetsang.com/pacmanstairs/

On 07, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Musical Exercise

by Agnes Lee

by Agnes Lee

Doing exercise is good for health especially for seniors. To make it more fun and good for soul, here comes the creative idea of listening soft musical sounds from music box while doing exercise at the public senior exercise playground. How to make it works? The idea is to install a music box under the handle wheel of senior exercise machines at the playground. When our beloved senior grandma and grandmother are doing exercise through the handle wheel, music will come out through their movement, and they can control when to start and to end interactively.

Doing exercise is good for health especially for seniors. To make it more fun and good for soul, here comes the creative idea of listening soft musical sounds from music box while doing exercise at the public senior exercise playground. How to make it works? The idea is to install a music box under the handle wheel of senior exercise machines at the playground. When our beloved senior grandma and grandmother are doing exercise through the handle wheel, music will come out through their movement, and they can control when to start and to end interactively.

The Cantonese opera song 帝女花 is selected for the music box. This song is unquestionably the most familiar piece among the seniors in Hong Kong. A very local taste mixes so well with it. And, the story behind this song was told through every single musical note, which may even arouse lots of memories of the seniors. It creates happiness in a very low cost.

 

On 07, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Rooftop Picnic

by Angress Li

by Angress Li

Ever though of having a picnic in a park? How about a park inside the city, somewhere close to the neighborhood area in Hong Kong? Yet, when looking closely inside the park, there are many restrictions like no lying down, no gambling, and even includes no eating!

Therefore, let’s bring the picnic up to the next level!

Rooftop Picnic is an activity attempt to expand the usable urban area, in which it allows to generate new relationship with the neglected space. While there are lots of limitations on the usage of the park at the ground level, the rooftop is a hide-away flat surface. With the Rooftop Picnic Set, include a folded aluminum ladder, a rope, a mat, a basket and unlimited creativities; the area is open for enjoyment.

In Doreen Massey’s A Global Sense of Place, she mentioned that “…there are real relations with real content – economic, politi-cal, cultural – between any local place and the wider world in which it is set’. Once the regular usage of a space is opened, new sets of experiences begin.

On 07, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Reframe City

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by Vicky Lam

I love window, a passage for you to connect with space outside your apartment, allows the fresh air, sun light and breeze to pass in. You can view; you can hear or even smell the changing weather. A framed space just a like a passage for you to connect with.

Unlike a picture or photo, the image of framed area is fluid and changing with time. When you pass by the frame, you become part of landscape and subject of the framed area. When you view the framed area, you become the spectator. When there is an empty frame, what kind of interaction does it produce in a public space? While you gaze on someone who passes by, they may be at the same seeing you. At that time you and the strangers are linked by seeing through the frame.

An empty frame also represents an eye, a spectator’s eye; it is full of opportunity and imagination. A part of my project is to invite audiences to upload their photos to a website when they pass by the frame. When you access the internet, it is fascinated to find there are couples, lovers, families, friends, babies, tourists, and animals to be framed during a particular of time.

Empty frames are actully full of possibilities that you can fill it with everything, inculding memories!

On 07, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Pedestrians’ Experience

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by Foon Lee

Nowadays, it’s a common phenomenon that people are busy focusing on their own ‘work’ when they are walking along the street. For example: making phone calls, texting messages, listening to music, playing with their electronic devices etc. They seem to disconnect with the community. The aim of this project is to draw people’s attention by setting up an urban intervention, and to reconnect them back to the community. The setup is, hanging a mirror ball near a street lamp to let the pedestrians to see its shiny surface and its reflections.

Pedestrians’ Experience
– When pedestrians was walking through the road.
– Some of them would be attracted by the mirror ball’s shiny surface, and look at it for 1 to 5 seconds. (Connected to the community)
– Once they discovered the reflections, they will stay for 5 to 20 seconds or even longer. However, if they noticed I was watching them, they would escape immediately.
– If they didn’t notice the reflections from the mirror ball, they would simply leave. (Might still connected to the community or disconnected to it.)
– During the process, I hope the pedestrians will thoroughly look at this area that they usually didn’t to pay attention to, the walls, the plants, the trees and the buildings, also the relationship between the reflections and all the surroundings.

Relationship between the installation and the environment
– It’s interesting that the street lamp is facing to the tree rather than to the road, and a strong spotlight was there to illuminate the trunk of the tree showing that the creator/designer emphasizes the existence of the area/tree. This urban intervention enhances the effect from these two light sources.
– Hanging a new mirror ball near to an old tree showing the contrast between the new world and the history of that area.
– The light reflections beamed on the surroundings showing that how the mirror ball react and relate to this specific area.
– The turning around movement of the mirror ball showing that how the mirror ball react and relate to the natural environment (wind) and human beings (wind created by their movements).
– The pedestrians look at the visual effect created by this installation, showing that they are having connection to the surrounding as well as the community.

On 04, Dec 2012 | No Comments | In | By Cathy

Mimic Motion

by Dave Cho

by Dave Cho

Understanding visualization, brain and action

The relationship between the human brain, the visual and the action is a part of our lives. We will make countless acts everyday, and each act and move is being affected by the impact of this relationship, and repeatedly all the times.

Plants are human

I want to create a certain environment with human body as the focus into an ornamental plants, which those plants are human. We generally could see a lot of ornamental plants among our environment. Those flowers and trees are all having lives, they will growth, shake and move with the wind but not consciously. They have no brain to think. And what I hope to achieve is, to use transparent glass in a different environment, paste on a ruled mask in front with an illusion graphic on the back, people passed by will curious to appreciate the animated optical illusion while they will swing their bodies like a piece of plant.

The hidden wind

These people neatly standing, swaying with the ornamental illusion graphic, and the passed by will also watch these swaying people. These upright bodies standing unsteadily, look like a plant, however, plant is having no consciousness but human do have a conscious but work out like an unconscious thing, to compare this behavior between two (human and plant), which could also understand as using “consciousness” to replace the “wind”, I called this scenario the “hidden wind”.

The response of people to the apparatus

At first, people keep move the body to view the works, but when they have seen less than the clearest image, they started to swing more strong, and some may even ignore whether could see the image action to rush quickly toward the images to create their own way for a new illusion effects. The most interesting part is when I used the phone to show them a demo with a clearly optical illusion effect, they all feel very good but then spent no more look on the works. On the contrary, when they watched the unclear images on the glasses, they will stand a long time to watch instead, they always have the urge to rely on themselves to change for the image pop up, or even unconsciously move back and forth, swing left and swing right, try fast and slow, and only to know how the actual images should be produced. Some people really try to imitate the action of the images which I think is very cool that I have never expect.

I analyze and think actually what they are pursuing to stay for some time to watch these sequence animation? They do not just want to find out the correct position, to allow themselves to see the original image. Everyone stay in that position for a few minutes, they will begin to constantly change their action likely to create their own way of viewing the illusion, to create their own individual visual effects, at the same time, they are enjoying this kind of visual impact which will stimulate the brain.