Archive for the ‘student projects’ Category

Natsuko preparing for the Zones of Emergency Exhibition tomorrow

Sunday, May 11th, 2008

Today, we spent most of the day at 620 Putnam considering how we might bring our research, which has been mostly online, to this physical space. Owned by MIT, 620 Putnam is the site of a paint factory that has been neglected for what looks like years. As we contextualize our research off site without the tools and technologies with which we are familiar, we hope to generate a space for dialogue. Perhaps in this space we can re-examine the concepts of emergency that we have been exploring over the course of the term.

Songs for Sudan

Sunday, May 11th, 2008

Singing sorrow in this poem/song edited from newspaper articles on Sudan

Song for Sudan

The government - humiliates - to - Wipe - OUT


slave girl

5 to 6 men raped us in rounds - could not forgive me - disowned me

where the men are - skin darker than ours

It is not in the culture of Sudan

It does not exist.

Singing sorrow My zone of emergency is the genocide happening in Sudan, where the black African population are being wiped out and especially the rape crisis affecting the women and girls in Sudan. When women taking refuge in camps leave to search for necessary food or water, they run the risk of gang rape and mutilation by the Janjaweed. Amnesty International says rape is used as a weapon of war in Sudan. The Sudanese government denies this is happening or that they are involved. Women who report violent attacks risk consequences in their communities and with the law. I want to sing sorrow to acknowledge the plight of African women and for the black African community, Christian and Muslim who are being murdered, raped and violently wiped out. Keening was a tradition in the past, where women used voice to mourn the sorrow or death. I want to use my voice to acknowledge what is happening in Sudan and open up a space of awareness, mourning and dialogue.  I gathered texts on the internet. Many of my selected articles were by New York Times reporter Nicholas D. Kristof. I edited the texts to create poems to sing for sudan.

“The Sudanese government and the Janjaweed militias, an Arab supremacist movement, have been carrying out a horrifying campaign of ethnic cleansing against African tribes. Some 2,700 villages have been destroyed, and as a result of the violence and the related starvation and disease, some 250,000 Sudanese have died, most in 2003 and 2004, and another two million have fled to refugee camps. The Bush administration has called these atrocities a genocide.”

Andrew S. Natsios, U.S. Special Envoy to Sudan in 2006-7 and Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development in 2001-6

New Urban Arts: how to _____

Saturday, May 10th, 2008

How to _____ is a collaborative project with New Urban Arts, a free interdisciplinary arts studio for Providence high school students and emerging artists. The “how to” video was chosen as a medium because of it’s potential to engage large audiences in art as makers through online participatory networks. The act of making a how to video is a creative act in and of itself and cements one’s knowledge of what it being demonstrated. In the context of a nonprofit arts organization, how to videos reflect the work of the organization to the outside world while strengthening student voices. For this project, six how to videos were made covering a variety of creative practices. They were posted on New Urban Arts youtube channel and posted on New Urban Arts wiki, which was created specifically for this project.

Julia Gualtieri, RISD, MA Art + Design Education, Community Tract

Can Do: Small steps. Big Impact.

Saturday, May 3rd, 2008

Can Do is an experiment in gathering a collection of small steps everyone can make to positively change in our environment. It is based in the belief that building a community of people interested in taking some of these small steps can be a powerful motivating tool, and empower us with the knowledge of our collective impact.

The central idea for this project was that small lifestyle changes across many people hold tremendous power to affect my zone of emergency (the worsening environmental situation), and so I designed a web site where I could gather people’s ideas for those types of changes, and then track the aggregate contributions of each member.

More information:

Katy Harris, MFA Graphic Design, Candidate 2009

INSURGENT AND ONLINE: Utterances. A Diasporic Project for the 2008 Zimbabwe Election Experience

Friday, May 2nd, 2008

The elections are in process. For the past decade Zimbabwe has experienced a tumultuous turn of events: politically, socially, economically. On March 6th , 2008 Zimbabwe’s inflation was reported at 100,000 %. The diasporic experience of the crumbling socio-political fabric is the focus of this project. This project attempts to give agency back to the diasporic dialogue through an insurgent online practice or the manifesto as an ‘utterance.’ The method used for this expression is speech, or utterances, that remain anonymous, yet critical….. enough.

Tsitsi Isabel Gora

project process website:

audio samples:

This Is My Providence

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

This Is My Providence is a community-building project that aims to show arts events and programs in Providence to visitors, residents, and future residents from the perspective of grassroots community leaders. The emergency that motivated this project is that of the missed opportunity to interact with what’s best about Providence. The purpose of the project is to highlight vibrant arts culture, debunk myths, and improve understanding of the strong cultural fabric in Providence.
Postcard imagery is generated by local community members who share photographic documents of people participating in favorite events and programs in Providence. The images are then made into postcards that include detailed information about the event and people pictured, so that new people can get involved. These postcards are distributed free of charge in the busiest areas of downtown Providence. A web presence with links will be added.

Lindsay Kinkade, Graphic Design MFA, ‘10
click on ThisIsMyProvidence

links to cool things in Providence:

we are all part of the greater system - sustainability in china

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

This project is an attempt to physically portray the complexity of the issues of sustainability in China — one of the largest growing socio-political entities in the world. While China has encountered rapid social and economic developments in the past few decades, these changes have come at a price. Income disparity has widened while pollution has increased to the level of human health threat. The triple bottom line of sustainability [environment, social equity, and economy] is threatened at many levels becoming a major Zone of Emergency. This project educates the visitors by physically portraying and exposing the complexity of the issue of sustainability through a visual display of network system of relevant actors. The final participatory element of the piece poses a query to the visitors regarding the issue of sustainability in China.

Natsuko Kikutake

Online Camera Obscura: Reflections of Uncertainty

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

project website:

While standing in a camera obscura, reality, perception, illusion and appearance become questioned: how information is passed along and made visual is the ultimate degeneration of passed along information and a misplacing of origin.

Truth vs. Fiction. Just like on the internet.

By Installing a portable camera obscura that is utilized by cross sections of the public, a metaphor is established between the camera and Internet as an unreliable archive.

These archives hold memories, searches for memories, truths, facts and fictions: often in real time, often in collision with one another.

The camera is placed in high traffic locations and advertised to peak interest. Viewer participation is encouraged by inviting the public to digitally photograph once inside the camera obscura and post these photographs to an online gallery.


Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

The driving interest for this work is the study of the intersection of virtual and physical life. As technology continues to advance, the boundary between the two becomes less clear. This project aims to explore this boundary by examining it through the lenses of online social networking and gym culture. These two trends, one virtual and one physical, share several interesting correlations, and also some cause for concern.

By bringing online social networking and gym culture together through interventions that address both spaces, I question our interaction with each, and the mediation of the two.

Add the Gym Buff application to your facebook page here!


Tuesday, April 29th, 2008

TELLeyeVISION examines the response to popular user-generated video and contrasts the nature of text-based commentary with the realtime reactions of viewers’ eyes. These two elements are combined and replayed synchronously with the original video on a large-scale wall projection; inviting a meta level conversation about human expressivity in the online context which often distills complex interpersonal dialog down to one-line snippets and retorts.

Adam Kumpf ::