Climate Cubes —
Multi-sensory Design +
Climate change is an issue being voiced by people throughout the world. Cites deal with these environmental challenges in their own way due to their economic circumstance.
Through these concerns, this installation gives a multi-sensory insight into how climate change is affecting the most developed, developing and undeveloped cities of the world through a set of interactive boxes.
Touch - weight of CO2
Smell - energy consumption
Sound - rising of sea levels
Sight - size of population
Exhibited and filmed at London College of Communication, University of the Arts London Degree Show.
Initial Project Direction
Crazy Eights Design Sprint
Based on my previous project, Colour Vision I was interested in continuing this area of interest further but in a different direction. This design sprint led to Typography (from my project) and Multi-sensory design (through talks with my peers).
* click on the images to find out more
Multi-sensory design research + Inspiration
Multi-sensory design was a new area of interest and pursuing it further meant that research and understanding this subject area was important for the development of this project.
Designer Kenya Hara and his idea of Senseware and information architecture became a topic of interest. As well as David Genco's project 'Synesthetic Calculus' which specifically looks at Synesthesia.
During this stage, it was clear that pursuing typography would not be good due to the lack of existing projects and ideas around it. I continued looking at multi-sensory design.
My perspective of multi-sensory design through poetry and words rather than type.
To understand multi-sensory design physically I used a poem that was simple but could easily be imagined.
As its a prototype, I decided to visualise one line
"Beside the brook the lush grass thickens."
Brook - an image + sound (sight + sound)
lush grass - artificial grass + smell (sight + touch + smell)
poem line - (sight touch)
I have integrated as many senses in a single box to represent a line.
Wireframes/ Initial design thoughts on potential outcome
I have transferred/tweaked the design onto a box, as it works better physically
Researching into current environmental issues will provide more narrative through the multi-sensory design, compared to my prototype of seasons. The prototype has helped me introduced an interesting subject area and given me ways of producing something that combines the two elements effectively.
Through this stage, I researched the cause of climate change specifically in London such as carbon emisson and air quality, energy use waste and recycling. Also, I was fascinated by the podcast, The Uninhabitable Earth by David Wallace-Wells which has been a huge influence.
Climate Change of London
These design contribute to the final outcome
What: create a multi-sensory installation representing London’s climate change issues
Why: to raise awareness for climate change in London, the largest city in Europe to see the current effects/causes of it today
How: using an enclosed space to peak through into specific climate change issue at a global scale
Design Development + Look
During this stage, changes had to be made. The data used was taken from a different area of London. However, there was too much similarity resulting in the same information and limited the number of senses used within the box.
To resolve this data taken cities around the world were used. This data was based on the most developed, undeveloped and developing cities of the world. The same causes of climate change would stay the same but the design would need to change alongside.
Final Design Idea
Sight – the size of boxes (gets bigger) – depending on the size of the population
Sound – volume (increases) – a ‘ping’, pitch change
Smell – intensity (increases)
Touch – weight (gets heavier) – depending on the amount of CO2
Tokyo, Japan (developed)
Delhi, India (developing)
Ethiopia, Africa (undeveloped)
London, United Kingdom (developed, current location)
Design + Prototyping
Experimenting with maps, layouts and aesthetics
A black box is used as it makes the user interact with it as well as learn. This is why they are very simple.
Build of Boxes
Each box is made out of black acrylic. They are different sizes to relate to the population of each city
Inside the box has clay to provide the weight of CO2