When you pay your groceries at the supermarket checkout, the thermal printer that prints the receipt is just something usual that would not particularly get your attention. But when you take this device out of the supermarket and use it to design a poster, it suddenly becomes un-usual. The gesture of re-contextualizing and the intervention into the software create a moment of defamiliarization that makes the technology visible, opens a critical gaze and makes the technology usable as a tool for designing something new. The usual becomes unusual. This also leads to the possibility to question everyday circumstances critically. What invisible power structures are embedded in technology, how can they be made visible? Can we understand re-contextualisation as a way to make technology more accessible?
With the online-publication »re-coding everyday technologies« we want to look at how the unusual and methods that subvert can be used for a more critical understanding of everyday digital technology and what the role of design could be to enable engagement with technology. As »re-coding« we understand acts of altering or reinterpreting digital technology e.g. through intervention in their codes, but also as a change in meaning or context – changing encodings, cultural codes or hidden structures.
We are looking for contributions that re-code everyday technology or reflect the re-coding of digital technology. Areas of interest are for instance:
- Explorations into aesthetics and interrelations of everyday / unusual media
- Design experiments with everyday technology
Examples / Instructions / Tutorials of unusual use of everyday digital technology
- How subverting digital media can be revealing about the technology, the design of technology or the role of everyday digital technology in society
- How methods of re-coding / subverting / de-familiarizing can be used in (visual) design
- How can design as a form of counter-action make technologies visible and critically examine them?
- Which bodies are considered when everyday tools are designed and which aren’t? How can tools be re-coded to make them more accessible for diverse audiences?
- How can an unusual design activate audiences and elicit critical reflection?
- How design, standards and habits are connected
The Online Publication
The online publication will take the shape of a browser-based application and can present browser-based work, concept descriptions, theoretical reflections, tutorials for recoding, documentation of installations or other experimental hybrid formats. We are specifically interested in projects that use digital media / (creative) coding and that could also be displayed on a screen (e.g. low res LED panel). Projects can be, but are not limited to, interventions, designs, theoretical or artistic perspectives or combinations.
Your contribution must be able to be shown in the browser-based publication and participants must be willing to document and open source their code for publication.
The project will be launched and shown as part of an exhibition from 11th to 20th October at the LUX Pavillon in Mainz, in collaboration with the symposium Interpose.
How to Apply
The call is open for artists, coders, designers, practitioners, students and amateurs. We are explicitly interested in contributions by artists underrepresented in tech communities.
Artist honorarium: 500€ (incl. VAT)
Deadline Open Call: 23. July, 2023
Your contribution will be compensated with a honorarium of 500 €.
To apply please send an e-mail including a short proposal (description incl. applied media of max. 1 page, PDF + sketch, video or photo, if available) for your contribution and a short bio (for potential publication, incl. work focus, interests, pronoun) to email@example.com
The jury consists of the curatorial team of the project. You will hear back from us max. 2 weeks after the call closes.
Please submit a 1 page PDF with a short description, applied media + your short bio.
If you have any questions, feel free to reach out!