Conclusions about the Desis Lab ELISAVA’s performance at London Design Festival


The performance was great and had a lot of success with the engagement and over 20,000 visitors.

Below are the key points of the performance, that you can re-arrange in order to let everybody understand what actually happened. So it showcases the good job of the students and tutors.

1. Conformity. The aim of the participatory performance “Art-ificial Boundaries” is that everyone just feels the environment, in order to approve it following the conformity to "social norms" we implicitly settled. The audience is invited to enter in a semi-darkness room, creating a suggestive atmosphere of doubts and intrigues. The visitor follows a pathway of multiple sequence of mirrors, symbol of the immersive Digital World of Facebook where you are just one LIKE in a huge ephemeral digital space. A gentle velvet hand with a glitter glow (a tribute to the filmmaker David Linch imaginary)encourages you to take a piece of pink plasticine. Anytime you take the plasticine, 1 like is displayed on the wall in front in a digital counter accordingly.

2. Creativity. The audience, as the whole part of the performance, started creating different forms, shapes and writing down on the wall names, symbols, faces, likes (words such as imagine, faith, hope, human). They express their own feeling of belonging to a group, to a community or perhaps, in some cases, to a lonely own place of imagination. They imitate each other in the gestures, putting the plasticine on the wall as anautomatic action. No one even put the plasticine out of the wall of mirrors, assuredly to the hypothesis we blown to a society with established norms, and it is hard to break it, to follow our own pathway.

3. Reflection. Conformity is the act of matching attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors to group norms. Norms are implicit, specific rules, shared by a group of individuals, that guide their interactions with others.This participatory performance “Art-ificial Boundaries” want to change the narrative and, through the observation of the digital micro-cosmos of LIKE, our society, make a reflection on the decision-making.

We invite the audience to remember on our capability to still make coherent and conscious choice, in our everyday acts. ARE WE A LIKE? Is itjust an automatic approval and we lost the capacity to follow, explore our inner creativity? More than the tendency to conformity in our society so strong... it is a matter of concern.

It raises questions about our way of education, our culture, our values. The"Art-ificial boundaries" are the ones we create. Designing through creativity and let them toexpress our identity, to resist to conformity, make us able to connect again with our humanity.


Special thanks to: Irini Mirena Papadimitriou (Digital Programmes ManagerDepartment of Learning)
V&A (London)
Prof.: Arianna Mazzeo (Elisava)
Tutor: Dani Armengol (Elisava)
Social Media Coordinator: MarzioVeno (Lottarox / Stockholm)
Pictures @ELISAVA DESISLAB Students 2017

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