In order to promote change creative techniques are used to capture people’s attention and to visually represent stories. Speculative, critical and statement design are used to show people how actions of today could affect the future.
Critical design is successful in addressing issues within current trends. This form of design fiction aims to look at trends that will impact our future, and then visualise these futures through products that would need to exist or final outcomes that showcase the issues. Therefore could this practice help draw light on environmental issues and help the user reflect, thus empowering them to make a change? The term Critical Design was coined by Anthony Dunne in his book Hertzian Tales in 1999. Before this naming this design field could be seen as a form of conceptual design. Since then he has popularised the term with his wife Fiona Raby, who have between them made Critical Design an established design strategy with the intention of showing artefacts in museums and galleries. The series, Fragile Personalities in Anxious Times, features objects designed to meet irrational but real needs and includes a huggable atomic bomb to improve the fear of nuclear annihilation.
Lab La Bla’s work looks at materiality, and showcases materials in unusual statement pieces. The ‘Pault Pulp Chair’ challenges the existing systems of production and consumption. By looking at the kitchen as an area for production they envisage a more sustainable future. Ingredients to make food are used to mend and add onto broken pieces of furniture, such as potatoes. The final pieces are eye catching and unsual to capture people’s attention about this shift in making. These images allow us to think differently about our usual habits through visual stimuli.
Juno Calypso is a photographer who explores feminism, feminine ideals and the beauty industry within her work. The portraits that she creates embody an other wordly feeling, whilst also feeling familiar due to her use of her retro american hotel inspired staging. The images in her ‘Joyce’ collection reference the ‘rituals’ women go through for beauty. By overdramatising these steps (such as a whole body green mask) Calypso allows us to understand some of the absurdity we go through to ‘improve’ ourselves.
Although not directly linked to the environment these images allow us to think differently about our usual habits through visual stimuli.