Onedotzero takes the lead on digital show for the V&A

Onedotzero, graphics group Hawaii and architect Francesco Draisci are working on a digital design exhibition set to open at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum in December.

Digital arts organisation Onedotzero and the V&A are jointly curating Decode: Digital Design Sensations, which will feature existing and newly commissioned works by Troika, Simon Heijdens, Daniel Brown, Golan Levin and Daniel Rozin.

The V&A appointed Draisci and Hawaii at the end of April following a creative pitch against four other design pairings that, according to Draisci, included Imagination. Draisci selected Hawaii as his pitch partner, having worked with the group for Designersblock 2001. The group is also on the V&A’s preferred supplier list for graphic designers.

Draisci describes finding a logical way of presenting the 20-30 digital works in the show as ‘a real challenge’.

‘Digital design is extremely heterogeneous in its formats – the artworks range from projections and interactives to incorporating analogue objects such as hairdryers,’ he says. ‘The work on display will not be too much about the technology behind digital design, but more about the friendly user-experience of it,’ adds Draisci.

Draisci’s solution is to divide the show into three sections, linked by a meandering, ribbon-like wall. Codes as a Raw Material will feature digital pieces that use code to generate ever-changing images.

The Interactivity section will include works like Golan Levin’s Opto-Isolator, a mechanical eye which mimics the viewer’s eye movements. The Network will focus on pieces that use digital traces left behind by communications technologies to translate into graphic forms.

Hawaii is opting for a ‘crafts-based, very British’ look for its graphics and signage, creating 3D graphics that will protrude from the walls.

‘This will provide a contrast to the digital electronic nature of the artworks,’ according to Hawaii managing director Paul McAnelly. ‘We are referencing the V&A’s heritage without being too Victoriana.’

The V&A is also commissioning a digital work for its website – a first for the museum – and will provide remote access to some of the works on display.

Draisci lost out to Block Architecture to design the museum’s contemporary gallery in 2006 (DW 2 November 2006). His work has been exhibited at the museum twice.

Decode/ Digital Design Sensations will run at the V&A’s Porter Gallery from 8 December until 11 April 2010.

Works to Decode:

  • Weave Mirror by Daniel Rozin, which is formed from 768 motorised planes that rotate to reveal a portrait of the viewer
  • A new piece by Daniel Brown, inspired by the Victoria & Albert Museum’s collection, will generate ever-changing depictions of growing plants
  • Jonathan Harris and Sep Kemvar’s project We Feel Fine extracts comments by bloggers and represents the information as colourful, floating spheres

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