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AGO’s Best & Worst April 20, 2010

Posted by Magdalena Malik in : Check it out, Exer5 (makeup): Experiencing AGO, Exercises , add a comment

The Toronto AGO gallery attracts many people around the globe every day. The subject matter distributed within its walls carries history and foretells wisdom by the work of unique artists. More than 79,000 creations of artwork are kept and viewed by various collections. These collections range from pieces of European Art to Contemporary, Canadian, British, American, and French work. This list is endless and grows quite rapidly. There is a grand diversity in which people are naturally drawn to. No wonder AGO is so popular!

I have had the pleasure to visit the AGO gallery many times throughout my first year at OCAD. I have studied its paintings, photos, sculptures, styles and various mediums used throughout the artist’s collections. In doing so, I have learned plenty of information and come to establish my opinions as to what I like and dislike about the AGO gallery.

In my point of view, the best aspects of AGO must include the following: magnificent architecture, spacious rooms, classy décor, and of course the artwork itself. The architecture is very intriguing and creative such as one of the staircases located in the center of the gallery. The staircase spins towards the top as a cyclone. Very cool! Majority of the rooms that hold artwork are very grand in scale and create a very airy atmosphere. The gallery itself is very taken care of and clean. Visitors appreciate cleanliness. I admire the fact that multiculturalism is respected. The art stored in this gallery is made from many aspiring and talented artists all around the world! I adore looking at it. The social and cultural diversity amongst visitors is also perceived.

In the contrary, an issue I do have is that many artworks do not exemplify an explanation as to what a certain object, painting or picture are presenting. The deep meaning or message is probably the viewer’s obligation to figure out or think about using personal knowledge. But honestly speaking, some artworks are really tough to figure out. An example would be a metal spoon and chair I viewed at the AGO a couple days ago at the structure department. I really had no clue as to what the display meant. A handy solution would be to place a small description as to what the artist was trying to convey in their art piece. With such statement the viewer can think about what they themselves thought, the artist’s message and the public’s opinion.

Also, I agree with Christina Dery, the gift shop is way too expensive!

The AGO gallery holds many memories and future experiences that are very important to me. It’s a place of history, education, tradition, confession, story-telling, survival and most important, adventure!

Written by Mag M.

the long day at ACTIVATE! April 9, 2010

Posted by Lucey En Chung Kim in : Exer4: Best and Worst of ACTIVATE!, Exercises , add a comment

I think it was really interesting to see what kind of ideas other classes came up with for this ACTIVATE! event.  I think ours was pretty successful, even though the morning was all rush-rush and crazy-hectic trying to set up the structure and what-not.  Going around to other classes’ projects, I think that there really wasn’t one that was “the best” or “the worst” because they were equally fun and disappointing in different aspects.  But, anyways:

“The Best”

Although I definately think others were a lot better, the “WTF” circus tent stood out to me, ONLY AFTER I saw one of its poster advertisements.  Viscerally, the structure and the contraption inside the tent was well-made.  Behaviourally, I think it was very clever with the whole “push” button and having someone hidden behind the big “thing” do everything manually.  Reflectively, when I first went in, and came out w/ that small envelope of a random fact, it WAS a put-down.  With a structure made so well and looking very pleasing, I was expecting something SPECTACULAR.  But, in the end, all I got was an envelope w/ a “WTF” stamp on it and a random, sometimes useless, fact.  But, later that day, as I was waiting for the elevator in the Grange, I saw one of their posters.  The poster read something along the lines of, “It’ll make you want to say, “WTF”?”.  Only THEN, did I realize that it was the classes intent for that big put-down after that built-up curiosity at the beginning.  Like I said at the beginning, this isn’t the BEST, but I felt that it should be recognized because it was MEANT to be a big put-down at the end.

“The Worst”

The protest would definately be somewhere I’d categorize as one of the “bad” ones.  One reason would be because I almost forgot that, that WAS one of the class projects for this ACTIVATE! event.  Viscerally, the whole protest looked very legitimate because of the picket signs, big group of people, loud, verbal protests and megaphone.  Behaviourally, that class did a good job in the beginning of marching around and chanting.  But, then I knew that they weren’t going to keep that up for the whole three hours.  So, seeing that they were just hanging around for a majority of the event until the last half hour was no surprise to me.  Reflectively, I remember seeing a facebook event for this protest and people were actually believing that there was going to be a REAL protest.  I, myself, almost believed this event until I saw the details of when this “protest” was going to take place and then thought that it was pretty clever marketing strategy.  I don’t think that this project showed a huge amount of effort in terms of preparation in comparison to other classes.  Also, shouting random chants (for a short period of time) without an ACTUAL good reason for taking art out of OCAD didn’t really show “information” to me.


Posted by Magdalena Malik in : Check it out, Exer4: Best and Worst of ACTIVATE!, Exercises , add a comment

I found Activate! to be an event where many unique and talented people came together to establish a fun yet interesting experiment. The sense of partnership in our community brought out excitement, motivation and intrigue into the project. Support and initiative played an important role in managing such a collaborative booth which I must say looked awesome!

In my point of view, the best and not-so-good qualities of our Activate! show must have included the following…

The attractive colorful design of the Chaordic Collaboratorium booth was visually appealing. The visceral effect of the neon colored papers created interests that pulled viewers in. The cycle of the experience itself was a bit confusing. The users did not quite understand the linkage of Chaos to Order. The topics in the booths were narrow. I believe that if the topics were much grander in the sense of allure then the users would come up with stronger ideas. The magazine cut-outs were engaging and questioned the audience. Inside of our booth the components of light, sound and touch were visceral aspects that intensified the atmosphere of chaos leading to order. Attraction, engagement and creativity played an important role in making this process work. I am very proud of our booth and ambition we all contributed to making it great.

One of my favorite booths would be the one named “WTF?” The slogan or phrase was very catchy and automatically made you think and wonder what the point of this was. This was very successful in engaging an audience.  The circus-like fun colored tent consisting of red and yellow inspired me to go and check out the experience. The “What the Fact” phrase made me laugh!

The Mood- Cubed Box Booth made me a bit confused and the process was infinite. It took a while. The visceral points should have been more clarified and exciting in my opinion. The brown box underneath the die was visible and lacked a certain sense of sophistication. The design wasn’t that good. I am 5’9 and trying to get underneath the box was a bit of a struggle. It did not make me feel as excited as I probably should have been.

Generally, The Activate! project was very amusing and I had a great time working with our class. I never did this type of project before and now must say that it was a totally great experience! 🙂 🙂

Ideas for the second phase/room (Order) March 31, 2010

Posted by Greg Van Alstyne in : A/V: projection, audio, etc, Process/Blueprint team, Proj3: ACTIVATE!, Set+props: ORDER , add a comment

This post is from Maxyne Baker <mb09ng@student.ocad.ca> who is currently working to get her account in the blog reactivated:

Hi everyone, As I am still in Blog Exile hence,I am communicating by email.
my 2 words are SORTED and STUFF
I have some ideas re the second room.

Label the dry erase eraser as a DELETE button.
Perhaps dress the Marker to mimic a STYLUS.
I like the room being plain and white, it’s a small space, people will add colour and movement.
I have 2 ideas re time-based…

  1. The Wickapedia Screen gets starts labtop size and gets larger and larger with each entry.
  2. We somehow project each of the filled in pages on the other 3 walls, adding as the experience repeats itself.

I’m not sure if this is along your train of thought Greg, but here’s my take on your comments.

tr.v. sort·ed, sort·ing, sorts
1. To arrange according to class, kind, or size; classify. See Synonyms at arrange.
2. To separate from others: sort out the wheat from the chaff.
3. To clarify by going over mentally: She tried to sort out her problems.
after a sort
In a haphazard or imperfect way: managed to paint the chair after a sort.
of sorts/a sort
1. Of a mediocre or inferior kind: a constitutional government of a sort.
2. Of one kind or another: knew many folktales of sorts.
out of sorts
1. Slightly ill.
2. Irritable; cross: The teacher is out of sorts this morning.
sort of Informal
Somewhat; rather: “Gambling and prostitution . . . have been prohibited, but only sort of” (George F. Will).

1. the material of which anything is made: a hard, crystalline stuff.
2. material to be worked upon or to be used in making something: wood, steel, and other stuff for building.
3. material of some unspecified kind: a cushion filled with some soft stuff.
4. Chiefly British. woven material or fabric, esp. wool.
5. property, as personal belongings or equipment; things.
6. something to be swallowed, as food, drink, or medicine.
7. inward character, qualities, or capabilities: to have good stuff in one.
8. Informal. action or talk of a particular kind: kid stuff; Cut out the rough stuff.
9. worthless things or matter: to clean the stuff out of a closet.
10. worthless or foolish ideas, talk, or writing: a lot of stuff and nonsense. stuff   [stuhf] Show IPA
1. the material of which anything is made: a hard, crystalline stuff.
2. material to be worked upon or to be used in making something: wood, steel, and other stuff for building.
3. material of some unspecified kind: a cushion filled with some soft stuff.
4. Chiefly British. woven material or fabric, esp. wool.
5. property, as personal belongings or equipment; things.
6. something to be swallowed, as food, drink, or medicine.
7. inward character, qualities, or capabilities: to have good stuff in one.
8. Informal. action or talk of a particular kind: kid stuff; Cut out the rough stuff.
9. worthless things or matter: to clean the stuff out of a closet.
10. worthless or foolish ideas, talk, or writing: a lot of stuff and nonsense.

Hope this helps with our brainstorming March 29, 2010

Posted by Calvin in : Check it out, Proj3: ACTIVATE! , 2 comments

Since we seem to come to a point where we think we know where we want to go but do not know how (or reach a consensus), I thought of a framework that might help put in some constrains and basic parameters that we can build the rest on.

We are trying to construct an experience with the theme about Information. Firstly, there are at least 3 dimensions in any given experiences. They are as followed:

How challenging (not how difficult, more like how confrontational) is it to the users?
not at all – usually neutral or pleasant ideas or subject matters
somewhat – causes users to reflect and re-evaluate more readily than the two extremes
challenging, going against users believes/desires – can be offensive and unpleasant

How much does it actively engage users (how much does the experience initiates the engagement)?
completely passive – i.e. paintings in gallery
reach out to users somewhat
in-your-face, hog users full attention – i.e. loud Ad; most of the time users also have less control

How much control do the users have?
users have no control
some control, experience might change depends on users action
users dictate how the experience will be

Of course most things in life sit somewhere in the middle of the gradients.
Some extreme examples: the experience of a walk in the park is usually not challenging, quite passive, and users have complete control. Most of the time when the users have control, the experience is also less in-your-face. There are exceptions, like a debate between 2 people: it is challenging, really engaging, but the users also have control. The worse of all experiences is probably offensive, in-your-face, and users have no control: such as the experience of being tortured.

We can build our experience base on this framework. Do we want to challenge the users a bit? Do we actively engage them? If we do engage them how much control we are giving the users?

Do comment.

ideas thought up for the ORDER GROUP (wiki) March 25, 2010

Posted by Lucey En Chung Kim in : Check it out, Proj3: ACTIVATE!, Set+props: ORDER , add a comment

Hey everyone!

OK! So basically, we thought of going a bit “cave-man” and not use any computers and projectors for the second part of this experience.  This is because complications might occur with the user and us when they come to “edit” info.  We’ve decided that using Wikipedia as the setup was a good start, but in terms of what the Wikipedia page would be about, we thought that, as a whole class, we should come up with a topic.  Some topics we thought about for this Wiki-page were: celebrity gossip, a guestbook for the users’ opinion on ACTIVATE, information, and OCAD teacher review.  Again, feel free to throw out any good, specific topic ideas.  We want the users to be able to edit information as freely as they feel or add in their own knowledge about the topic.

To make this Wikipedia page come to life, we thought of using a big chalkboard or whiteboard for all the information to be easily editted on.  Then, paint big, long strips of paper to resemble the Wikipedia titlebar and sidebars and stick it on the chalkboard/whiteboard.  With an eraser and chalk/dry-marker provided, the user could freely edit/add as much as they want to the already existing information on the board.  Another option we came up with was a fill-in-the-blank so the user could write whatever they saw fit.  THEN we thought of magnets with various words to fill-in-the-blanks so the users have options of words to place on the board.

I think, to keep track of how information constantly changes, and kept in order, we should take a picture of the wikipedia page after every user goes through the experience.  We can then see how it went from point A to point B in the second section.

I hope I wasn’t too confusing with my words.

First draft concept for ACTIVATE! outlined March 21, 2010

Posted by Greg Van Alstyne in : Process/Blueprint team, Proj3: ACTIVATE! , add a comment

Hi all,
Revised version of the description I sent when emailing you all about teams and roles. The BLUEPRINT team in particular, but all of you in fact, should feel free to ITERATE and WORKSHOP this to add necessary detail, depth, and changes to this to make it work.

The user encounters a two-stage experience where they enter an immersive representation of the contemporary “swamp” of information. The overall sense is one of being surrounded and overwhelmed. Call it a space of “information chaos.” Details of audience interaction are currently in design development.

The user transitions from a space of chaos to a space of order. In this stage users are able to collaborate with each other and co-create some kind of results in real-time. One idea may be to build a Wikipedia page. The message and metaphor of this work suggests that order can come from chaos, through hard work, storytelling, collaboration — in a word, through design

Activate!: Swamped! March 19, 2010

Posted by Kyung Eun Park in : Check it out , add a comment

Here is our final idea “Swamped!”

Here is Wikipedia idea that we can add

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