process + design

We suggest: a catalytic data dinner

Folio article

The press response was unbelievably positive after the last Data Cuisine workshop at Sonar/Big Bang Data Exhibition in Barcelona. We got covered by a lot of international design blogs like Trendhunter, Citylab, Core77, Fastcodesign, We Make Money Not Art, CNet, Desingbook etc and print magazines (Folio/Mexico, Page /Germany), and we even made it into the major Costa Rican newspaper La Nación and Forbes Online. So what’s coming next for Data Cuisine?

We aim for a few more editions of the workshop, in order to continue to explore the medium for data representation in conjunction with local cuisines. We are also considering varying the format in the future. Next to the current model — a workshop — we are sure that a high-end data dinner would work well.

We found that the consumption of the food at the end of the workshops could have more emphasis or almost be developed as a separate event. A data dinner would not focus on the collaborative workshop process, but on the dining experience, in which the represented data would provide the topic for analysis and debate.

A data dinner could have any topic that is represented statistically, i.e. society, economics, science, culture and politics. Imagine a group of politicians, managers or scientists that is served several courses of a data dinner representing main issues in their respective field in such a sensual and surprising way. We believe that experience would stir a very inspirational debate opening up new perspectives and lines of thought.

When served the data dishes are not legible without explanation. Some look like ordinary dishes that reveal their meaning only by eating them. Others are very graphic and visual, but in general one has to be told what data they represent. In this way the dishes generate curiosity, which is already the ideal starting point for a discussion about the story and data ‘behind the dish’.

In its article on Data Cuisine, PAGE magazine recommended to anyone interested in it to request a workshop for his or her city. We add: any company, government or organisation that could imagine having a data dinner, please get in touch, too.

For the whole link list of press articles go to the project site.

open data workshop

What’s the taste of data? The Data Cuisine workshop in Barcelona

How does a tortilla taste whose recipe is based on well-being data in Spain? Would you rather like the cake based on the science funding 2005 or in 2013? Can you imagine how a fish dish can represent the emigrants from Spain to countries across the world?


The second Data Cuisine workshop took place in Barcelona on June 10-13, 2014  as part of the Big Bang Data exhibition at CCCB, and in coordination with Sónar.
For the culinary side of the project, we collaborated with Sebastian Velilla, a fantastic chef who has worked for the Alícia Foundation and is currently involved in the activities of the Torribera Food and Nutrition Campus of the University of Barcelona.datacuisine_BCN1
On four afternoons, twelve participants explored data of Barcelona, Catalonia and Spain with culinary means.
The first two afternoons were about getting into the methodology and coming up with quick ideas how to represent topics and data with dishes. We got some inspiration from our exclusive visit to Ferran Adrià’s BullipediaLab, an emerging space dedicated to the research of food creativity.
datacuisine_BCN2We spent the second half of the workshop in the kitchen, where the participants refined their recipes and made first tests and prototypes. On the last day, the participants, of which many worked in groups of two or three, produced their final dishes. The workshop ended with a presentation and tasting of all data dishes.
datacuisine_BCN3
Thanks go to José Luis de Vicente and Olga Subiros for bringing us over, and our fantastic participants, especially Luis Fraguada, who brought a food printer, which we will surely hear more of in the future.
All results of the Barcelona workshop and more images can be found on the Data Cuisine website. You can also follow us on Facebook or Twitter
. The Data Cuisine workshops are led by prozessagent Susanne Jaschko and Moritz Stefaner.


 

book process + art

Autopsy of an Island Currency published and available online

MoneyLab-digiflyer

Autopsy of an Island Currency was launched last weekend at Camp Pixelache in Helsinki. The book documents and reflects on the Suomenlinna Money Lab project––an artistic research project that tried to create an experimental local currency for the small island of Suomenlinna near Helsinki.

You can download the free PDF of the book here.

The general aim of the Money Lab was to engage with the specifics of a local setting by working with local people and creating a project that would generate interesting research and be beneficial to local dynamics. It was an ambitious attempt to explore and affect a unique place and its social dynamics through participatory art and design practice. The project was initiated by Susanne Jaschko / prozessagenten and produced by Pixelache, a cultural organisation in Helsinki, who together invited artist Christian Nold to develop a project for Helsinki.

The book describes the project’s process in detail trough a combination of first-person narration and ‘artefacts’, a wide selection of documented materials in the form of emails, notes, sketches, announcements and reflections. The publication also analyses the project’s challenges, such as the internal social dynamics and power structures of the island, which the Suomenlinna Money Lab project rendered visible. In addition, commissioned essays by authors Jaromil, Chris Lee, Pekko Koskinen, Antti Jauhiainen and Suzana Milevska contextualise the project and discuss subjects such as the challenges of participatory art, the value and hybrid nature of participatory projects, and the potentials of alternative money systems. The book is aimed at practitioners who work at the intersection of art, research and social action. It should be particularly useful for people working on alternative money models or on participatory projects that request a high degree of people’s commitment.

open data workshop

New edition of Data Cuisine Workshop in Barcelona

Print

We are very excited to announce a new edition of the Data Cuisine Workshop! It will take place in Barcelona, June 10-13, 2014, as part of the program around the Big Bang Data exhibition at CCCB, and in coordination with Sónar. For the culinary side of the project, we will collaborate with Sebastián Velilla, a master chef who has worked for the Fundació Alícia and the Academic Unit UB-Bullipèdia-CETT.

report symposium

Challenges and Limits of Collaboration

This year’s MutaMorphosis Conference in Prague was entitled Tribute to Uncertainty and offered a wide programme of sessions, but browsing the program one could not ignore the attention that the organisers had paid to what is going on in the field of art + science and in particular Bio Art. I had been invited to speak about Challenges of Participation in a session that was similarly called The Limits and Challenges of Collaboration and that was curated by Manuela Naveau from Ars Electronica. Together with me on the panel were Galia Offri and her partner Mushon Zer-Aviv as well as Mirko Tobias Schaefer, Assistant Professor for New Media & Digital Culture Utrecht University. Mirko is also the author of Bastard Culture! How User Participation Transforms Cultural Production at Amsterdam University Press.

In Prague, Mirko gave an analysis of participatory culture limiting user agency, focussing on social media. In his talk he revealed the discrepancy between social media’s official narrative of being participatory systems and their true nature of limiting participation and massively channelling user activities. He spoke about social media’s ephemeral design elements: Like, View, Endorse, Favourite, ReTweet, RePin, and how they lower the threshold to become an “active” user. On-line activity is minimised to clicking a button, but gets maximum attention. Social media also initiate the economics of rewards. Mirko went on discussing elements of corporate control limiting user activities such as moderation, automated, distributed (through ‘flag’ and ‘report’) and human content review. The final part of his presentation centred on the expansion of the public sphere through social media and the problem of corporations shaping policies for this new public space.

From Wikipedia Illustrated:Hikikomori, literally "pulling away, being confined", i.e., "acute social withdrawal") is a Japanese term to refer to the phenomenon of reclusive people who have chosen to withdraw from social life, often seeking extreme degrees of isolation and confinement because of various personal and social factors in their lives.

Galia and Mushon presented their project Wikipedia Illustrated. This project entails the illustration of 26 Wikipedia articles, a blog to share the process, a book and a number of workshops. Through these activities the authors hope to draft a new path for a visual free culture. And indeed, Wikipedia looks like it can benefit from such artistic activism. Wikipedia pages don’t allow much visual information and while the textual information usually goes through various versions and updates, graphics don’t permit this kind of collaborative process. So it’s individual authors who insert images which are accepted by the community or dismissed. But the ‘simple’ act of creating and adding images that communicate the content or theme of a Wikipedia article in an illustrative and metaphorical way opens up a discussion of how much visual poetry Wikipedia can take before it looses its reputation as a factual medium and if contributors can change its rules. This project shows quite plainly and painfully how little room Wikipedia and similar collaborative platforms offer for reformation.