Final Reflection

For most of the week, I didn’t like this project. I think that this was because none of us were really the biggest fans of our intervention. All the way through Tuesday we hadn’t carried out either of our two interventions, and we barely had enough pillows, I thought, to carry them both out.

For most of the day today, I really felt that the group was at a disconnect and that we as a whole didn’t really wanna work on the project.  I was getting worried about how it would turn out and whether it would really even be actually finished.

Now that the day is over and all that we can do has been done, I feel a lot more confident in both my efforts and the efforts of a few others in the group. The couple expansions of the original interventions I participated in with a few other group members really made me a lot more confident in whether the intervention was a success or not. I believe that the intervention at Moka was more successful than that at the King Alfred Statue, but more effort was put into the one at Moka since it was our original research site and our main focus as a group.

If we could’ve gotten more organized more quickly, I would’ve loved to try to expand more on the intervention at the statue. That is the one thing I wish that was done differently within this group project, better organization and communication throughout the group as a whole.

All in all, I am proud of the fact that we truly were able to intervene on the space, and I think the thing that proves it is the picture of the people reading our “Uncomfortable Questions in a Comfortable Space” questions and talking about them. I think the fact that we got people to think about something without automatically thinking it is an art project (especially being in the art building) is definitely a success, and I think that specific activity we carried out really showed the way the space can possible cycle being comfortable and then being uncomfortable and then being comfortable again. That was the moment when I realized that we had succeeded in this intervention and felt confident in what we had done.

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Interventions: Final Post

This week, I set up a bunch of pillows to be made, pinning them and laying out fabric so that they could be sewed up and stuffed. Here is what that looked like:

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That big pile of fabric might not look like much, but it is, in fact, at least 20 potential pillows.

Since I have no sewing experience, I asked my group to take these and make the pillows. Only 8 were actually made, but we worked with what we had, which was 2 seemingly broken sewing machines and not much free time. Here are our pillows:

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We now have to actually intervene on our spaces. Of course our first, is the Moka Joka. We wanted to expand on the comfort of the area, and pillows seemed like one of the only comfortable things that Joka lacked. We also attempted to ask what ways Moka could be improved, but this method of asking for written responses didn’t give us as many suggestions as we hoped:

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Some responses we got when we asked about the pillows were the following:

“I was cuddling a pillow earlier, that was cool.”

“I like them”

“I think they’re awesome cause there aren’t many pillows and it makes it more comfy for nappers and workers.”

“They were a delightful surprise that comforts my day.”

“On a scale of one to ten, during my nap the pillow was a 9.”

To expand on this idea, some of the group also wanted to attempt to make comfortable uncomfortable. We wanting to take comfortable to the extent to which it wouldn’t be comfortable anymore. To do this, we tried to make the ultimate “comfortable throne” with two things: our pillows and tape. This is how that turned out:

Next, we decided to ask personal, uncomfortable questions. We wrote them, and then decided to even answer them with each other. It was a little uncomfortable, but we made it comfortable at the same time, so it made us realize you can go from a comfortable space, to an uncomfortable feeling, and back to a comfortable feeling. This is how that went:

We even decided to leave the questions in the space, and caught some people answering them:

Lastly, we decided to leave all the pillows in a chair, offering them if anyone wanted. We aren’t sure how this will turn out as of now, but we decided to do it anyway:

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We chose our second space to be the area around the King Alfred Statue because it seems to be a place where everyone walks by, yet nobody seems to stop and hangout at. We asked some people to come and sit by the statue with out pillows, and whether they would want this are to be a place where they could come relax and be comfortable anytime. Their responses differed, especially because in the winter, no place outdoors will be very comfortable no matter how many pillows there are. We also got the response that because so many people constantly pass through, that it wouldn’t be a great spot to sit if you want to relax. Some people also said they would, so that they wouldn’t have to walk all the way to the dorm so that they could sit and relax.

Here is what the space looked like:

(they were actually doing homework here, for real)

Overall, it was a lot more difficult to intervene at King Alfred but expanding on our intervention at the Moka Joka felt very  successful.

Interventions: Post 3

On Tuesday, I immersed myself in the world that is Moka Joka. I decided to do a lot of my individual research on this day and my group also got a lot of our group research done, as well.

The first thing I decided to do as individual research was to sit in the lounge and count how many people came in and out, how many people walked by, and what those people were doing. I began my research at 12:10, and ended at 1:20. When I started, there was 3 other people in the lounge other than me. I began tallying as people came in and out, came, left, and came back, and also those who just walked past. In total, within the hour and 10 minutes that I kept track, 20 people came into the Moka Joka lounge. Meanwhile, 23 people left, meaning that by the end of my research I was the only one left in the room. The busy hallway next to the lounge brought exactly 85 people through the space, showing how busy the area is and how much traffic it gets.

During the slow times in this research, I decided to completely recreate the message board that is hanging in the lounge. Although I couldn’t get the proportions of some doodles and writing right, I managed to fit every piece of information that is on the board on one page in my sketchbook, and it looks pretty close to the board, as well. I actually really enjoyed carrying out this form of research because I got to try to recreate exactly how other students wrote something or drew something and got to take the non-permanent white board and place it forever in its current form in my sketch book. It feels as though I took this moment in time at Joka and captured it in the form of the message board.

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Next, I decided to take my group’s first research project and my first individual research product and combine them. I printed both our group’s random story that we came up with and my descriptions about the smells and sounds of Joka. I cut both of them up into individual sentences or groups of sentences and put them together into one weird story that doesn’t really make all that much sense. I like how it doesn’t make too much sense though, because you can read both the two stories as separate things, or take it all in as one wacky story.

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Next, I did a painting out of coffee and ink. I sat at the counter of Joka with a cup of coffee, a cup of ink, and a cup of water. I painted random things that I saw and liked. I have always wanted to try painting with something other than paint, but simply never got around to it, so I took this as a good opportunity.

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While I was creating this painting, I talked to my friends who were with me who works at Joka. This is the information I got out of them:

Do you like working at Joka?

Amy: Yes I like working there.

Maggie: Yes

Is it worth not getting paid?

Amy: It keeps me busy on Thursdays, I don’t have any other classes so it makes me feel like I get something done in my day.

Maggie: I get a lot of work done while I’m there so yeah.

Would you work more often if you could?

Both: No

What made you want to work at Joka?

Amy: I don’t know, I did that stuff at home so I wanted to.

Maggie: Free coffee.

Whats the first word you think of when you think of Joka?

Amy: Coffee

Maggie: Moka

Next, I took pictures of micro-views that I feel make Moka Joka what it is. It is things that people don’t necessarily notice, but when they do, they enjoy it and see how unique of an area it is.

Next, I decided to make a sculptural piece. I had a lot of fun making this piece.

Next, I created a blueprint of Joka from memory.

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These are the last 8 of my Individual research activities. The first two are on my last post.

Interventions: Post 2

We were told to research the new space we picked (Moka Joka) both as a group and individually within an hour. 

Individually, I took a lot of pictures and decided to write about the sounds and smells I experienced:

I currently smell dish soap, and hear people talking and paper moving. I also hear Bri and Mackenzie taking rubbings of the surfaces within the room. There are dishes being put away and I think I hear a vacuum running. It is pretty quiet in here right now because it is only 9:15. Only a couple people have walked by since I started listening. The vacuum is getting louder, and it is almost the only thing I hear going on, other than a door that just shut and the occasional conversation or dish being set down. I also hear the sink running on the other side of the wall of the Joka, since I am currently in the lounge area on the couch. I also hear my keys typing whenever I document another sound I hear. The smell of dish soap has gone away, and I don’t really smell anything in particular right now. The vacuum just stopped and I hear keys jingling in someones pocket. I also hear more small things, such as a spoon hitting the side of the mug and a page turning. There is music playing really quietly from the Joka that I didn’t notice when the vacuum was running. I hear the pencil on the paper of other people doing research in this room, and a faint humming just started but I don’t know what it is from. The vacuum noise started again so it is muffling out other sounds again. I hear a stool moving over in the Joka now, and still hear the spoon against the edge of the mug since I know know that sound is there.

 

As a group, we decided to make a story together:

Today at the Moka Joka, I tripped and hit my head. And when I hit my head, I couldn’t help but poop my pants. I went to the bathroom. I cleaned myself. Then I sat down for a bite. I decided to order everything on the menu. The barista told me no. I got so mad that I got up to walk away and I tripped and fell again. I said bitch, you made me fall. He just stared at me. He insulted me. He laughed. That made me more angry I started to cry. So I decided to go to the couch and take a nap. I fell into a deep slumber that lasted 10,000 years. I was very surprised when I woke up. I started playing the piano. I realized that dinosaurs returned. Then I realized I didn’t know how to play piano. Then I stood on the piano and smashed it. This disrupted a dinosaur nearby and it started to chase me. I realized this wasn’t a Jurassic Park, It was a Jurusik Park and a Maddi-saurus Rex was chasing me. I fell again. I got back up and sat on the couch. I hid behind the couch. To my surprise, the Maddi-saurus Rex couldn’t lift the couch. I survived because she couldn’t get to me. The end.

 

Interventions: Post 1

As a group, we came up with these spaces as possible places to explore:

Binns Merrill
King Alfred
Football field
Old Miller building
Miller theatre
Observatory
Herrick
Hairpin
The traffic light
Cohen
Openhym
Tennis courts
Alumni hall parking lot
Kanakadea
Terra cotta
Moka joka
Courtyard (area around King Alfred Statue)
Harder courtyard
Repo

These are our strategies of research:

Rubbings from surfaces
Walk perimeter
Picture every chair
Focus on smells
Focus on sounds
Map area
Ask people about it
Count people in each room
Draw every window
Sleep there
Skate through it
Crawl through it
Write about it
Take pictures of people
Paint people
Draw people
Listen to people
Take the temperature
Air pressure
Humidity
Walk through it
Sit on it
Test the echo
Scale the walls/poles
Find the highest point
Write a screenplay about it while you’re in it
Weigh objects
Find out the buildings usefulness/purpose
Invite as many people as possible into space
How many people are interested in the space
Pass flyers about an event in space
Strip in the space
Record yourself walking through
Find out hours of operation

These are ways in which we could effect or disrupt the space:

Kill someone
Throw a chair
Sit down on the table for an hour
Block the door
Run up and down the stairs as loud as possible
Make a human wall
Play human knot
Block windows with paper