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Aesthetics & Temporality of Shared Memory

Christina Bauer

MFA Interaction Design

Project information

This thesis focuses on the aesthetics of shared memories, specifically on how additional insights and information might trigger and alter our perception of a shared incident and experience. Delving deeper into the aesthetics of human recollections might help us gain a better understanding and appreciation for ourselves as well as for one another.

Even though memory is something individual, most of it is shared (or at the very least linked) with others and is dependent on external influences and how we interpret them. Our recollection fully relies on what we consciously and unconsciously choose to pay attention and attach value to. Even if we have shared the same moment, our memories may differ in terms of the facts we recall and how we interpret that information. To explore this topic further, I decided to focus on the aesthetics and meaning of shared memories and their ability to alter our perceptions.

Inspiration & Methods



For me, design is about asking questions. It was critical for me to maintain a poetic and experimental approach throughout the process to grasp the subject on a more abstract level and not lose sight of the aesthetics of memories and their interplay.

I started by participating in neuroscientific courses, to understand how memory is manifested in the brain and the body. Throughout this rather scientific start, I realised that I had to let go of the idea of knowing everything and embrace the tools and abilities I, as an interaction designer, bring to the table. Therefore, I have decided to focus on an abstract and intangible aspect of recollection; the act of creating shared narratives and their abilities to shift perspectives. To find orientation throughout this new space, I have conducted various experimental explorations, workshops, interviews, and co-creative sessions which led me to my final output.



Result


Ours is an immersive experience which opens up a space for family, friends or people who simply shared the same moment to create a shared narrative. It emphasizes and includes embodied interaction in order to create an environment open for explorative engagement and conversation by creating a shared narrative through sharing memories. The overall goal was to encourage the users to engage in more self-reflection about the lived through experience, listening and embracing discrepancies within the different narratives and storylines and therefore building stronger bonds and a better understanding between and for another.



Project information

This thesis focuses on the aesthetics of shared memories, specifically on how additional insights and information might trigger and alter our perception of a shared incident and experience. Delving deeper into the aesthetics of human recollections might help us gain a better understanding and appreciation for ourselves as well as for one another.

Even though memory is something individual, most of it is shared (or at the very least linked) with others and is dependent on external influences and how we interpret them. Our recollection fully relies on what we consciously and unconsciously choose to pay attention and attach value to. Even if we have shared the same moment, our memories may differ in terms of the facts we recall and how we interpret that information. To explore this topic further, I decided to focus on the aesthetics and meaning of shared memories and their ability to alter our perceptions.

Inspiration & Methods



For me, design is about asking questions. It was critical for me to maintain a poetic and experimental approach throughout the process to grasp the subject on a more abstract level and not lose sight of the aesthetics of memories and their interplay.

I started by participating in neuroscientific courses, to understand how memory is manifested in the brain and the body. Throughout this rather scientific start, I realised that I had to let go of the idea of knowing everything and embrace the tools and abilities I, as an interaction designer, bring to the table. Therefore, I have decided to focus on an abstract and intangible aspect of recollection; the act of creating shared narratives and their abilities to shift perspectives. To find orientation throughout this new space, I have conducted various experimental explorations, workshops, interviews, and co-creative sessions which led me to my final output.



Result


Ours is an immersive experience which opens up a space for family, friends or people who simply shared the same moment to create a shared narrative. It emphasizes and includes embodied interaction in order to create an environment open for explorative engagement and conversation by creating a shared narrative through sharing memories. The overall goal was to encourage the users to engage in more self-reflection about the lived through experience, listening and embracing discrepancies within the different narratives and storylines and therefore building stronger bonds and a better understanding between and for another.