THE DESIGN ABACUS
Commissioned by: Public Room. Center for Design and Innovation. Skopje (Macedonia)
Part of the project: Understanding Territoriality
The Design Abacus has been launched during the Skopje Design Week 2016 and is currently open for visits.
Based on the on-site question 'How do people interact with culture locally?' the Design Abacus can be seen as a counting frame that allows you to rearrange geometry instead of adding numbers. The installation started as a site-related challenge. The Public Room, a relatively new design establishment for the city of Skopje, aims to connect the larger public to the development of design and visual arts. As an industry on its own, the creative industry may pose certain boundaries between maker and receiver, and these limitations may impact the public's the desire to engage with cultural activities. As a process of abstraction the creative outcome may remain at times elliptic to the non-trained eye.
The Design Abacus exposes the creative process and invites the public to participate in it as in a game of chance. Pulling or pushing the cantilever based segments of the installation may or may not lead to a recognizable geometry. This is all left to the viewer to decide. The installation breaks the 'fourth wall' of visual representation by decomposing the visual element into its 'ingredients'. One border of interpretation and understanding of design is proposed to be diminished by the installation's impossibility to exist without participation.