Design Crossing


Clearly I haven’t kept up with my 60 days sketch project; I got really sucked into reading on my topic.. Oh well..

Our semester started yesterday, and I can tell that with all the work ahead its going to fly by (thankfully). We started our first design project today (during orientation!), which is a group proposal for the Tasmeem design conference. Working in groups is extremely difficult, but it seemed so much easier with the guidance of our new associate director. We brainstormed for a while, put all our ideas on a board and then as a group we clustered those ideas into meaningful proposals. I was the only one to break out and put my own cluster together, and it was accepted. So tomorrow we are taking our four new directions and “exploding them” as Paolo likes to say. I’m supper excited because that means I have a one in four chance of having my idea being chosen by the group as our proposal.. But even if it doesnt get chosen I’ll be just as happy to exhibit work in the conference within the scope of the other proposals since they are all looking really interesting at the moment.

Know Your Jinn

Well, here it is.. my first MFA project..

In my fabrication class we were supposed to learn how to use the laser cutter and the vinyl cutter while producing an installation piece for the lab. I really wanted to try something I had never done before, so I drew up all sorts of crazy installation ideas, but nothing really seemed like my work. In the end I did what I always do and looked at my surroundings for inspiration. One of my closest friends was telling me how their mom had been attacked by Jinn in their house. This friend went on to tell me that they bought a pigeon that is supposed to eat the Jinn as protection for the family. The whole situation really made me think about our culture.. and being surrounded by westerners everyday I wondered how odd it would be to talk to them openly about what my friend was going through.. so I decided to start a Jinn awareness campaign to help expats understand our culture better. The image above is the installation I made for our lab, its supposed to be minimalistic (the bird has Surat AlKursee etched on it for protection against the Jinn). Click here to see the stickers from the awareness campaign hanging all over VCUQ.

I know the project is kind of quirky, but it was really nice to step away from what I normally do.

Some fun things that have come from the project include seeing images of my stickers as chat icons for various students, being told that some students are freaked out by the campaign, and finally being approached by a colleague to possibly work with them on an illustration book.

A memory for pain, stored in the spine

Science is amazing:

“When we learn new things, PKMzeta shows up at the gaps between neurons (synapses) and strengthens the connections between them. These bolstered synapses are the physical embodiment of our memories, and they are fragile things. It turns out that we need to continually recreate PKMzeta at synapses to keep our memories alive. If the protein disappears, so do our memories. Unlike the text of a book or the bytes of a hard disk, the information stored in our brain is constantly on the verge of being erased.”

Read full article here.