Squatting Supermarkets at La Sapienza in Rome
FakePress, Art is Open Source and The Hub Roma
in collaboration with
the “Multimedia Technologies and Communications Experimentations” course at the “Ludovico Quaroni” Faculty of Architecture at Rome’s University “La Sapienza”, Industrial Design Department
the “Management of Non profit Organizations” course at the Faculty of Economics at the “Tor Vergata” University
are happy to invite you to the lecture:
Artistic fundamentals, eco-sustainability, market: from Shoptivism to the Active Consumer.
Who: Oriana Persico and Cary Hendrickson (AOS/FakePress), Dario Carrera and Ivan Fadini (The Hub Roma/Faculty of Economics, Tor Vergata), Ilaria Bassi, Vanessa D’Acquisto, Piergiorgio Malfa, Vittoria Mauro (research group at the “Management of Non Profit Organizations” course, Tor Vergata), Salvatore Iaconesi (visiting professor)
Where: Faculty of Architecture “Ludovico Quaroni”, via E.Gianturco 2 (Rome) – room G 11 [ MAP ]
When: May 4th, 2010 – from 9am to 12pm
A radical version of a marketplace, a point of sale in augmented reality, Squatting Supermarkets tells the tale of the evolution of our daily realities, entering the live and pulsating heart of consumism. Looking at products on the shelves, choosing, paying, debts, persuasion and seduction, relations with logos, messages and other people. Buying is an experience that fills our daily lives, built through images, suggestions and strategies that are so complex that they systematically evade the perception of the final user. Technologies can be used to create new spaces for action/communication, and to overlay them onto our ordinary reality, thus creating new action/communication spaces, allowing new possibilities for interaction and fruition: ubiquitous, accessible, emergent and polyphonic, emotional and relational. Squatting Supermarkets narrates this possibility: an augmented reality space that is technologically layered to everyday life, an interstitial marketplace living in squat on the physical and immaterial infrastructures.
Presented for the first time at the Piemonte Share Festival in 2009, Squatting Supermarkets has two souls: a site-specific installation and an innovative technology, iSee. The installation reproduces an interactive supermarket in which the widespread interconnection network defining products’ histories and stories can become explicit and accessible. The techniques of traceability and control are transformed into their ecosystemic, narrative and poetic versions: information is not only for corporations anymore. By overlaying and integrating codes coming from barcodes, tags, RFIDs, credit cads, financial tranactions.
Grabbing a product becomes an immersive experience with its story, and the possibility of writing a part of it: moving hands, drawing gestures, exposing our points of view and our emotions. Products animate, becoming a space for expression, a network of relations, a domain for possibility and opportunity. Distributed storytelling practices in which the hidden stories of producers and consumers come in contact. The access door to these domains are the logos. iSee, the technological heart of the installation is a mobile application based on image recognition and computer vision techniques.
Framing the product on the camera, an image processing algorithm identifies the logo, allowing the user to access an additional set of information coming from a plurality of sources. Narrative galaxies (open, emergent, multi-author) connected to p2p thematic social networks layered over products.
Logos become wikis, open communication infrastructures, distributed social networks, p2p ecosystems.
The Project is based on the analisys of the contemporary technological/economic context. On one side, environmentalism and eco-sustainability are issues that are acknowledged as being among the globally most important drivers in piloting the shopping choices of large parts of the population. On the other side, statistics demonstrate that progressively large numbers of individuals search for information on social networks befre purchasing commodities and services, and that the users of last-generation mobile devices are steadily growing by the numbers.
In all this, enterprises start feeling the need to confront a globally interconnected communication and relation system, emergent, polyphonic, in which the acquisition and the maintenance of a “good reputation” goes through complex social and cultural dynamics that are progressively more chaotic. The “Company” is not the sole center of communication and of the shaping of its corporate identity.
On may 4th 2010, from 9am to 12pm, FakePress’ interaction design lab will analyze the possibilities for expression and interaction enabled by the shopping based narratives offered by Squatting Supermarkets under an artistic/performative point of view and by iSee under the perspectives of technology and infrastructures.
Oriana Persico will confront the themes related to the installation, introducing the artistic statement,
Cary Hendrickson will focus on the themes of eco-susteinability, social responsibility and on the governance of related processes;
The research group of the “Management of Non profit Organizations” course at the Tor Vergata University coordinated by Dario Carrera and Ivan Fadini will expose the first results coming from the research titled “Active Consumer: from Movements to Shopping Based Publishing“.
How are consumers sensible to the environment and to critical consumism? How do they relate to the opinions generated on social media and on brand reputation created through User Generated Content? How widespread are smartphones? How many individuals would be willing to use a mobile application such as iSee? Who could finance it? What are the possible business models?
The theoretical and artistic premises, the analisys on eco-sustainability and the market scenarios will be used by the students of the course at the Faculty of Architecture to create a series of project works focused on the evolutions of the iSee platform and on the creation of a site specific installation to be implemented in a public commercial space, integrating multiple skills and points of view and, most of all, creating multidisciplinary and inter-university collaboration paths among students and faculties to achieve common goals.
The project works will be presented together with the research during the Open Day at the end of the course.
Entrance to the lecture is free and open to all.
Squatting Supermarkets/iSee is a co-production by FakePress/Art is Open Source. Special project at the Piemonte Share Festival 2009, winner of the “Zero Impact Technlogy” prize offered by the Environment Park in Turin. Squatting Supermarkets/iSee is part of the SMIR project under the artistic direction of The Sharing:
http://www.smirproject.eu/ (site available next week)
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