Buttons / Living small / Gender and wallpaper

* Via dotmancando: The Buttons, a project from Nitipak Samsen which explores a range of conceptual controlling mechanisms and the ‘intercontrol’ of the planets and humans. Some of these mechanisms include:
Sharing resources: asking permission to use shared resources.
I’m watching you: restraint or temptation?
Consequences: reminding us of the fragility of the environment.
Does scale matter?:small button – big consequences or big button – small consequences?
Footprint indicator: physically feeling the consequences of an action.
Weighted waiting: users’ efficiency (time) vs. planet’s efficiency (energy).
Limited resources: constraint or discipline?

* Urbanverse thinks about living large and small. Homes have got bigger in America for several decades – more space to fill, more expensive to heat. So should living small be the new living large?But small isn’t always beautiful – it can be “scrimping, miserly, and small-minded”; small can lack the critical mass to do anything. Instead of evaluating homes by size, maybe they need to be designed to fit seasons, moods and activities: Cindy says, I’d rather have the most elegant, sustainable home that fits my aspirations and habits and those of my family. A house of my dreams is not too small, or too big. It’s just so, a lived-in fit.

* “Made for a domestic setting where gender roles are played out, wallpaper is the perfect medium to highlight and question these repeating patterns”. If you’re around Manchester (as we are this weekend, training our final household), go and see the ‘Walls Are Talking’ exhibition at the Whitworth Art Gallery, on until January 2011. It’s a fantastic show which explores wallpaper’s relation to sexuality and gender: If you still want more wallpaper after that, the Whitworth also has its own wallpaper collection including samples from the 17th century up until the present day, and pieces by William Morris, Voysey and Crane.

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