Design and the Elastic Mind

If anyone happens to be dropping in to New York over the next couple of months be sure to pop in to MOMA and check out the new exhibition: Design and the Elastic Mind. It has been curated by Paola Antonelli,, who previously put together the Safe exhibition in 2006, and has much inspired this Designing Safe Living research programme at Lancaster university. As cited in the exhibition text “Design and the Elastic Mind explores the reciprocal relationship between science and design in the contemporary world by bringing together design objects and concepts that marry the most advanced scientific research with attentive consideration of human limitations, habits, and aspirations.” I was overwhelmed by the intensity of information and the plethora of objects, photographs, video, visuals and text on show which demanded my time and concentration. There is no way any could summarise or spin this into an easy bitesize review and give it justice. So if you dont get to go to MOMA , just make sure you spend 30 mins per lunch hour reading through the online exhibition.

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Taryn Simon @ The Photographers Gallery

taryn simon avian quarantine facility
Avian Quarantine Facility, The New York Animal Import Center, Newburgh, New York. European Finches seized upon illegal importation into the U.S. and African Gray Parrots in quarantine.

Currently at the photographers gallery in west central london, is a wonderful exhibition by Taryn Simon entitled: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar. This exhibition is a culmination of four years extensive research and documentation of the unseen and inaccessible hidden below the surface of national identity. She has managed to infiltrate various hidden institutions of diverse subjects from across the realms of science, government, medicine, entertainment, nature, security, and religion. These range from Cryopreservation Units, Scientology’s screening rooms, fireworks and explosive devices testing sites, HIV laboratories, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Contraband Rooms, a Nuclear Waste Encapsulation and Storage Facility, an Avian Quarantine Facility, Marijuana research units, the CIA art gallery, etc.