While a material’s past can be revealed, its future must be speculated upon, designed for, and enacted. This research explored both the hidden past and potential futures of materials as an impetus for design inquiry. The goal was to investigate current applications of materials, to expose and to communicate their history, and to design proposals for their alternative futures. In examining materials from human and non-human viewpoints, we questioned the implications of future technologies, environmental changes, and cultural developments that might deplete some materials and create surpluses for others. In order to design for material futures, one needs to understand a material’s past.
Lead Investigator: Zaneta Hong | Students Assistants: Andrew Ashcraft, Eleanor Birle, Kenneth Cheng, Dimitra Grigoriou, Nicholas Grimes, Athena Loi, Karl Jon Sparrman, Christian Storch, Jinlong Yang, Xingyu Yang