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Solve et Coagula 2018

Dozierender: Clemens Winkler

Coop Himmelb(l)au in Basel, 1971

We would start our journey in Interaction Design in a manner of Solve (Dissolving) and Coagulate (Coagulation) to stimulate first thoughts on the role of design, human and technology. How will we might become a designer and what do we face in the university as well as the outside world? Therefore, we will investigate in designing within room and space - discussing about our local surroundings and global interdependencies. We will dive through different episodes of becoming an Interaction Designs – adequate to the stages of becoming in Alchemist – with all the expectations, experiences we learn, and reflections and actions on it. This seminar should give a fundamental base for the upcoming semesters interweaving theory and practice into discourse.

Part I: Solve et coagula – Dissolving and solidifying

We are dealing with our role as prospective Interaction Designers through the "Alchemic Stages of Knowing and Becoming".

19. September 2018. Sensing
 the Environment. Everything originates out of a certain nature

time: , 9,00am (approximately ending 6pm)
location: ZHdK, main entrance (Tram station Toni Areal)

Equipment: pen, notebook, mobile phone, camera, bag, raincoat and good shoes;

Tour: Link Google Maps

We take a walk through the city of Zurich and develop ways of observation. Through the technique of Promenadology developed by Swiss sociologist and design theorist Lucius Burckhardt, a vivid attitude towards perception and reality arises. This gives us the opportunity for an in-depth understanding of urban space, its infrastructures and interactions, and thus the basis for a human- or community-centered design. Let´s see how everything originates out of a certain nature.


24. September 2018. The Human being. First stage of becoming an Interaction Designer.

time: 10.30am - 12.30pm
location: seminar room 4.T31

What means being human in the world? In this essential of all questions Immanuel Kant´s three fundamental questions arose: What can I know? What should I do? What can I hope? Before we deal with the shaping of our world, let us examine the question of what humanity means at all. Is there a sufficient answer to this question and where do we find a systematic discourse?

We will invite students from 2nd year and talk about their view on topics we have discussed beforehand.

Questions: What means environment, human, affordance, technology, art, design, user?


01. October 2018. Human behaviour. Second stage of becoming an Interaction Designer.

time: 10.30am - 12.30pm
location: seminar room 4.T31

We discuss concepts such as "embodiment", "mind-body dualism", "education", "affordance", "affect", and take a quick look at the Skinner Box. We talk about the design and readability of incentives in our environment and ask: Is there a difference between behaviour, social behaviour, and conditioned behaviour? What do we have to consider as a designer when we first know this difference?

We will invite students from 3rd year and talk about their view on topics we have discussed beforehand.

Questions: What means human behaviour, embodiment, mediation and thinking through design?


15. October 2017. Thinking and Action.  Third stage of becoming an Interaction Designer.

time: 10.30am - 12.30pm
location: seminar room 4.T31

What means consciousness? How do we think, what a personified experience is and how can we maneuver between atomism and holistic world experience? What is certain, is Bruno Labour: "As soon as theory has performed its analytical section and the sound of the breaking bones is heard, it is no longer possible to explain how we are to construct and how to live. Then there is only an attempt to subdue subjects and objects, words, and the world, society, nature, mind, and matter, all of which are mere shards, which are made to prevent any harmony."

We will invite students from the Master Interaction Design program about their view on topics we have discussed beforehand.

Questions: What means thinking, consciousness, control, human experience and responsibilty?


22. October 2018/29. October 2018, The Social, Networks, Economies and Space for Experiences. 
Fourth stage of becoming an Interaction Designer.

time: 10.30 - 12.30pm
location: seminar room 4.T31

What happens, if relationships between people change and what might this be related to technology? We are trying to develop an idea about what we call the social, about networks and the role of design.

We will visit the design studio (former students of the Interaction Design programme) Interactive Things, Zürich

Questions: What means social, frameworks, economies, cyber culture, surveillance?


Part II: Writing Practice 

05. November 2018, We are imagining our career path and possible future success as Interaction Designer.

time: 10.30am - 12.30pm
location: seminar room 4.T31

We will be mapping our Alchemic Journey and furthermore investigate into academic writing.

03_Energy-harvesting & Self-Actuated Textiles for the home- Designing with New Materials & Technologies.pdf

26. November 2018, We present our short stories and fictions about the everyday life of tomorrow.

time: 10.30am - 12.30pm
location: Seminarraum 4.T31

We will write about the experience of what has happened or what might become real in the future through individual scopes. We will investigate towards approaches, questions and points of interest to our future field of activity.