United Micro Kingdoms, 2012/13
What if... Beijing International Design Triennial, 2011
St Etienne Design Biennale, 2010
Between Reality and the Impossible, 2010
Wellcome Windows, 2010
EPSRC IMPACT! Exhibition, 2010
Designs for an Overpopulated Planet: Foragers, 2009
What If..., 2009
After Life Euthanasia Device, 2009
Work in progress, 2009
Do you want to replace the existing normal? 2007/08
Technological Dreams Series: No.1, Robots, 2007
Spymaker, 2006/07
Evidence Dolls, 2005
Designs for Fragile Personalities in Anxious Times, 2004/05
Is This Your Future? 2004
BioLand, 2002/03
Placebo Project, 2001
Park Interactives, 2000
MSET, 2000/01
Project #26765: Flirt, 1998-00
Weeds, Aliens and Other Stories, 1994-98
Hertzian Tales, 1994-97
Designs for Fragile Personalities in Anxious Times, 2004/05
Huggable Atomic Mushroom
Hideaway Type 1
Hideaway Type 1
Hideaway Type 2
Hideaway Type 2
Hideaway Type 2
Hideaway Type 3
Hideaway Type 2 -- Maya
Hideaway Type 1
Hideaway Type 2
Hideaway Type 3
Dunne & Raby / Michael Anastassiades

In the field of design, users and consumers are usually characterised in narrow and stereotypical ways resulting in a world of manufactured objects that reflects an impoverished view of what it means to be human. This project set out to explore and develop a design approach that would lead to products that embodied an understanding of the consumer/user as a complex existential being.

To achieve this the project focused on irrational but real anxieties such as the fear of alien abduction or nuclear annihilation. Rather than ignoring them, as most design does, or amplifying them to create paranoia, we treated the phobias as though they were perfectly reasonable and designed objects to humour their owners.

The resulting objects are concrete examples of a very different way of designing for how people really are rather than how they are supposed to be. They explore how psychological realism can be applied to designed objects.

1. Hideaway Furniture is for people who are afraid of being abducted. Each opens in a surprising way without disturbing objects displayed on its surface. The poses encourage the occupant to feel in control, proud and comfortable, the opposite of a foetal position. There are three versions.
 
2. The Huggable Atomic Mushrooms are for people afraid of nuclear annihilation. Like treatments for phobias they allow for gradual exposure through different sizes.

B&W Photography: Jason Evans
Specialist Carpentry: Ben Legg
Specialist Technical Advice: Nick Williamson
Pattern design/cutting: David England
Seamstress: Anja Huttunen

The Huggable Atomic Mushroom is in the permanent collection of MoMA, New York.

Hideaway Type 2 is in the permanent collection of Frac Ile-de-France, Paris.




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