DesignMind @ Melbourne Design Week

It was exciting to see DesignMind featuring alongside Deakin staff and students from the School of Architecture and Built Environment when Melbourne Design Week expanded to Geelong for the first time earlier this year.

The Vital Signs: Smart city, living city exhibition was coordinated by the School of Architecture, MInd Lab and DesignMind in collaboration with the City of Greater Geelong, the Geelong Gallery and Geelong Regional Libraries.

Contributing to ongoing discussions on Geelong’s ‘Clever and Creative’ future, the three-part exhibition explored ‘Possible, Plausible and Alternative Futures’.
It featured drawings, sketches and models from students of Deakin’s Urbanheart Surgery design studio, a range of visionary illustrations about Geelong in the year 2050 and 2100 composed by a team of five postgraduate architecture students, as well as a range of key projects developed within the University’s MInD Lab and the Live+Smart Research Lab.
‘It was absolutely fantastic to see members of the Geelong community engaging with the exhibits both at the Geelong Library and also the Geelong Gallery,’ said Dr Yolanda Esteban from the School of Architecture and Built Environment.

‘We believe it opened up some valuable discourse about the future of Geelong’s city centre and what it might look like in the future. It also gave audiences of all ages an opportunity to engage with new technologies like augmented reality.’

Professor Tuba Kocaturk, the director of the DesignMind, explained the exhibition theme encapsulates three different forms of engagements with the visitors “each of which was tailored according to the experiences we aim to create through varying representations of alternative, possible, and plausible design futures for the Geelong city.”

The three-part exhibition, VITAL SIGNS included:

Alternative Futures: a virtual real time media installation presented at the Geelong Library & Heritage Centre. Working with The City of Greater Geelong’s comprehensive 3D Digital data model, the installation will present a series of ‘What If?’ scenarios based on the ‘Clever and Creative Future’ vision. The installation will display a series of experimental growth patterns as the city moves beyond 2050, with each day yielding a morphed expression of a 10-year cycle.
Possible Futures: a digital exhibition at the Geelong Gallery. This digital exhibition will be composed of various drawings, sketches and models that came out the ideation and design process, undertaken by students at Deakin School of Architecture, as part of their Urbanheart Surgery studio program. Projects include ideas and concepts relating to the Clever and Creative Corridor planned for the Northern and Western Growth Areas, and future visions relating to Central Geelong and the out of town centres of High Street Belmont and Waurn Ponds. This digital display presented next to Eugene Von Guerard’s original 1856 ‘View of Geelong’, reflecting the dramatic transformation of the surrounding landscape over the past 160 years.

Plausible Futures: an interactive experience presented at the Geelong Library & Heritage Center. With a range of key projects including spatial modelling, mixed reality and responsive environments, such as ‘TreeYah GIS / AR project’ and ‘Place Making Virtual Environments’, developed within the MInD Lab and LIVE+SMART Research Lab at the School of Architecture and Built Environment. The projects exhibited through interactive and immersive media (AR/VR) explored various forms of new interactions and spatial experiences the immersive technologies can potentially create by connecting people, information and physical/digital spaces in unprecedented ways.

Image: Yolanda Esteban: composite image from View of Geelong (1856) by Eugene von Guerard and 5D City Explorer/Virtual Reality (2016) by Anastasia Globa