Lucky #8!* In this eighth update for our project in replicating Gordon Pask’s Colloquy of Mobiles, we are celebrating the recent public presentation by our master fabricator — and we are now seeking new venues to bring the wonders of Colloquy to new audiences.
In a great gathering here at the Interaction Design masters program at College for Creative Studies, the audience was briefed by TJ McLeish, master fabricator, in his thinking and processes in designing and constructing our replica of Colloquy, the only one made since the original was installed in London in 1968. (Here is a longer video of TJ’s talk.)
Design Core Detroit generously sponsored this session as part of their Month of Design, a city-wide celebration across Detroit for all of September. The audience was given flashlights… and invited to discover the layers of conversation among the mobiles and between the mobiles and the audience. Pask embodied a sophisticated model of interaction, surprising and entertaining, into Colloquy, which was a way-point in his development of a full-blown theory of conversations.
It is now time to reinvigorate prior offers and create new conversations with organizations who want to house Colloquy for a period of time or even permanently. Two cohorts of students have experienced Colloquy at the MFA Interaction Design program and have produced a website about their experiences (though more effort will be required to document the project as a whole). Other communities at CCS and in the region have visited. Now we want to spread the experience of Colloquy to museums, schools, and all organizations with a sensibility toward interactive media and interaction design. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have interest or know of anyone who might. Thank you. – Paul Pangaro
* Gordon Pask famously thought 8 was a lucky number, so much so that he sometimes exaggerated a claim — see for example his writeup of Musicolour in which he claims there are 8 filters in use, each part of a channel that produced an individual, responsive light. He told me privately that the apparatus really only had 5 — but he wrote 8 because it was lucky.