Saturday, April 01, 2006

Day to Day Data - two weeks later

The badges in the five tubes in the public library were all gone within two weeks: that's approximately 7,500 badges distributed unevenly and anonymously on coats, jackets, bags, and the pavements of Kennington, south London. The library staff said that lots of children had taken them and seemed apologetic about this: in their view, they weren't taking the project seriously. But a man in the library, overhearing this conversation, mentioned that all the children at his kids' school were wearing the badges and that they had raised discussion there.

On the wall opposite the now empty tubes I saw some filled in 'public forecast' cards I designed, asking people to predict the levels of badges in the tubes on a particular date, with comments. The two shown here suggest a disappointment about people's engagement with the social. "Pink is honest, grey is what we want people think," writes one person. The pink badges say "I did nothing" while the grey ones say "I helped someone". The other card says "People are to (sic) afraid to stand up for Right."

I don't yet have pictures of the levels of the tubes changing day by day as people took the badges. The curator Ellie Harrison has arranged for another set of badges to be installed, and asked for a daily photo documenting the changing levels.

Reviews: The exhibition is featured in the April 2006 issue of Art Monthly and is also mentioned on the Information Aesthetics website.

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