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Cycles of Maintenance is a performance piece which discusses the nuances of our semi-private spaces - with a focus on the lawn and its complexities, influences, and consequences in social, cultural and environmental spaces.

By performing a sequence of highly constructed actions in a perpetual cycle of lawn maintenance, we explore how people attach meaning to spaces and behaviour, in an attempt to achieve uniformity with their neighbours, or meaningless display of status.

Our goal was to illuminate the absurdity of how people perform in semi-private spaces, specifically on lawns. We highlight how people do work to maintain an image of ownership and status that is ultimately futile.

The project was exhibited with 7 monitors on floor level in a half-circle sequence, with a sod displayed in the centre. The viewers were expected to interact with the space while the sound of metronomes in the background projected the concept of time.

This project was executed - from initial ideation and research to final installation piece - in a spam of 5 days for a 5-day intensive critical design class at Emily Carr University of Art and Design.

The project proposed students to design a ritual that critically engages with a matter of concern within our neglected public-commons. It had to provoke questions about the ways in which we care, or do not care, about our shared spaces, while forcing us to consider alternatives to our current ways of being-in-the-world with others. 

Cycles of Maintanenve was designed by myself, Vivia Dehua Liu, Karla Erasmus, Jihyo Kwon and Autumn Stewart.
Project date: February 2022

For: Design as a Critical Medium | Making Public(s) class - Emily Carr University of Art + Design
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