“Remote Home, One Home Two Cities” is an interactive live installation that took place simultaneously at the Science Museum (London) and the Raumlabor Gallery (Berlin) in May 2003, as part of a collaborative project between myself and the Smart Studio at the Interactive Institute in Sweden. This project was commissioned by Tricia Austin, co-curator of the “user-mode, Emotion and Intuition in Design” symposium organised across Tate Modern and the Science Museum.
My research focuses on redefining the domestic space by challenging our use and perception of textiles. ‘Poetic textiles for smart homes' is the umbrella project under which I have produced a series of design outputs and research papers that propose innovative textile and product designs for the home.
In this context, “Remote Home” aimed at enabling intelligent technologies to tease and nurture human emotions through a material and design–led approach. For the first time in the history of interactive design, the project investigated the notion of flat-sharing at a distance across two cities and two countries and challenged preconceived boundaries and conventional definitions of “home”.
In an increasingly global context where long distance relationships have become more common, this project explored the interaction between my architecture and emotions at a remote distance. The final live installation staged two conceptual flats embedded with intelligent technologies so as to respond to the presence and movement of their inhabitants across London and Berlin. The furniture and wall-coverings in the London “flat” physically transformed themselves in a symbiotic fashion to signify that someone was “home” in Berlin, and vice versa. This included furnishings changing shape and colour in reaction to people sitting or walking in either apartment.