Utilizing the medium of interactive installations, we hope that we can create an exhibition that can act as a catalyst for discussion regarding failure.
Failure is an inevitable part of growing and being human, something is absolutely necessary and something to learn from. In our current day and age, people are extremely good at social media, curating what parts of their lives they show and keep private. In other words, we’re really good at making it look like we don’t fail. In addition to the fact that the prevalent practice in parenting currently, is to make your child feel special. That they’re unique, that they can do anything they set their minds to as long as they try hard enough. Leads to many growing up, failing at different endeavors and not being able to deal with it. We’re lead to grow up feeling as if any sort of failure is unacceptable. We hope that through this interactive exhibition, we can begin the discussion to normalize failure. To help people understand the inevitability and necessity of failure in order to grow.
One day you’re walking around in the power station of art with some friends and you’re walking around looking at interesting installations and pieces of art. Suddenly something bright catches your eye, there seems to be a large tent looking installation in back of the museum, it’s filled with all sorts of different lights, bright vibrant colors and loud noises. As you slowly begin to walk towards the tent you start hear a loud voice seemly coming from inside the tent, the voice seems to be talking about playing games and winning prizes. The closer you get the louder the voice is, and you begin to hear old timey carnival music and laughter. You put two and two together and realize that this is a carnival of sorts. It seems extremely lively and popular so you decide to go check it out. You brush open the curtain and walk in…only to find that it’s fairly empty. Lots of animatronics and speakers and sounds but very few actual people making the sounds. It’s eerie inside, somehow simultaneously vivacious yet lifeless, directly inside the entrance you find a stand with a button that says “PUSH ME!”, so you do. Nothing happens at first, then a small black box next to the button you barely noticed begins to make a buzzing noise and slowly, a piece of paper comes out with a QR code and a little message that says head to the front desk and pick up a lanyard! Looking around you quickly spot the intro desk to your left and grab a lanyard and place your slip of paper inside the clear lanyard. On the intro desk is an array of different posters for the carnival and a screen that has a web cam in front of it. There is a little sign that says “Scan your QR code here!”, You scan your code and almost jump back as the screen suddenly comes alive, there’s an ecstatic looking man on the screen greets you. “Hello! Thank you for coming to the Carnival! For the rest of your visit you’ll be identified based on the random ID assigned to your QR code, your ID number is 1852375, when you get a chance walk around to check out the different games that we’ve got. Everyone starts out with 10 game tokens that are tracked by your QR code, each game will cost you one token, but will give you a chance at winning a prize token. Go check out the rewards booth to see our awesome prizes that you can exchange your success tokens for! If you run out of game tokens you can head to the projector in the middle of the room in order for an opportunity to earn some more. ;)”
You glance over at the rewards booth and to your amazement there are several MacBook pros and iPads in there, each with a measly 5 prize token cost. You immediately run to the first game you see and scan your QR code at the webcam found in front, like the intro booth, the screen jumps to life and begins explaining the rules as well as notifying you how many game tokens you have left. You notice a small list of ID numbers of people who have failed to win on the screen but quickly dismiss it and prepare to play.
45 minutes later, you’ve played through every game, went to the projector and received extra tokens three times already and still haven’t even managed to win a single prize token. Clearly disappointed you finally take a moment to just soak your environment in, as you begin to just observe the machines and the games you see the residuals of the failures of those before you. 100’s of missed ping pong balls, paper airplanes slew across the floor, pages and pages of ID’s in the list of failures. Though your attempts at winning the prizes haven’t been fruitful, you feel oddly at peace. You leave the exhibit a bit confused, but definitely intrigued and excited to share the experience with your friends.