Possessed by Possessions
A systemic study to map the dynamics of Contemporary Consumption
In today's fast-paced society, it's easy to lose sight of our true needs and unintentionally engage in wasteful behaviors, caught up in the constant cycle of new products, updates, and trends. This "use and throw" culture perpetuates consumerism and its associated problems. As a team, we conducted an exploration of consumer behavior and product usage, seeking areas where we can make positive changes to promote more sustainable and mindful habits.
This project began as an inquiry into the role of industrial design in the 21st century, questioning whether it can evolve to meet the needs of the present and improve the future. We also considered the potential future role of industrial designers and whether new professions may be needed to address these challenges. By understanding how consumerism affects our daily lives, we hope to shape a more thoughtful and sustainable future.
Ideation & Prototyping
Documentation & Sharing
We have clutter all around us but we hardly notice it anymore. During our research phase we made people click photos of their own clutter to make them aware of the products that they were overlooking.
An experimental setup which made people buy things for their ideal home brought people face to face with the reality of their shopping habits. Arranging their shopping list into needs, wants and desires made the shoppers realize that they consume much more than what they could do with.
These experiments and the secondary research helped us map out the current system and to find connections and problems in it.
The collected data was then visualized along with possible solutions.
Visualizations in the form of a Gigamap help in communicating the system very easily and effectively to any audience. It also plays an important role in striking up a conversation about the existing problems and in inspiring change.
Click on the map to zoom in
One of the solutions visualized in the Gigamap was implemented to see the response and the effect of this idea.
We set up a pop up shop with several activities which could create awareness, encourage the act of sharing and lead to skill building for visitors to tackle the problem of consumerism.
IDEATION & PROTOTYPING
Stations where visitors could learn the art of reusing and upcycling were set up.
Games which people could play and learn about the problems at the same time were designed
Thought provoking exhibitions were set up.
DOCUMENTATION & SHARING
The entire process of this project, the research and the outcomes were documented in the form of a booklet.