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Please text me, my number is 646-238-8288

Plaster Interactive Sculpture

“Please text me, my number is 646-238-8288” is an interactive sculpture project I made in my sophomore year of college.

 

“I enjoy the connection technology brings to us both for entertainment and work, but I also keep asking myself how I could make this experience better in the future. I reflected a lot about how humans socialize with each other, and technology, during our daily lives.”

 

I once managed a social experiment for my sculpture class. The sculpture was called “My number is 646-xxx-xxxx, please text me”. I put my phone into a plaster stand and surrounded it with a transparent acrylic box. Then, I pulled out a marker and wrote the title on the acrylic box with my phone number when the show started. During the first half of the experiment, audiences mainly interacted with the piece by texting the number. But in the second half of the experiment, the phone fell down as planned —— the buzzing of the coming message broke the thin plaster stand. After that, people start to put their phone down, approach the piece and leave a message with the marker on the acrylic box. By the end of the experience, I compared the messages I received on my phone with those written on the box. People, in general, were more open when they left a message on the box. There were drawings, logos, and lines in different writing styles, even different languages.

 

I wanted to discuss how social media has changed our way of interacting with other people. I highly appreciate the convenience, privacy, and asynchronous communication granted by technology, but once technology is out of the picture, humans are still more used to interaction in the physical world. And I wonder whether I will be able to create an interface in the future that allows people to socialize more freely with technology. For me, I believe that the challenge is not only with the technology, but also how we design the interface to create that environment that implies openness and real human interaction.

Some messages I got  on show day

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