In the Anthropocene, where attention is currency and information experience, today’s hyper-connected users look less towards the built and habitable space for experiences, and more toward their devices. We have unconsciously coupled with our gadgets and devices, growing increasingly distant from the world around us.

As the digital-real world divide deepens, we expect more from our devices, homes, habitats and communities. Can we reimagine our relationship with technology and the built environment? Can we start a new conversation between the city and the dweller? The objectives are manifold, each elicits an interpretation, each evokes a response.

Our aim is to present a proposition that technology made invisible in our spaces can help us create new experiences which engage, enthuse and inspire.  Synesthesia––a connected world where one thing inspires another. A reality where the argument of ‘Technology vs. Architecture’ becomes a synthesis of ‘Technology, with Architecture’.

Synesthesia introduces urban city dwellers to the new perspective of public space with an installation that reimagines rigid materiality and transforms it to engage the user with a soft, malleable fluid dynamism: a feedback loop, a new conversation.

Designed as a sensory intervention, Synesthesia is an interactive and iterative structure computationally generated with acting forces as the design constraint.  Can the city to respond to the user? Can it give feedback to the ebb and flow of crowds? Can it create a more reactive, dynamic public space?

Synesthesia defies the monotony of conventional public spaces, of unresponsive, utility based interactions: by drawing users towards it, engaging them with light and sound, it creates new interactions as the city responds to the user. While the structure is visually stunning, the newness of experience urges the users to engage, to start a conversation with the city, and continue the conversation as the city surreally responds in real-time.

Synesthesia by day is intriguing, a visual anomaly that responds to users with sound and scent. Larger groups will cue unique responses––a pleasing scent to gather the crowd. By night, it transforms, a metamorphosis of light illuminating the night, serving as beacons, alive, ethereal, calling out to be engaged.  Synesthesia encourages users to break barriers of space, touch and interpersonal interaction ––redefining how groups engage with spaces, and how spaces respond to groups. Imagine a user-defined lightshow unique to the moment the user started to engage. A self-generated experience, a result of the interaction of the user and the city.

Using data from proximity and temperature, to sound, and crowd density, Synesthesia reacts in real-time to the changing dynamics of the city.

Every module of Synesthesia is part of a larger whole, creating a visual spectacle on a macro scale, redefining how the city engages, enthuses and excites the user on a micro scale. Through the course of its existence, Synesthesia will self-iterate and expose participants to varying contexts of our built space––a harbinger of a new era of urban; Synesthesia ultimately makes the user, the designer.

Architecture that reacts: synesthesia –– a connected world where one thing inspires another.

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