"Take Control" - Public Display Art Project

The podium outside of MIT's Building 10

The Challenge: Design and fabricate a provocative art piece to be displayed publicly on the MIT campus.

Technical Approach: My partner and I chose the societal construct of "rules" as the topic for this project. A red podium featuring a digital clock, an emergency stop button, and the words "Take Control" urges the public to grasp the reins of their life by performing an impossible feat. Our inability to stop time is a natural law, but we chose to shield it with manmade constructs. The end goal was to question acts which appear impossible solely because of societal laws.

Selected Design Features: Several protective measures have been taken to prevent the stopping of time: a lexan shield physically protects the button while a camera dutifully records who has broken the rules as a way of forcing the transgressor to assume responsibility. Several seconds of scrutiny reveal that the "lexan shield" has already been broken, the button depressed, and time stopped. We chose to pre-break the shield as a suggestion that rules, like glass, become more visible once broken.

Closeup of Control Panel Classmates Interacting with Project
A closeup of the control panel. Classmates interacting with the project.
Front Shot of Project As Viewed when Approached
Viewed from the front. The control panel and camera.