This is the translation of an article originally written in french by Yasmine Tashk and was featured in the paper version of KSAT
Diego was dreaming about becoming an inventor when he would be an adult. He found the way to get closer to this world by starting speculative design. After attending a Photography School and beginning his studies in Biology he soon figured out that he needed more creativity in his life. He will never leave photography anyway and eventually use it as a principal medium for his projects.
In his work DNA shelves we can see the link between those 3 disciplines. It shows the fascination for the biology imaginary, the utility of the object design and the photographic rendering.
Evolving from this scientific context he got interested in IT, then to future and science fiction. He finds inspiration in books but also from magazines of scientific research or every other stimulating element dealing with this environment.
Some of his projects strongly catch my attention and I ask him to tell me more about them. We start talking about his older project published on his web site: Memory Maps.
After finishing his school of photography he was passing a strange mood period. He travelled a lot and all these experiences represented a strong inspiration for his work. He had the feeling that those places, so significant for him, would all disappear in the future. The architecture changes trough time and the landscape evolves. He starts bringing maps with him and comparing them to the places they referred to, imagining what those landscapes looked like before some symbolic event happened.
It was a way for him to compare 2 different historic moments on the timeline of those particular spaces. His desire was to create a comparison between landscape and memory that could either be a collective memory.
In another of his projects, Soundsurbation, Diego got interested in the possible evolution of society through sexual relationship.
After spending some time observing the proliferation of CCTV cameras as well as the spreading of social networks. He was focusing on vision of private life in the future. Some boundaries have been crossed and today we feel pretty confortable to share
parts of our life with others. It’s a sort of nudity. In this way, in the future, in aim to practice our curiosity we should go beyond the concept of nudity.
Diego imagines that we should listen to the heart beat of our partner or the sound coming from his stomach that represent the “butterflies in the stomach” we have when we fall in love with someone. This would represent the beginning of a research on this subject.
This conversation articulates on his experience at Testa/Weiser, and architecture and design studio based in Los Angeles. They recently opened an informatics research laboratory in aim to explore the meeting between architecture and robotics. They explore how robots interpret space and start building structures with the help of those robots.
There, he worked on the specific issue of how at last the industry and its products are not so much far from some part of human culture. He operated on a synchronized study aiming to analyze how robots could communicate between each other.
James Auger was his tutor at the Royal College of Arts in London, specifically on his project about domestic robots. He tell me about the significance bias of photography in the creation of a certain type of atmosphere in his projects.
Once we enter the house of a grandmother for example, we are suddenly immerged in the feeling and emotions this particular place communicates. His desire is to reveal the same sensations through his photos. He wished to
recreate a sort of robotic atmosphere purified and sterilized.
Diego develops a kind of pessimistic of the future through time. He tell me his vision changed as he recognized that the most important thing for people was finding what make profits, rather then what was convenient or confortable.
He prefigures a future where money and economy will be the leading guide of our life and would steer all others fields’ progress.
When I ask him what would be in his opinion the areas of major development in the next future, his answer is that informatics is won’t soon stop to present everyday innovative surprises but that new subsectors are emerging and starting to develop in the meanwhile, like biotechnology. He thinks that we’ll soon have to deal with the appearance of new materials. For Diego, the future is a projection of the present.
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