The one-week workshop with the class of students from the Designing User Research minor informed a design brief for a two months project, that was taken up by a group of three students from the same course: Beate van Garderen, Jos de Boer and Aidan Omwando. They were asked to further explore the climate future imaginaries from the initial list provided by us, with an additional question: How can we engage others with different imaginaries of the future with climate change?
They worked in expanding the existing visual datasets by looking at Pinterest as a fertile platform for imagination (Fig. 1), compiling a report of how the different imaginaries relate to the topic of climate change, which kind of future they depict, and through which symbolic practices their aesthetics become enacted.
To come back to the main goal of engaging the public with new kinds of climate-related future imaginaries, the students designed a workshop in which people were invited to use the images collected in the first part of the research as raw material to think about what the future would look like in their personal perspectives.
The workshop was introduced by an overview of the research done and a tutorial of how to make a digital collage in Photoshop (Fig. 2). Participants were asked to use the collected images as a starting point to create a collage representing their “ideal” vision of the future. Each work was then presented and used to prompt a group conversation.
In the second part of the workshop everyone was asked to make a collage of a future world which they deemed to be more realistic than their “ïdeal” vision. All collages made during this assignment were discussed as well.
All the collages and the recordings of the discussions were showcased in an interactive exhibition designed for the audiovisual exploration of climate imaginaries. People were invited to follow an immersive audio tour to explore the works, listen to the discussion generated around them and lastly select the future imaginary that resonated the most with them.