Satellite Dish Project
The Satellite Dish Project is a Situated Design project. In an assigned location, in this project it was the neighborhood Boschveld, ‘s Hertogenbosch, I had to come up with a clever way to increase multicultural dialog.
I started working on this project by looking for unity in the area. The great number of Satellite dishes present directly stood out to me. I documented as many as I found, and counted over 75 dishes. The dishes are used to receive television signals from far away, and mostly foreighn families have them hanging from their houses.
This information formed the base of the project. For quite some time I searched for other ways to insert situated design in the neighborhood, but eventually I turned back on the first information I had; the huge presence of satellite dishes and what they can communicate.
Dishes are being used for receive television signals from very large distances. Because the dishes are often directed into a certain direction you can see them very well. Plus quite often the dishes exceed 1 meter diameters, they are big! Just a shame tho they are Only being used to receive a satellite signal, nothing more.
I asked several residents for a positive quote about their neighborhood. I translated the quotes into the language of the countries the residents originated from, or where they picked up the satellite signal. Because the area is very multicultural I could choose a big variaty of languages, but Arabic and Turkish were most spoken.
I designed a dish-cover combining the two types of languages, Arabic and Dutch, and added a Arabic background, based on Arabic geometric design.
With the cover placed over the dish the residents could now literally send out a message into their street and neighborhood. So in stead of only receiving a signal from very far away and using it on your television indoors, where there is No connection at alle with your surrounding, now dish-using locals can send out a message with their dishes! A very easy and effective way to make communication easier, using tools that are already present in the desired places.
All images by Thomas Dekker.