The Multilocalist tells the story of a contemporary nomad finding their sense of home in flux. It displays different cities and places through immersive sound portals that emulate the emotional climate of each location. “Multilocalism” refers to the fact that in today’s global world, many people have no single place that they call home.
Each tent embodies a different personality on the inside, emulating the emotional climate of each experience. This is in stark contrast to the homogeneous exterior of the tents. The different colored bulbs create an apt environment that emulates the emotional climate of that experience.
The tents work as sonic sculptures that house the soundscapes playing through a headphone. The soundscapes provide the ultimate level of immersion and interaction with the audience. They play a crucial role and bring the whole experience home. Each soundscape consists of snapshots of the experiences I have had, and what constitutes my sense of home.
The form of the tent is inspired by the Bedouin tents used by nomadic tribes all around the world.
Portability was an essential aspect of designing the form of the tent. I experimented with different shapes of the frame like a circle, a square, and a polygon. I found out that a hexagonal structure is most portable, and fits in the knapsack most efficiently.
I designed a knapsack to carry this tent with me wherever I go. This knapsack is a sign that signifies the mobile nature of my sense of home. When worn on my back, it communicates to others that I'm a contemporary nomad.
The labels signify the different experiences that communicate to the audience that there is variety and that they can make a choice.
The pleats on the outer surface of the tent add a pleasant visual pattern. The hand-embroidered labels on the tents add a subtle layer of information while maintaining its tactile nature.
The background wall is painted in a desert clay color and then textured with layers of different colored speckles to add depth and gradient. The neutral color of the tents pop out against a dark background, maintaining the focus on the tents.
The quipus placed inside the tents act as an object of intrigue. When one enters someone’s home for the first time, one looks around out of curiosity to build up a mental collage of the other person’s personality. The quipus allow another level of interaction and feed the interest of the audience. They emulate the emotional climate and portray the specific experience in an abstract form.
Sound is an essential part of my sense of home and emotional climate. It has the power to connect with the listener straightforwardly and purely, triggering strong emotions while being ephemeral.
For this project, I record sounds from all my homes to create their soundscapes and use them in immersive environments that evoke a strong emotional response in the audience. Recording the sounds around me has become a daily ritual.
The Multilocalist was selected to be exhibited at LAUNCH 2019 held at ICA Gallery in Baltimore, MD, a showcase of curated works from graduating students of MICA’s MFA programs.
One night while closing the gallery at night, something magical happened!
The tents illuminated in the dark embodying a very different aesthetic than the original. It was an opportunity to take some interesting photos!
All this painstaking attention to detail was a labor of love and shows a passion towards a better understanding of how humans experience home in the current global world. By using these unconventional techniques and materials as graphic design, a new approach is used to think about what home means. It helps people with a scattered sense of home to feel comfortable in that state and equips them with a new tool to continue their own exploration of home.