September 15, 2011

"Total Tourism - The Alpine Village" and "Satellites"

Gwangju Design Biennale 2011; September 2 – October 23, 2011

Total Tourism - The Alpine ‘Gesamtkunstwerk’

Tourism is the world’s largest and fastest-growing economic sector, with more than 800 million people traveling every year, and the world’s largest employer, responsible for 230 million jobs (8% of the global workforce).
The world’s fast growing middle class promises a tourist boom in the nearby future. It is estimated that the global middle class will double in the upcoming twenty years with China and India providing two-thirds of this expansion. Growth in middle class citizens inevitably leads to growth in tourists: experts predict that by 2020, the global 'tourforce' will reach 1.6 billion.

Tourism is a true people-to-people business. Guests express their desire directly to the host, who fulfills it instantly. The tourist’s desire does not stop at the breakfast table but expands to the room, the house and the entire landscape, since enjoying scenery is the foremost reason for visiting a place. In order to satisfy their visitors' wishes and distinguish themselves in an increasingly fierce global competition, the citizens, leaders, and planners of tourist destinations are increasingly shaping their communities to satisfy the expectations of outsiders. In the most extreme cases, this produces environments that are entirely designed around the tourist expectations - homes 'designed' by guests.

a quote by Artinfo
Perhaps best encapsulating the spirit of "Design is design is not design," the "Unnamed" portion, for which Ai tapped design writer Brendan McGetrick as curator, expands the definition of design by eschewing traditional categories and focusing instead on economics, politics, science, and healthcare, dividing the show conceptually like sections of a newspaper. Rotterdam architect Theo Deutinger's "Alpine Village Image Design" explores the way a tourist designs the hospitality industry and even acts as landscaper based on his expectations for his own vacation. Other exhibitions presented the science of smells, prosthetic limbs, and genetically modified rice.

Alpine Village - concept development: Kayoko Ota, Brendan McGetrick & Theo Deutinger

production: Theo Deutinger, Ana Rita Marques, Kit Chow, Philipp Goedhard with the help of Christoph Mooslechner, Monique Leenders and Gerry Reiter