The Future Starts Here: The Design Object of Tomorrow

The V&A’s exhibition presents the latest projects, designs and events that are shaping our society right now. For the UAL’s project ‘(Dis)connected Lives’, I have curated a selection of objects which, I believe, are the feasible trends of our near future, focusing mainly on the parliament of a stateless community. 

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The 100 objects cover the latest developments in four major areas – home, public, planetary and afterlife (CLOT Magazine, 2018). For me, as a total anti-scientist with no interest in living forever or entering the universe, I was more excited about the projects that actually bring people together, such as a people’s parliament or a Pussy Power Hat. Besides, there are projects acknowledging loneliness (often caused by the development of social media), such as the Dutch restaurant for one (Eenmaal), contrasted with the ultra-sharing space created by The Collective.

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All in all, the one project that I believed in the most in the exhibition was the ‘New World Summit – Rojava’ which connects people of different ethnicities who come together to create a new model of stateless democracy. Jonas Staal has created the ‘people’s parliament’ for those who declared the autonomy of Rojava (northern Syria) and decided to launch a unique political model which emphasised gender equality, communal economy and secularism. 

The Summit officially opened in April 2018 and despite the multiple attacks, the social model still persists. The structure carries messages (in three different languages) that are the foundation of the philosophy of the Rojava Revolution. With a 50-50 female-male representation (Dezeen), the Summit not only represents the cultural melting pot visually but also physically. 

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The people’s parliament brings together a variety of disciplines and values, from politics to construction, from security to empowerment, from architecture to human-centred design. The simplistic solution combines strong and lasting materials with thoughtful messages inspiring the community that gathers under one structure. The target audience is everybody who believes in the independence of the region and simultaneously doubts the function of the politicians. Interesting concept, which could also be discussed in the European context.

“The ‘New World Summit – Rojava’ connects people of different ethnicities who come together to create a new model of stateless democracy.”

After the 700,000-strong march for Brexit vote took place in London last weekend (The Guardian), one begins to wonder what is the role of governments in real life. If Assyrians and Arabs can create their own rules, why cannot we? Deciding on leaving the EU went terribly wrong but maybe, with a gentle nudge and a cause worth fighting for, people might create much more sustainable solutions that the parties tend to do. 

The ‘New World Summit – Rojava’ is an excellent example of a not-so-violent revolution, reminding me when my own country was fighting for its independence. Back then, a handful of individuals stood up to represent the interests of a large community of people. It is clear that this project is a feasible solution which can and should be implemented by multiple communities around the world experiencing political difficulties. Long live the stateless nation! 

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Bibliography
Helm, T., Savage, M. (2018) Almost 700,000 march to demand ‘people’s vote’ on Brexit deal [online], available at: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/oct/20/70000-demand-new-brexit-vote 
Aouf, R. S. (2018) 10 designs that predict the future, selected by curators of the V&A’s The Future Starts Here [online], available at: https://www.dezeen.com/2018/05/04/va-museum-the-future-starts-exhibition-highlights/ 
Staal, J. (2015-2018) New World Summit – Rojava, Studio Jonas Staal. Available at: http://www.jonasstaal.nl/projects/new-world-summit-rojava/ 
Victoria & Albert Museum (2018) Project focus | Jonas Staal: New World Summit – Rojava [online], available at: https://www.vam.ac.uk/articles/project-focus-jonas-staal-new-world-summit-rojava
Eenmal (2018) PROJECT EENMAAL BY MVGCA AS FROM MAY 12 – NOV 4, 2018 IN V&A MUSEUM, LONDON [online], available at: http://eenmaal.com 
CLOT Magazine (2018) MARIANA PESTANA & RORY HYDE, ‘The Future Starts Here’ [online], available at: http://www.clotmag.com/mariana-pestana-rory-hyde 
All accessed 21/10/2018 

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