Forbidden tourism: The Invisible Generation

30th January to 3rd February 2012- Goldsmith University-London

Excerpt from brief:

  • At 8:15 am on 26 September 1991, eight “bionauts,” as they called themselves, wearing identical red Star Trek–like jumpsuits (made for them by Marilyn Monroe’s former dressmaker) waved to the assembled crowd and climbed through an airlock door in the Arizona desert. They shut it behind them and opened another that led into a series of hermetically sealed greenhouses in which they would live for the next two years. The three-acre complex of interconnected glass Mesoamerican pyramids, geodesic domes, and vaulted structures contained a tropical rain forest, a grassland savannah, a mangrove wetland, a farm, and a salt-water ocean with a wave machine and gravelly beach. This was Biosphere 2—the first biosphere being Earth—a $150 million experiment designed to see if, in a climate of nuclear and ecological fear, the colonization of space might be possible. The project was described in the press as a “planet in a bottle.”

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  • “Any Number can play

Yes any number can play anyone with a tape recorder controlling the sound track can influence and create events  the tape recorder experiments described here will show you how this influence can be extended and correlated into the precise operation  this is the Invisible Generation he looks like an advertising executive a college student an American tourist doesn’t matter what you cover the story is so long as it covers you and leaves you free to act.”

William Burroughs- The Invisible generation

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In William Burroughs’ text The Invisible Generation he describes hidden operators, agents of change and design that sit behind the scenes formulating and curating new events, experiences and interactions. Acting as the “Invisible Generation”, you are tasked to create ‘domesticated events’ in which tourists will be invited to experience new forms of landscape / sports activity / warmth / environment / diet / language / beach / sound / inhabitants etc…

You are required to test out and assess the extreme in order to propose forbidden touristic activities. You will be asked to reassess notions of risk, spectacle and attraction in order to speculate on future wonders to come.

This project demands that you question how to engage the curiosity of your audience. As the Invisible Generation you will aim to manipulate and control your customers emotions and perceptions as you guide them through fresh seas on tiles and concrete gardens.