Out of all that work, a troika of publications have emerged—at once playful and practical, documentary and polemical—to reflect those explorations and share them with a wider community. With the intention of “open-sourcing” the elements and processes that came out of the workshop, these publications complement the material available on the Beautiful Data website, offering routes for exploration of this material that are meant to be applicable in diverse contexts. We hope that you will activate whatever elements seem useful to you, fostering the continuing evolution of Beautiful Data.
The field guide documents the concepts and flows of information that came out of the Beautiful Data workshop, linking critical discussion with invitations to experimentation and making. Using a range of modes, including case studies, maps, activities, and prototypes (and linking to online documentation of these elements), the guide aims to serve as a resource, providing various entry points into the dialogue surrounding Beautiful Data and promoting further experimentation around this material.
The prototyping game provides a set of raw materials for remixing and rethinking the ways in which we design experiences with objects. This playful framework, drawn from institutional missions and contexts, offers springboards for discussion, ideation, and project development.
The provocation cards, drawn from the work of participants in Beautiful Data’s weekend workshop component, provide prompts for adventures in museums, lightly provoking users to engage with these spaces in new and generative ways.
While these documents are the product of the entire Beautiful-Data community, they’re richly the result of considerable invention and energy on the part of two of our summer interns: Laura Mitchell, who provided editorial direction; and Ebru Boyaci, who furnished creative direction. Of course that very dichotomy—the editorial and the graphic—is an instance of the sort of thinking we wanted to break down and remix in the Beautiful Data workshop—and Ebru & Laura’s work constitutes a wonderful example of the kind of collaborative performance of thinking, dreaming, and doing that all of us present at the workshop saw glimmering in our exercises and iterations. So let’s extend that dialogue: take these documents, apply them in new contexts, and tell us what you make!