The Museum of the Future in Dubai is the materialization of the collective imagination of what the future can be. More than 30,000 m2 of pure innovation that wants to invite users to daydream. Domestic Streamers is part of this great project that has just been inaugurated, with installations for the exhibition Tomorrow Today, commissioned by Gonzalo Herrero. What are the challenges that will come in the years to come? This is the question that must be answered and the starting point for these two installations focused on renewable energies and Smart Devices.
Human beings have the ability to imagine and dream and this is what has allowed us to move forward and innovate to the point we thought was impossible. But innovation and especially technological advances come with a series of doubts (I guess we all have 2001: A Space Odyssey in mind…) and some of them have been dealt with in the Tomorrow Today exhibition located inside the Museum of the Future which recently opened in Dubai. The building is already a statement of intent, its circular shape represents humanity, the green mound on which it stands represents humanity and the void in the middle symbolizes the unknown future. It is a work of architecture and engineering in stainless steel; Its construction required 1,024 rooms which covered a total area of 17,600 m2. A construction where advanced technology has been applied to traditional art forms.
The museum is 77 meters high and occupies a total area of 30,548 m2, a space that was designed to provide knowledge and answers (although some are speculative) about the future. Gonzalo Herrero, is the curator of the museum in charge of investigating what is relevant to present in this exhibition. As he tells us, the museum is designed with a linear route that visitors begin in the year 2071 to gradually reach the present. The museum’s goal is to connect and educate visitors about how the technology and actions we develop today can generate a positive future for society and the planet. Tomorrow today is the exhibition that closes the visit to the museum and tries to present what the future will be like in the next decade. It is based on a quote from influential architect Cedric Price in 1966: “Technology is the answer, but what was the question?”. Now, more than 50 years later, this question is more relevant than ever.
Gonzalo had input from the Domestic Streamers team, which aimed to create installations with an interactive layer to be appealing to the general public and with an upbeat tone. María Fabuel, project manager and member of Domestic Streamers, tells us that His work has involved designing the architectural elements of the facilities focused on renewable energy and smart devices.as well as in the choice of exhibitions and their staging and also participated in the development of content and the creation of animated videos.
In the section devoted to renewable energies, a giant meter tracks global energy consumption in real time; there is also an interactive circular screen that explains curious facts about the main renewable energy sources of the moment such as wind, solar or biomass. Through this screen, users can learn real data through comparisons and familiar language to understand everything in a simple and dynamic way. In addition, as we have said, one of the objectives is to invite visitors to be critical, to anticipate the possible problems that these new technologies can bring us.
The approach of the museum of the future is to give a positive view of the use of technology, although María admits that it is sometimes complicated, especially when you start to investigate more in depth. In the installation focused on smart deviceshave made a selection of some of the most advanced technologies that we incorporate into our homes and into our daily lives, to offer a showcase including several areas such as: education, with a robot that teaches; food, with a plate that tracks and analyzes what you eat; Smart lockers, which protect your home when you’re away, or the already popular rumba, which helps with housework. As you can see, these are tools that a priori make life easier and better, but is there anything else? All of this data is shared in the cloud and surely (like the vast majority) you don’t read the privacy policies or terms of a new device when you buy it. This data, your data, is susceptible to being hacked or shared/sold to third parties.; María comments that for this reason they have installed a large screen (full-length) in the exhibition that when someone stands in front of it analyzes them and tells them everything these objects can know.
The ‘Tomorrow Today’ exhibition was one of the museum’s openings, but it will be temporary like many others, which is what makes it so interesting according to María, who comments that “all the content there will need to be updated very frequently”, after all, this is the museum of the future and what seems inaccessible today will be our reality tomorrow. And as I told you at the beginning, the museum presents many projects, and as Gonzalo tells us, the vast majority have climate change as a common thread, presenting solutions that reduce or mitigate the environmental impact.
This narrative is found in one way or another in all the exhibits of the museum. even in the area dedicated to children or as they call them “future heroes”. In this space, the little ones will be able to explore and play, while developing their skills, in three areas divided by experience: imagine, design and build. According to museum sources, the goal is for children to find “opportunities to play and learn through activities that encourage communication, collaboration and creativity.”