Second Annual Activate the Park exhibition in Toronto

First-year Interaction Design students at the Ontario College of Art & Design have been charged with the task of “Activating the Park” by creating projects that will engage students and the general public who pass by. Nestled underneath architect Will Alsop’s now-famous “tabletop” building is Butterfield Park, a new and beautiful urban park, but one people don’t linger in — it’s a space to pass through, not stop and reflect on the space or interact with others.

Each of the 15 classes has created a different dynamic environment. All are on view from 3:00-6:00pm on Wednesday, April 4. Projects include:

The Tent: Explore the interactive possibilities of layering environments within environmentscome take shelter.
Das Ballon: Step inside this interactive inflatable structure
Mega Maze: Two People. One Maze. Mega Confusion.
PssstShhhh: Pssst, what’s your secret? Shhh, don’t tellor do. Come into a dark corner, trust your secrets to paper, and see what happens.
See It, Say It, Spray It: It’s literature warfare. Pick from floating words, bicker over the ones cruelly taken from you. When you’re done with your message, spray it on a T-shirt for the world to see!
Human Foosball: Come and (try to) kick it aroundfor charity.
DACO at OCAD – Giant Everything! Down giant tip-overs, articulate giant Jenga towers, compete in building giant forts, oppose in giant Tic-Tac-Toe.
Paradise Lost: An interactive performance with tropical butterflies, ecological threats, tireless environmentalists and Al Gore.
The Secret Exchange: Wouldn’t you like to know somebody’s deepest secret? Here’s your chance, but you must offer one in return.
Ontario Cave of Art and Design: Primitive cave painting under the modern floating box.
Dirty Little Secret: Air your secrets in public like dirty laundry.

The entire park is the canvas, and passersby are the subjects. With the recent interest Toronto’s public spaces, these student projects represent what happens when young people look at our city’s communal spaces and say “How can we engage people there?

Interaction design is a sub-discipline of design which examines the role of embedded behaviors and intelligence in physical and virtual spaces as well as the convergence of physical and digital products. Sometimes referred to by the acronyms “IxD” or “iD,” interaction design has recently developed as a field of study in a growing number of universities throughout the world. Interactive Design is concerned with a user, customer, audience, or participant’s experience with a designed object.