In Search of Happily Ever After

At a time of scientific and digital uncertainty can cartoon physics help us feel at home in our material world?

Although we no longer look to fairy tales for guidance of our own lives, we still share the protagonist’s key desire for a better life and hopeful future – one that scientific discovery, digital technologies, and architecture all promise to deliver through exploiting a landscape of invisible phenomena. Although we cannot perceive this landscape directly, it determines everything we see and do. Every object there is follows its contours, from a train along a track or a plane through the sky, to an ice-cream dripping on the floor, this is the topography of space-time: the underlying fabric of the physical universe, and perhaps of reality itself.

Recent discovery confirming the existence of gravity waves places us at the beginning of a new era in modern science and revives a now hyper-commodified dream of space travel. Coupled with an increasing demand to expand runway space at London’s airports continues to encourage us to place our hopes for the future elsewhere; beyond our grasp. In such an immaterial world where it is becoming increasingly difficult to know how to express our innermost thoughts and feelings, where anything is possible but largely unattainable, how do we reconnect with our material world? We needn’t look any further than at the ground beneath our feet, refocusing attention toward gravity’s banal interface between man and Earth – the joyous and uplifting medium of airport carpets.

Video produced as part of ADS8 within the MA Architecture Department at the Royal College of Art 2014 :

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