Abstract

This article presents an empirical reflection about the design of prototypes and the individualization of some animals at the National Zoo in Santiago, Chile. Using the material produced by design students, we describe how the process of prototyping contributes to singularize those animals, therefore becoming a cosmopolitical device. The environmental enrichment for chimpanzees case will demonstrate how prototyping displays a truly ontological vocation, establishing open processes of dialogue and experimentation. Its provisional, malleable and fragile nature turns the prototype into a locus for inquiry and exploration; its cosmopolitical qualities derived from its many forms of ontological diplomacy: instead of stabilizing properties, it constantly re-specifies its conditions for verification. Finally, we attempt to develop the thesis of the prototype as a cosmopolitical device and its implications on design research as well as a way to intervene the world.

Keywords:

protopype, cosmopolitics, design, zoo, ontologic diplomacy

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

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Jun 17th, 12:00 AM

The Prototype as a Cosmopolitical Place: Ethnographic design practice and research at the National Zoo in Santiago, Chile

This article presents an empirical reflection about the design of prototypes and the individualization of some animals at the National Zoo in Santiago, Chile. Using the material produced by design students, we describe how the process of prototyping contributes to singularize those animals, therefore becoming a cosmopolitical device. The environmental enrichment for chimpanzees case will demonstrate how prototyping displays a truly ontological vocation, establishing open processes of dialogue and experimentation. Its provisional, malleable and fragile nature turns the prototype into a locus for inquiry and exploration; its cosmopolitical qualities derived from its many forms of ontological diplomacy: instead of stabilizing properties, it constantly re-specifies its conditions for verification. Finally, we attempt to develop the thesis of the prototype as a cosmopolitical device and its implications on design research as well as a way to intervene the world.

 

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