History Machines: The Deviant Practice of Inhabiting Information
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The tentative term “history machine” is a medium of immersive scholarship lingering between reality and fiction, with which I examine, redesign, and reimagine archives. I see archives, not as static objects that contain historical documents, but as immersive spaces and living collections where existential ideas about world orders migrate though different architectural and spatial typologies. Contrary to a linear text, a reconfigured archive allows multiplicity, simultaneity and disruption. It allows the reader to travel between different times, places and objects of investigation, enabling multiple connections and complex affinities between themes, concepts and ideas that are not limited to a single place, era, author or type. A reconfigured archive can produce new interconnected categories out of archival boxes, a universe of multitudes that does not necessarily need to be transcribed in linear time. I see the use of history as a creative and generative medium for contemporary concerns in design education and practice; one that does not only promote public engagement with historical material, but also makes evident that in the history of ideas, discourses get recycled. Concepts emerge as allegedly new, though ideas undergo long journeys of migration from one epistemological field to another.