Lucia Dossin


Oscilating between art and design, my work looks at actual, possible and desirable relationships between humans and computers through its fundamentals: user- friendliness, interfaces, user-generated data and technological literacy. These are not stand-alone topics - they relate to bigger and more complex matters, such as work, privacy, culture, socio-economic structures, environmental issues and citizenship. As humans' relationship with computers is primarily (and historically) based on the notion of labour mitigation, effort is a common element in my practice.

In my work I try to involve a broad audience, which makes me search for different strategies, supports and contexts. A recurrent method, though, is the modification of one single aspect of one element in a 'scene' - be it structural, aesthetic or functional. While remaining within a frame that is familiar to the user, the original (modified) aspect is highlighted by contrast. It is an attempt to approach complex matters - social issues within a dialectical perspective - in a form which is aesthetically accessible to many.

One important aspect in my work is the desire to question the usual conception of the term 'user-friendliness'. Described by the Oxford Learner's Dictionary as 'the quality of being easy for people who are not experts to use or understand', the term acquires a radical meaning if 'or' is substituted with 'and'. In Let me Think I attempt to deconstruct the traditional interpretation of user-friendliness by intercepting the button-click that places the order into the shopping cart, in Amazon websites.

The economic relevance of user-generated data is a topic I explored in AddWords, a performance and application based on Google's ad system, made for an evening of lectures about the Gig Economy. Resembling stock market displays - fed with manual transcriptions of the lectures during the evening and processed by Google Ad system - the project illustrates the current financial - and power - circuit comprising data, money, digital infrastructure and work.

In order to comment on work automation, labour versus leisure, creative professions and authenticity - all intrinsically related - I created Excelfie - Derivation #1. Trying to claim back part of what has been transferred to computers from us, humans, I combine digital culture and social media (here represented by the selfie), algorithmic analysis and workflow automation to perform the role of a human printer. The production process is slow and error-prone but the resulting selfies are nevertheless extremely popular.

I am interested in exploring metaphors and designing interactions that require co- participation. Intelligible content and active interaction with a broad audience are central elements in my practice - as topic, method and goal.