KIKK Festival 2017 — Invisible Narratives 🦍

KIKK Festival 2017

It’s the start of November which means: it’s time for KIKK Festival. KIKK is a festival about art, technology and creativity that takes place over several days in the beautiful city of Namur, Belgium. The conference is in the Théâtre de Namur and there are showcases of international startups and art installations around the city.

Here’s a short summary of my three favourite talks:

Jifei Ou

Materials by Design

Jifei Ou (designer, researcher and PhD candidate at MIT Media Lab) talked about the many ways we can redesign physical materials. In his research he created hair, foam and hinges — using a high-resolution 3D-printer — with detection and control capabilities. Very interesting!

See more in this video:

Mr Bingo

Mr. Bingo gave the funniest talk of the conference. In his own way, he talked about how he started his career as an illustrator in advertising. In 2011, he started his “Hate Mail” project, where strangers paid him to send a handwritten, offensive postcard to a name and address of their choice. This self-initiated project was so successful that in 2015 he decided not to work for customers anymore.

Mr. Bingo

Now, he makes his money by creating books, art and he has just launched an advent calendar where you can “undress” a person by scratching-off their clothes.

Mr. Bingo’s 2017 Advent Calendar


Claudio Guglieri (design director at Microsoft) talked about our daily relationships with digital interfaces. Considering how much time we spend with apps on our phones, tablets, PC’s and game-consoles, Claudio decided to draw a comparison between them as our digital homes and our real day to day living environment. In software that we use daily, improvements are often done in small steps, with a focus on ease of use.

Claudio Guglieri

However, marketing sites are often visited once and can (or should?) be enriched with design patterns such as fade-in transitions, animations and video. This could be compared to visiting a hotel, where a visitor can easily find their way and it’s a nice surprise if there is a chocolate treat on your pillow. I think there lies the challenge for digital designers: that users are not unnecessarily surprised, but rather delighted by design.

These were just three of the talks I liked the most. There were also great talks about Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and even how design could help disabled people. I left feeling very inspired and look forward to next year’s festival.

Want to go to KIKK too? Join us!