Research project, ECAL 2017


Teacher(s): Patrick Keller, Christophe Guignard

Inhabiting and Interfacing the Cloud(s)

The design research I&IC (Inhabiting and Interfacing the Cloud(s), explores the creation of counter-proposals to the current expression of “Cloud Computing”, particularly in its forms intended for private individuals and end users (“Personal Cloud”).

I&IC is to offer an alternative point of view, a critical appraisal as well as an “access to tools” about this iconic infrastructure of our modernity and its user interfaces, because to date their implementation has followed a logic chiefly of technical development, mainly governed by corporate interests, and continues therefore to be paradoxically envisioned as a purely functional, centralized setup.

However, the Personal Cloud holds a potential that is largely untapped in terms of design, novel uses and territorial strategies. Through its cross-disciplinary approach that links interaction design, the architectural and territorial dimensions as well as ethnographic studies, our project aims at producing alternative models resulting from a more contemporary approach, notably factoring in the idea of creolization (theorized by E. Glissant).

Website: http://www.iiclouds.org/

Main applicant
Ecole cantonale d’art de Lausanne (ECAL)
Patrick Keller (professor, project leader)
Christophe Guignard (professor)
Lucien Langton (assistant)

Haute Ecole d’Art et de Design - Genève (HEAD-GE)
Nicolas Nova (professor)
Charles Chalas (

James Auger (Auger – Loizeau)
Dr. Christian Babski (fabric | ch)
Matthew Plummer-Fernandez (#algopop)

From September 2014 to July 2017

Funded by the HES-SO (University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland)

©ECAL/Daniela Droz & Tonatiuh Ambrosetti

©ECAL/Daniela Droz & Tonatiuh Ambrosetti

Andrea Branzi, 1969, Research for « No-Stop City »

City subway, somewhere, 2013. Users, participants, content creators, consumers, products, …?

Google Earth, 2014. Facebook data centers, Prineville, Oregon (USA)