YOLO brought “Make Your Mark” to the London Design Festival (23-26 September 2010). As part of the DesignersBlock London 2010 event at the Bargehouse on London’s historic South Bank, we filled a long, light-filled room with reams of white paper spread out in “waves” on the floor. Black balloons drifted lazily across the room, each with a black pencil knotted to the end of its string. We also put up three poster displays with its design manually punched out using a hole-punch tool. These posters spoke of the lives of three Singaporeans (Lindy Poh, Tong Yee and David Tan) and what “make your mark” means to them.
Unlike the other showpieces that often warned “Do not touch”, our display invited visitor participation, “Make your mark”. From the first day of the show, without any prompting visitors began to stoop or sit on the floor, drawing, shading or writing thoughtfully on random sections of paper. Children loved the balloons and pencils, of course, but so did visitors of all ages and backgrounds: designers, students and teachers from design schools, curators, magazine editors and artists. There was even an elderly woman who couldn’t bend her knees, so she left her “mark” on our guestbook instead.
Over the next four days, the eight-metre long canvas was filled with all kinds of scrawls, scribbles, cartoons and messages, from a detailed illustration of a man and a bird, to a random quirky cat, to a simple line work of a dog . People toyed with the balloons, took pictures of themselves interacting with the installation, came back with their friends, bought our “If life were a pencil …” journals – and snuck off with our pencils! (Good thing we brought lots with us.)
As some visitors said:
- “I loved watching people drawing out their ideas!”
- “This brings beauty and meaning to life.”
- “Thank you! For reminding me of the meaning of YOLO and giving this magical message.”
- “What a great way to make people happy. Excellent show!”
1 creative team
8 metres of white paper
80 “If life were a pencil …” journals
500 black balloons
800 little black pencils
Over 6000 stepped through our doors.
See more pictures of the event here!