Alicia Eggert & Safwat Saleem

The Future

2015

 
The Future debuts at TED2015, at the Fellows Lounge. Photo: Mike Femia/TED

The Future debuts at TED2015, at the Fellows Lounge. Photo: Mike Femia/TED

The base of each light bulb is etched with the name of a sovereign state. Photo: Mike Femia

The base of each light bulb is etched with the name of a sovereign state. Photo: Mike Femia

 

The Future illuminates the overall state of peace or conflict around the world. Each light bulb represents one of the world’s 206 sovereign states; bulbs representing states at peace are lit, while bulbs representing states in conflict are unlit.

By intentionally simplifying complex issues and representing peace and conflict as binary on/off states, The Future is designed to instigate conversations and create awareness about conflicts across the globe that affect billions of people. The Future may look rather grim and dark at this particular moment in time, but our hope is that the project inspires people to reflect on what can be accomplished to make the world brighter and more peaceful.

Determinations regarding the peace or conflict status of individual sovereign states are made using data culled from the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) and warsintheworld.com.

 
 

 
 

Alicia Eggert (born 1981) is an interdisciplinary artist whose work focuses on the relationship between language, image and time. Her artwork often moves, changes, deteriorates, and in some cases, even dies. Alicia's work has been exhibited at notable institutions nationally and internationally, including the CAFA Art Museum in Beijing; the Triennale Design Museum in Milan; SIGGRAPH Asia in Hong Kong; the International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA2012) at the Albuquerque Museum of Art and History; Cyberfest in St. Petersburg, Russia; Sculpture By the Sea in Sydney, Australia; Artefact Festival in Leuven, Belgium; and throughout the US, UK, Europe and Canada. It has been featured in The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, and VICE, and in publications such as Typoholic: Material Types in Design, Foundations of Digital Art and Design with Adobe Creative Cloud, and Elements and Principles of 4D Art & Design. The awards and accolades Alicia has received include a 2014 Direct Artist Grant from the Harpo Foundation, the 2014 Individual Artist Fellowship from the Maine Arts Commission, the Grand Prize in the Dave Bown Projects Competition, and a TED2013 Fellowship. She has given talks at TED2013 in Long Beach and TEDxDirigo in Maine, and spoken at numerous other conferences and universities around the world. She currently lives and works in Philadelphia. aliciaeggert.com

 

 
 
 

Safwat Saleem is a graphic designer, artist and filmmaker. By day, he is a creative director at Arizona State University, one of the largest American public universities. By night, he makes mostly satirical artwork. In a past life, he founded an online music magazine called Bandbaja that focused on Pakistani music as a socio-political tool. Since then, he has worked on a variety of multi-media art projects. Some of his work includes a short film, picture book and a gallery exhibit about a day in the life of a lonely bear that longs to travel to space and a satirical exhibit about race and immigration-related politics in Arizona. safwatsaleem.com