How Simple Interfaces Can Inspire Creativity

How Simple Interfaces Can Inspire Creativity
Arts & Culture

Simple, intuitive and playful interface provides a wellspring of user generated experimentation.

Stephen Fortune
  • 28 january 2011

Forming part of the Museum of Modern Art’s forthcoming ‘Talk to Me’ exhibition Crispin Jones’ Tengu is a great example of how a streamlined intuitive interface can spark creative interaction possibilities among it’s user base.

The Tengu features a streamlined, LED driven ‘face’, which reacts to sound in a number of different ways. The Tengu is notable for the community of fan driven videos of the device: each one illustrating the different creative possibilities that result from a simple set of possible interactions.  As MoMa notes

The object launched a series of animations ranging from stylized, experimental to the absurd, where users have envisioned their own Tengu worlds with the simplest of movie-making techniques

Most striking was the use of 89 Tengus in a Choral Performance(pictured above). Check out the video below to see how the Tengu operates, and the Cripin Jones website for a selection of fan created videos.


+Electronics & Gadgets
+Interaction Design

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