Deconstructing Functionality: Meet the UFO Media Lab

UFO Media Lab works with artists and technologists to explore the social applications of technology experimental and R&D projects.


These days, technology is inescapable, so you might as well immerse yourself in what it has to offer and use it to your benefit. At least, that’s the reasoning behind the work ethic of Chinese artists Wu Juehui and Shao Ding, who head up UFO Media Lab and “virtual lab” MeatMedia—two companies that work with artists and technologists to explore the social applications of technology through experimental and R&D projects.

Both Juehui and Ding have a theater background, and they incorporate some of the tricks they learned from that trade in their installations, building on their theatrical foundation to create works that filter the experience of technology through performance, spectacle, and architectural forms.

Whether that be site-specific work or experimental pieces like their collaboration with Vega Zaishi Wang for The Creators Project, the intergalactic fashion show Alpha Lyrae. Or Brain Station 2, which features a lightbulb affixed to a helmet that’s controlled by the wearer’s brainwaves. “The purpose was to deconstruct the usual function of things.” Juehui says of the piece in the video above. “With these projects we rediscover our conditions."

Learn more about them in our documentary above and check out a selection of their work below.

Brain Station 2
Close your eyes to light up the bulb.

Recontextualizing an historic building through 3D projection mapping.

USB Organs

Channeling human experience through technological tentacles.

via David Leavitt / Twitter and RealTargetTori / Twitter

Last Friday, GOOD reported on an infuriating incident that went down at a Massachusetts Target.

A Target manager who's come to be known as "Target Tori," was harassed by Twitter troll David Leavitt for not selling him an $89 Oral-B Pro 5000 toothbrush for a penny.

He describes himself as a "multimedia journalist who has worked for CBS, AXS, Yahoo, and others."

Keep Reading
via David Leavitt / Twitter

Anyone who has ever worked in retail knows that the worst thing about the job, right after the pay, are the unreasonable cheapskates who "want to talk to your manager" to get some money off an item.

They think that throwing a tantrum will save them a few bucks and don't care if they completely embarrass themselves in the process. Sometimes that involves belittling the poor employee who's just trying to get through their day with an ounce of dignity.

Twitter is rallying around a gal named Tori who works at a Target in Massachusetts after she was tweet-shamed by irate chapekate, journalist, and Twitter troll, David Leavitt.

Keep Reading
via Haldean Brown / Flickr

In a typical work day, people who smoke take more breaks than those who do not. Every few hours they pop outside to have a smoke and usually take a coworker with them.

Don Bryden, Managing director at KCJ Training and Employment Solutions in Swindon, England, thinks that nonsmokers and smokers should be treated equally, so he's giving those who refrain from smoking four extra days to compensate.

Funny enough, Bryden is a smoker himself.

Keep Reading