“Codes in Notes” is an investigation that combines pre-colonial with modern day knowledge and fosters a design process leading from the digital to the material and vice versa. Such an approach allows not only for a deeper understanding of the Khipus, Inca's knotted strings for recording data, but also for an exploration of the aesthetics of knots in design and architecture.
This attempt is rooted in three critical perspectives on design that form the project’s analytical framework and can be described as decolonial, feminist and personal. The decolonial perspective refers from the notion that history and historical artifacts from any kind and material have for many years been predominantly interpreted from a “western” perspective that tended to neglect other cultures and knowledge systems in a colonial fashion. By joining pre-colonial with modern technologies, thereby revalidating heterogenous knowledge systems and reintroducing them into the field of design, this project presents a decolonial perspective on creativity, design and technology.
Parallel to problematizing the implications of interpreting Khipus from a colonial standpoint, this project intends to point out that learning and knowledge about digital technologies are embedded in structural power relations that foster an unequal distribution of the means to influence and control technologies and technological development. Understanding that these relations are heavily organised around gender and gender stereotypes, this work aswell takes a feminist perspective.
So, what consequences emerges for our increasingly digital present and future when there is no diversity in the field of technology? What kind of impact does this have on our creative approaches? And what can be done about that, that is to say, how do we promote the participation of female designers in the field of digital technologies and which technologies could in turn be used to do so? Without giving definite answers, this work tries to identify new forms of design practices from a gender equality perspective and to extend the space of possibilities for women in design.