The image above is a Kinfolk contact sheet, representing every singleInstagram post from @kinfolk from 2015 to the present, February of 2019. Seeing image-patterns and sampling the most frequent traits, the outputof this data is spatialized into an uncanny Kinfolk-ish environment.

The Wing

This independent research project began as a response to designing 3 branches of The Wing, an exclusive network of coworking and community spaces for women. The design of their spaces was defined by a heavy branding palette developed with Pentagram, cultivating what the New York Times described as an “Instagrammable feminism.”

Looking at The Wing through a reading of Lev Manovich’s Instagram and Contemporary Image, Instagrammers, in this case, @the.wing can own the means of cultural production through a keen understanding of media form,  content and of image culture, and community building. The Wing started with Instagram first, emerging through their content but sustaining themselves with their aesthetic choices.

Social Factories

Kinfolk-ish postulates that co-working space networks are built for and by the realm of social media. Co-working spaces and the congealing of the social and the labor realms, what I'm calling Social Factories, is at the interface of the Cloud and the City. Its internal mechanics are no longer solely spatial; its workings are constructed of curated media, branding, user experience, and world-building. Organizational identity becomes the social community.

I began with Kinfolk, the slow lifestyle magazine brand, as it has well established its affluence in social currency. Kinfolk is an aspirational brand: have this, be this, own this; it is ripe for mining for spatial sociocultural production. Archiving every single Instagram post made by @kinfolk, we can begin to see image-patterns and sample these Kinfolk traits, to which the output of this data is spatialized into an uncanny Kinfolk-ish environment.

Emergent Urban Concatenations

Designing for Social Factories demands a designer who understands the entanglement of capital currency and social currency, perhaps more suited for group ethnographic observations than design intuitions. Maybe then, AI, which has the capability to analyze our individual and collective data at a mass scale would be better suited to engage in this new mode of aesthetic mapping and spatial output.

Rather than top-down city intervention, we can begin small, from room to network. Image produces culture, culture produces space, space produces city; emergent urban concatenations.