EVOKE Lab and Studio



Parresia is a system designed to bring attention back to the things that matter to you. Deceptively simple, it consists of a ritualized practice of creating a small paper ball using origami folding techniques that represents a (usually unquantifiable) goal–be more patient, get more sleep, go to more baseball games–the things that never seem to make it onto your overcrowded to-do lists of papers to write, emails to return, or meetings to attend. The purpose of Parresia is to create a physical object and place where the goals we don’t write down are recognized and reflected upon.

Parresia Project Team:

  • Mathias Crawford, Stanford
  • Shreeharsh Kelkar, MIT
  • Kyle Rentschler, NYU
  • Luke Stark, NYU
  • Eryn Whitworth, University of Texas-Austin
  • Heather Wiltse, Indiana University

Parresia’s design challenge: The Qualified Self

The ‘quantified self’ is generically a movement wherein individuals make themselves, their biology and genetics, the subject and object of algorithmic living and substantial numerical representation. However, these quantifications generally focus on the measurable, tangible quantities of a person while ignoring the intangibles that directly contribute both to health and quality of life. You challenge is to design a system for the ‘qualified self’ that includes a procedure for the measurement and encouragement of contentment, pleasure, peace, and affirmation and similar intangibles.

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