Awkward Middle Place
Awkward Middle Place is a co-creation workshop for model-minorities that explores their identities realating to race, assimilation, and individualities.
What It Is
Awkward Middle Place is a co-creation workshop that engages participants to visualize their cultural identities in a fun, 3D collage project. 12 immigrants and children of immigrants participated to address questions about race, equity and acculturation in their identities. This experimental workshop was hosted at MFA Products of Design on November 18, 2017.
How It Works
The participants were asked to answer below questions in each of seven rounds. At the beginning of each round, the banner with the next prompt was revealed, and the participants had seven minutes to shuffle through magazines to find images that best described their answers to the prompt, rip them out, and collage their responses onto the banners. At the end of each round, the participants gathered around the banner to share their works with the group
Questions on the banners
The insights from the workshop resonated very much with the user interviews that I had conducted. In both, my users spoke of the central tension in their identities as between the community they assimilated to and the community they came from. Many described their shame in both not being American enough and losing touch with their cultural heritage. Furthermore, this tension was deeply colored in their relationship with race because the communities they aspired to assimilate were white, while their heritages signaled how exotic, primitive, or even childlike they were.