Allen Sayegh wins Creative City Challenge

Allen Sayegh’s (adjunct associate professor of architectural technology) firm INVIVIA has won the inaugural Creative City Challenge to produce a major public interactive art project in the city of Minneapolis. INVIVIA collaborated with Urbain_dr/c on the design for MIMMI: The Minneapolis Interactive Macro Mood Installation. The design team included Carl Koepcke (MArch ’12), Jack Cochran, Brad Cantrell (MLA ’03), Artem Melikyan, Yuichiro Takeuchi (MDes ’12) and Peter Mabardi.

The Creative City Challenge invited architects, landscape architects, urban designers, engineers, scientists, artists and individuals of all backgrounds to create a temporary, interactive, site-specific, eco-focused portal to the city on the plaza of the Minneapolis Convention Center for display this summer.

MIMMI will be a large cloud-like inflatable balloon hovering 35 feet above the ground and visible for blocks around the site. It will be an emotional gateway bringing Minneapolis residents and visitors together to participate in the collective mood of the city.

In an age when we can be instantaneously connected virtually, while simultaneously distanced physically, MIMMI seeks to challenge this paradox and unify the virtual and physical layers of community. It will use technology to collect and reflect the aggregate mood of Minneapolis through abstracted colorful light displays and climatic behavior, inviting serendipitous gatherings under the installation.

Whether the city is elated following a Twins win or frustrated from the afternoon commute, MIMMI will reflect these fluctuations, draw residents to the Convention Center as a central meeting space and encourage exploration of downtown and other areas around the city. Further, the Creative City Challenge aims to draw attention to the city’s natural assets, particularly its robust cadre of architects and designers, and to attract new talent to the area.