God Design

you tell me your daily life concern, a god that I designed will be given to you to address that problem. Believe it or not, keep it or not, it’s up to you.

Chenhe Zhang



Human beings create gods or gods create human beings, that is a romantic question. Growing up in a society where I could be exposed to both polytheism and monotheism, I was thinking, while new gadgets and tools were invented and upgraded to enhance people’s lives, gods haven't been updated for a rather long time. To explore the possibility of creating new gods who could specifically address problems and issues in human's daily life in a contemporary context, I use the term “god design” which means utilizing design thinking in creating new gods, everything in this project begins with this concept.

The basic layer of god design is to “design” new gods that work in a modern way, they use familiar objects that we usually see in our everyday life to impose their power just like the traditional gods use their weapons, however, the scenario they use the objects is not as usual. To showcase the gods and communicate with the audience, a booth-like interactive installation and a website are developed as “god search engine”, where the audience could input their daily life concern and being returned with a certain god that relates to their input in the form of a card. The installation took the concept of small size “pop-up” shrines that usually can be found in Japan and India, it will be finished in a hi-tech product aesthetic, and the website will be visually simple and playful.

This project is not aiming at creating a new religion, it is more about looking at everyday life from another angle, focusing on the small daily problems and concerns, delivered in a more absurd and playful way, but still, with its whimsical nature, I hope it could bring positive attitudes and a delightful experience to the audience.

IMA/ITP New York