Storefront Stories – project introduction.

Storefront Stories is a project that culminates much of the work I have been doing in my thesis studies thus far. In partnership with the City of Pasadena, the work is proposed to be installed in a vacant storefront in the Pasadena’s Playhouse District. I am currently working with the City Council to make the following project proposal happen as part of the city’s initiative to install public art works in empty storefronts around the city.

In the first phase of the installation, users encounter three posters in the storefront window, each representing a different “coming soon” advertisement for three separate, fictional, stores. The three businesses portrayed in the coming soon posters are each generated with the Serendipitous Business Model Generator, a card game I have developed that uses chance to craft scenarios for imaginary businesses and the products / services they offer.

Using an SMS voting system, such as “SMSPOLL,” or other social media outlets such as Foursquare, participants vote for the storefront they wish was there. In doing so, the practice of entrepreneurship is framed as a democratic process. The fictional storefront that has the most votes is installed, complete with a brand and storefront items from the fictional world the store exists. My intention is for the store to blend in with the environment – creating a space for imaginary business in our everyday cityscape.

Download my initial proposal (PDF format), that was recently approved to go to the next stage of development, here.

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