Critical Cooking Show
Project
object*oriented*magic
Designer
Ayşenaz Toker and Merve Tuna
Synopsis

object*oriented*magic creates new superstitions as an antidote to our relationship with the material world, which is framed by a rationalist approach to apprehending reality. Drawing from vernacular folk beliefs, psycho-magic, witchcraft, alchemy and astrological methods; o*o*m creates ritualistic assemblages with everyday objects, recharging them with magic, mystery and myth and revealing their inherent vibrancy.

Using everyday objects as ingredients for spells, the manual of object*oriented*magic offers guidance on handling everyday problems to the lost souls of the modern world. Three recipes from the manual are selected for this episode of the Critical Cooking Show. *Divided They Fall* transposes a folk spell into the work environment, using office objects along with cats and dogs to disperse colleagues who are against you. A spell to increase the chance of mating, *Winds of Change & Weeds of Sex* directs the energy of sexual residues to the spell-maker with the help of everyday objects. *Delivering the Proof in the Policy of Truth* uses kitchen tools to expose hypocrites, peeling off their masks and feeding their skin back to them. By introducing a layer of irrationality, o*o*m suggests alternative narratives that go beyond normative human-object relations, reframing the meanings assigned to the things that occupy our environment.

Biography

Ayşenaz Toker is a product designer and instructor at the Istanbul Bilgi University, with a B.ID. from METU and MA from RCA. Interested in the implicit language of things and the meanings and histories surrounding the objects, she extracts the associations attached to the things that occupy our environment. She collects, combines and transposes these references to design objects that are based on visual and physical memory. She also teaches workshops, organises exhibitions and writes on relations between craft, design and education.

Merve Tuna is a designer and an artist with a product design B.Sc. from ITU and a fashion design MA from LCF. She crafts prosthetic objects for everyday life that project the libidinal aspect of social relations. Investing in the noumenal dimension of prosthesis with hidden narratives, she makes films and examines the cultural and emotional meanings of these fictional objects, how they mediate intersubjective relations and whether they trigger shifts in existing perceptions. She works in various media as <mervetuna, designs objects, games and rituals, and teaches workshops.

Both interested in the construction of associative meanings connected to objects, Toker and Tuna initiated object*oriented*magic to design experiences that suggest a change in our perspective in interrelating with the material world. Employing a parallel approach, they design and run workshops together.

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