a pile of cardboard boxes and muslin with a drawing printed on them

Promises, Gifts and the Future Machine

The first batch of gifts have been sent out to people who made Promises last year as part of The Prediction Machine exhibition.  Those who made a promise and signed up to join the Future Machine will be getting a special edition artwork in the post over the next few weeks.  There are three batches to send out – 67 in total, they are all made by hand by the artist Rachel Jacobs and are unique for each person.

The gift includes a cardboard box, a card explaining what the gift is with your unique code written on it so that you can log in to the website and a small clay tablet with your promise embossed on it, wrapped in a white muslin sheet that has a blueprint for the future machine printed on it.

The first phase of the Future Machine involved making these promises gifts alongside designing the Future Machine website. This considers what it means to make a long term commitment and keep thinking about it as the future unfolds. Here you can choose to change your promise, make and receive comments of support to help keep the promises and also make updates on how well you are doing, the difficulties and the successes.

Experiments in imagining what a Future Machine might look like also took place as part of the workshops that have happened around the country as part of the Performing the Future project (in Liverpool, Cambridge and Nottingham) with different communities exploring what it might mean to design and build a system that would help us respond to environmental change as the future unfolds.

The next phase of the Future Machine will be to come together in 2019 across different places in the UK (and possibly further afield) to build a large future machine that grows and changes as it tours. More information coming soon…

12 clay tablets with promises embossed on them laid out on newspaper