Jake Barton, the founder of Local Projects, “an experience design and strategy firm for museums, brands and public spaces in New York” (Wikipedia), gave a thought-provoking presentation called “Like Falling in Love” at Eyeo 2012. After graduating from Northwestern University with a degree in performance studies, Barton started designing sets on Broadway then worked for Ralph Applebaum Associates then finally founded Local Projects.
Barton works on making installations and public spaces relatable to visitors/viewers through technology. Though not highly discussed in his Eyeo speech, Barton was co-leader of the team that figured out how to list the names of the 9/11 victims on the new memorial. Instead of going alphabetically, he and his team found a way to list the victims through personal connections. As mainly a humanities, writing, student, I’m very interested in the ways that technology can bring people together and make things like art and perceptions more accessible to everyone.
When he presents, Barton is confident. He goes chronologically through the production of a project, sometimes even discussing the failed ideas. He gives multiple real life examples and uses visual aids. I’d like to learn to be as relaxed while presenting as Barton appears to be.