Did you just get benched?

By: Nadine Haagmans 

Tutors: Wouter van der Hoog and Myrthe Krepel

Keywords:  Affection, reflection, inviting, pushing 

Design Goal
My design goal is to make people think critically about their opinion on public display of affection for LGBTQ+ couples. 

Interaction Vision
The interactions with my product should be like standing under a mistletoe by yourself. 

Final Design

The bench consists of 3 parts.

Part A, the left part, has a tilted seating area. Pushing users to sit against each other. The silhouettes of the backrest are leaning against each other, showing the posture users are forced to sit in if they sit on this part of the bench together.

Part B is placed in the middle of the 5-seater and has a rotatable hood (see up and down position in added images). Inside the hood the user is confronted with a question: Should everyone be free to love regardless of their sexuality? Underneath two answers are placed with a suggested action: Yes, please lift the hood. | No, please do not lift the hood. This part makes people reflect actively on their opinion on gay public affection. 

Part C has a hollow armrest in the shape of two hands holding each other. From a distance, it looks like the silhouette figures are holding each other’s hands. However, when sitting on the bench, the hollow inner side of the armrest provides an anonymous space for the user to hold hands themselves. Please note that the prototype does not have this feature yet due to a lack of time for more prototyping. 

The bench aims to expose people to gay affection.