The giant wheel in use during opening night of WANTEDxDESIGN 2018.

Giant Hamster Wheel

Industrial Design & Fabrication | SVA MFA PoD ❧
When designing and fabricating the Giant Hamster Wheel, my team and I aimed to create something exciting and different than anything else seen at NYCxDESIGN. Traditionally, design exhibitions are filled with one-of-a-kind prototypes that can rarely be used or tried out.

"The Hamster Wheel
Visually enticing and engaging, the Hamster Wheel entices guests into the exhibition with its carnival-like nature. Once a participant steps into the wheel, they are prompted with the question “Whom do you admire?” and given four choices: Indiana Jones, Mother Teresa, Marie Curie or Steve Jobs.Participants select their answer with a full-body interaction: walking in the wheel until they reach their final response. They discover that the real meaning behind their answer is a correlation to their level of satisfaction with life."
– MFA Products of Design


Designed for delight, the Wheel allowed over 1,000 visitors to onboard into The Datalogue in the most inviting way possible: walking or running on a giant hamster wheel. The final design had to be safe for hundreds of attendees of different ages/sizes and knockdown for ease of transport. The final mechanics had to be both simple and cheaply made to remain within budget without compromising safety in any way. Due to these constraints, the influences by Bobby Redd & Robb Godshaw ended up showing the idea was possible but had to be re-engineered from the ground up.

As part of a more extensive four-part exhibition, The Datalogue, the hamster wheel did more than subvert expectations. It also invited the audience into participating in the research project around data mining and data dark patterns instead of only observing.

Featured as one of Core77’s Best of WantedDesign 2018
Read more on MFA Products of Design's Blog
Role
Industrial Design, Fabrication, Prototyping

Program

SVA MFA Products of Design

Direction
Sinclair Smith
Allan Chochinov

Fabrication Team
Carly Simmons
Hannah Rudin
Sophie Carrillo
Rhea Bhandari
Eugenia Ramos Alonso
Ben Bartlett
John Boran Jr.

Other Datalogue Contributers
Evie Cheung
Ellen Rose
Xuan Wang
Gustav Ole Dyrhauge
Antya Waegemann
Phuong Anh Nguyen
Yangying Ye
Runshi Wei
Tzu Ching Lin
Zihan Chen
Micah Lynn
André Orta

Influences
Allbirds SoHo by Bobby Redd
Robb Godshaw’s Hamster Wheel Desk

Dimensions
7.5' tall x 3.5' wide

Year

February–May, 2018
Opening Night WANTEDxDESIGN 2018
The whole Datalogue team at opening night of WANTEDxDESIGN 2018.
A behind the scenes shot of the wheel at WANTEDxDESIGN 2018
A gif showing the giant hamster wheel running.
Copyright © 2022 John Boran Jr. All Rights Reserved.