Interviews

18:24

For our last assignment we were asked to to interact with ordinary people in the form of interviews. I decided to interview people about 'How people accumulate stuff". I found it quite an interesting task. In the beginning I was quite nervous about interviewing strangers. I did some brainstorming thinking what kind of things I wanted to know and what to ask. I sorted out a range of questions to ask which I thought would help me to get the answers I was looking for.

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These are the questions I can up with:
  1. Do you or have you ever collected stuff? If yes what?
  2. Do you own stuff you no longer use?
  3. Do you keep unwanted gifts? why?
  4. Have you inherited anything? If yes what?
  5. Do you keep these for memories or for use?
  6. Do you own stuff just for their memories?
  7. What do you keep in your drawers and cupboards?
  8. Do you use all these objects?
I decided to interview four people ranging from age 19 to mid 40's. I found from asking my questions I was able to find a lot about the type of stuff the interviewee's accumulated.
The answers I received were all pretty similar showing that mainly everyones accumulates stuff the same way. The general reason is to remind them of the memories an object holds, for example, things from past hobbies such as ice skating gear to collections of teddy bears, china table ware and a large amount of jewellery. The jewellery had been past down through the family through generations and generations or given to the interviewee on a special occasion. This was what I love about jewellery how it can have such valued meanings to someone and how it will be treasured for years. From interviewing these people it even came up that these were kept not for money value but for sentimental value. I find this very important in jewellery, I feel like if people bought my jewellery i would really want them to treasure it and not just have it for a little while, while it's in fashion.
It also came up that they kept objects through guilt and would feel to bad throwing it out or felt it could come to good use one day. This has luckily benefited me, people feeling this way, as I have been given many random things from my grandparents which have been very useful for my art and jewellery work.
A lot of them kept objects in their room that they hold on to but don't use, including jewellery. This also made me think how great an idea it is to change old jewellery that people no longer like and redesign it to something they would wear. This keeping the memory and the piece but it being useful instead of it sitting in a box. After discussing this with classmates, I realised I could have asked more questions about what is in their house, a class mate asked this and had a lot of interesting outcomes. From talking about it I felt this interviewing process helped me to link different subjects to jewellery and showed me how link things back to my discipline, also to be more comfortable talking to strangers, Some of the questions were quite personal to people as they had objects reminding them of family/friends who have died. I found it quite difficult but also surprising that people were comfortable to talk about this, you could see it brought them good memories. For me I feel this is how I would like some of my jewellery to be treasured to remind people of good times in their lives.

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