Published October 20, 2022 | Version v1
Poster Open

Generating Perspectives: Applying Generative Design to critically explore the Atlas of Swiss Folklore

  • 1. University of Bern / Bern University of the Arts HKB


The poster addresses generative design as a methodology for a critical-visual exploration of the 1940s Atlas of Swiss Folklore. When we look at visualizations, we are often intrigued by the idea that they represent naturally existing phenomena through visual form. This poses a challenge to humanities scholars who interpret context-dependent data that represents complex social interweaving that unwind across time and space. The data beneath the Atlas of Swiss Folklore, for example, is the product of a perennial and multilayered process of collection and analysis. This interpretative framework is often no longer comprehensible in the finished visualizations leading to the impression of unambiguous visual statements. But rather than depicting unique meaning, visualizations should invite the viewer to critically question what is being viewed and the circumstances of its creation. The poster presents Generative Design is a promising approach that utilizes morphology and iteration to create a plurality of visualizations. Through Generative Design the Atlas of Swiss Folklore and its circumstances of creation can be examined from different perspectives. Generative Design can be used, for example, to visualize the locations of the atlas data collection in different contexts and thus help evaluate which parts of the population the maps of the atlas are representative or not.



Files (2.7 MB)

Name Size Download all
2.7 MB Preview Download

Additional details


Participatory Knowledge Practices in Analogue and Digital Image Archives CRSII5_193788
Swiss National Science Foundation