Symposium and Publication. 2021
Digital. Visual. Material Symposium


This talk interrogates the representational stakes of shiny surfaces in the designed world. I work through two surfacing processes, which although analogous in visual effect are worlds apart in process and material effect— rendering of chrome graphical objects and decorative chrome plating of physical objects. I demonstrate how a situated and embodied approach to the process of surfacing casts it as not only a technical accomplishment, but also a social one. By expanding the site of this sociotechnical accomplishment, I present a taxonomy of the work involved in producing shiny surfaces, and the visual, cultural, and political representations that encode them.