Graduation 2016 Project

Anna-Mea Hoffmann

Department: Design Curating and Writing


We are facing a sleep crisis. For the first time in history,
sleeplessness is being recognised as a public health epidemic,
wreaking havoc on our physical and mental health. According
to the National Sleep Foundation, the average amount of
sleep has decreased from 8 hours per night in 1960 to 6.5 hours
today. What could account for such a drastic shift? To what
extent are designed products and technologies preventing us
from sleeping? And how does design now enable people
to ‘optimise’ their sleep? Anna-Mea Hoffmann examines these
issues in ‘On-Off’.
She observes how the economic and societal pressures
of modern Western society appear to be shifting the context of
sleep from natural restorative into a commodity and meticulously
designed construct. Meanwhile, the market for sleeping aids
reveals that design is largely battling the symptoms of sleep
deficiency rather than the causes. More alarmingly, design may
actually be contributing to our sleep deprivation.

Copyright Design Academy Eindhoven

Copyright: Design Academy Eindhoven
Photographs: Photo by Designer