Fossilizing Machine
Triggering childrens curiosity about fossils and how they form.
2018 / Academic Project
Interactive Products
Einar Sneve Martinussen

A four-week interaction design module working with the Natural History Museum in Oslo.

The brief was to create an interactive installation related to one of the museum’s departments. The user group was young school children visiting the museum.

The Fossilizing Machine invites the user to explore different animal skeletons, choose their favourite and use them as a stamping tool to form their own fossil.

The installation aims to teach children about the process of forming fossils by the user having to apply preassure over time until the machines signals that the fossilization process is finished. The product is a clay fossil for the user to bring home.

How is the phenomenon of fossilization explained to children today?
Ideation on how to translate written knowledge about the fossilization process into a physical and interactive installation. The two factors of preassure and time needed to be an embodied experience in the installation.
Installations ment for children to use, must be built to last. Prototyping with card board helped in testing the experience, figure out the dimensions and plan for durability.