From fast food to fast fashion, our culture is obsessed with speed. Being in constant motion is a plight for which we often underhandedly praise ourselves even at the cost of our health, happiness and quality of life.
There is a brewing backlash from this fast paced life— often refereed to as the Slow Movement — where people are clamoring for a life of simplicity sans microwaves and Facebook updates.
Designed by German artist Lorenz Potthast, the Decelerator Helmet, an interactive wearable, falls into the camp of the Slow Movement. As a critical response to our cultural obsession with speed, the Decelerator Helmet alters the wearers perception of the world by visually slowing down reality in real time. The helmet decouples the user’s perception from natural timing, allowing the user to experience time differently and the world in slow motion. Using a small, handheld controller, the user is given ultimate control of the experience by being able to slow down or speed up the elapsing of time.
The helmet is designed with a head-mounted display inside the helmet that displays the altered video. The video is simultaneously displayed on a monitor outside of the helmet.
Ironically, as advocates of the Slow Movement often blame technology as the culprit for modern life’s speedy pace, Potthast uses technology as the creative means of slowing that very life down.