The cool thing about the fledgling years of airmail is how intertwined it really was with the military and WWI. This was a time when flight had just started to be considered for actual combat reasons, and a major problem was that pilots in Europe were getting lost in the sky, which resulted in running out of fuel and crashing. The initial idea was that new pilots would hone their orienteering skills through delivering mail from Washington, D.C. to New York daily. But after helping kickstart the airmail operation, the military seemed to sink into the woodwork except for when planes or equipment were needed. And not to mention a good handful of adventurous pilots.
As time passes I am becoming more and more excited about making a popup exhibition for Uncle Sam's Suicide Club. Although I've been to my fair share of museums and exhibits (from the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam to the Louvre- which has a beautifully euphoric branding system) my ultimate design aspirations would be to combine the infographic wonder of the Design Museum in London with the interactive nature of The Columbus Museum of Art.
Both of these museums take an extra step to bring the content they host to life, be it through materials, layout and interaction. When people visit my exhibit I want their to forgot what they've become conditioned to think about mail (aka it is simply expected) and instead delight in it's rich history. I plan on tapping into this period when mail delivery aroused a sense of national pride in our country. Not because we got our letters, but because we did so with the daring dedication of our airmen.
My next steps are to start conceptualizing how interaction can occur between the exhibit and the viewers and nail down who my mentors will be. I already have two great options and am looking forward to getting their feedback on my thesis topic.
**Fun Fact: The images above are from by trip to London in 2012 when I saw the Designed to Win exhibit. The exhibit "analyzed key moments where design played a significant role in progressing sport, the exhibition looked at themes of safety, performance, fashion, new materials and technology." And it totally rocked!