Student Work

Graduation Series: Erik Hamburger

Fri 12 Apr

Erik Hamburger, a double degree student at both WdKA (Advertising) and Erasmus University (Arts and Culture Studies), embodies the fusion of creativity and cutting-edge tech. With a global perspective shaped by experiences in Germany, China, and Tokyo, Erik explores the impact of Mixed Reality (MR) and speculative design. As he embarks on his graduation project, Erik delves into the dynamic intersection of art, tech, and society, poised to redefine creative expression and innovation.

Erik, could you tell us about your subject of graduation?

“Certainly. For my graduation project, I've been assigned to the thesis group in IBACS, focusing on community and resilience. My art piece (that I will graduate with at WdKA) must be closely linked to my academic research, which initially stemmed from my minor exploration of how we inhabit various spaces and the impact of technology on our perceptions. Specifically, I'm delving into the realm of Mixed Reality (MR) and its implications for our future.”

What motivated you to choose this subject?

“Over the past few years, I've become increasingly intrigued by the intersection of new technology and creativity. My interest lies in understanding how emerging tech, like MR, influences our daily lives and societal dynamics. This exploration is not only relevant but also holds significant implications for our future interactions and experiences.”

What aspect of your project are you most excited about?

“I'm particularly thrilled about experimenting with small design ideas and stepping away from the conventional commercial approach. This project allows me the freedom to play with visual languages and design tools without the pressure of meeting commercial objectives. It's an opportunity for creative exploration and expression, which is incredibly exciting after dedicating five years to my studies.”

On the other side, what concerns you the most about your project?

“My main concern is setting unrealistic expectations for myself and feeling overwhelmed by the scale of the project. As someone who tends to seek solutions, I fear getting stuck in the process of trying to find the perfect answer. However, I'm actively working on managing these concerns and staying focused on the journey rather than fixating solely on the outcome.”

How have your years at WdKA shaped your artistic development?

“My time at WdKA has been transformative, pushing me to question societal norms and explore unconventional approaches to advertising and design. Unlike a more commercially focused education, WdKA encouraged me to view advertising as a medium for deeper exploration and communication. This shift in perspective has allowed me to delve into topics that resonate with me on a personal and societal level.”

Reflecting on your journey, what's the most significant difference between your current self and your first-year self?

“The difference is like night and day. When I started, I was eager to make a splash and explore every exciting opportunity that came my way. However, over time, I've learned the value of patience and dedication in the creative process. Now, I appreciate the importance of sitting down and working through the challenges, knowing that the outcome is often more fulfilling when given proper time and attention.”

Lastly, how do you feel these years have prepared you for your final project and beyond?

“I view my graduation project as a pivotal moment, propelling me into the professional field armed with newfound insights and skills. Through my studies, I've honed my ability to blend creativity with critical thinking, preparing me for a career full of innovation and exploration. Beyond graduation, I envision myself continuing to explore the intersection of technology and design, perhaps even delving into research and innovation projects within advertising.”