A nice simple interview with Milton Glaser talking about the concepts behind a few of the many pieces he has designed for SVA over the past fifty years. It’s really empowering to hear someone so great speak about how sometimes in his finished work the concept is lost or doesn’t communicate the way it was intended. This is nicely humbling idea that I think we, as designers, can all relate to.
Rietveld Landscape was commissioned by Netherlands Architecture Institute to create an installation for the Dutch submission to the architecture biennale as a means of creating a call to action. The subject they have visualized and hopefully communicated to the Dutch government is the enormous amount of potential that lies in vacant buildings spanning the 17th to 21st centuries. RL makes the argument that this land can be activated through innovation and can help to resolve “major challenges facing society today”. See more photos and read more about the exhibition here.
I was lucky enough to have attended this amazingly inspiring and fun talk by the great Frank Chimero and presented by the equally amazing Liz Danzico and the MFA IxD, SVA program, which runs this amazing series of events called The Fall Lecture Series. I wanted to post this because of how informative and fun the talk was for me, and if you want to here some of my thoughts check out my previous post here.
This three minute video, which animates and brings to life the Gettysburg Address is a beautiful example of how design can revive a historic speech and document that we now take for granted or don’t even remember. Adam Gault uses some beautiful imagery including those really bad ass stampeding buffalo.
Albam a UK clothing company hired amazing photographer John Spinks to shoot the workers and factories where their clothes are manufactured. This project was compiled into a book of captivating portraits, gripping factory scenes and before you know it you are fully engaged in their story.
Existing as on of the few companies that has values, Albam is sticking to them. Designing and producing quality goods at home in the UK using multigenerational factories with lifelong craftspeople. Taking the time and money required to document their story or at least the story of their clothing and the people who make it will no doubt do it’s part to keep their craft alive in the future.
This is a great documentary style film that interviews a group of New York trend setters, and the people who know what is going to be cool next. It is all about the avenues of inspiration and it even briefly gets into how we maybe influenced in the future. Street style as it has been empowered by the social media and networking on the internet is a good example of something that is changing before our eyes at a pace much more rapid than ever before. This subject matter is super interesting to me partially because I am conflicted about whether or not I like being told or “influenced” by the smoke and mirrors of marketing trends. The verdict is still out though, and this is a must watch.
The good folks behind Oficina Informal, Antonio Yemail and Michel Pineda, did a complete overhaul on an old barn and turned it into an amazing live work space. Great use of recycled, salvage and existing materials and resources. I would live in this “barn” in a heart beat.
Minka is a short documentary film currently in the works by filmmaker Davina Pardo. The word “minka” in Japanese refers to a private home of a farmer, artisan or merchant. The house that the story revolves around is a 250 year old farmhouse, which Yoshihiro Takishita and John Roderick found, moved and restored together. If you are as eager as I am to see the full length film head over to Kickstarter and help fund the project.
Digesting all my rss feeds after a ten day vacation is a pretty hearty task. When I came across this little gem though it was a breath of fresh air. Super minimal and a great solution for people who are sick of painting their apartment. You can pick some up for yourself or as a gift here.
Whether you are like me, and feel that Massimo Vignelli has inspired and informed your view point and approach to design, or not this is a great little documentary. One great statement Vignelli makes, which I have never come across before, is that geometric shapes can last for centuries over ephemeral design, which is much more temporary.
Dong-Ping Wong of Family Architects based here in New York City spoke last Friday at The Feast conference about starting a studio in the worst recession in over a decade and how to make it in architecture based on skills beyond design of excess and luxury.
My favorite example, pictured here, the Plus Pool is a project by Dong-Ping Wong and his studio that is being developed as a product instead of a commissioned structure or concept. Which Dong-Ping explained as being a unique attempt by recession struck architects to design outside status quo.
The Plus Pool would use a unique series of filtration layers in it’s skin to actually filter water as it passes in and out of the pool and into the existing water source. The ability to interact with our cities waterways and engage other members of our community has serious merit, and the design thinking that Family Architects have employed to arrive at this solution is unique and inspiring. Many of their other projects employ engineering and futuristic technologies on a level that seems so simple you might want to bash yourself on the head over it. This approach sets them apart in their field and also gives them a head start in the race to see what architecture will become in the future.
I had been saving this post for a rainy day so to speak, or at least a day where nothing else jumped out at me to post. This video is simply amazing and doesn’t need much an introduction. I hope most of you reading this have seen it, but whether you have or have not it’s worth watching.
The desk is the physical platform we as creatives use to dive off into projects, new ideas, and create change. So as the tools of design adapt, and the problems change that we as designers face does the desk adapt or go the way of the polar ice caps?
There were so many great speakers and amazing people doing such amazing and productive things for their fields and humanity at The Feast. The one that really stood out about them all was Tony Wagner.
First he set himself apart from the hip young crowd and proceeding speakers by opting out of putting us through another monotonous powerpoint presentation. Then he went on the shred the entire education system not just in America, but everywhere. Talking about how we are still teaching using curriculum that predates even our most outdated technology.
Wagner’s real home-run is his concept that hinges on the “7 Skills Students Need for Their Future”, which to me is a critically different way to think about education. Now everything is based on learning skill, which were developed over the last thousand years, but really we should be equipping students with the skills to ensure that humanity can inhabit this planet for another thousand years.
Yesterday I was exposed to some many great new business models and non profit systems. Project 7 was one example that stuck out to me. They sell 7 different coffees where fifty percent of the profits from each purchase is donated to a designated charity depending on the name of the coffee. Some examples are “FEED the hungary” and “HEAL the sick”. The model they have developed is most easily summed up by a tweet my friend Jessi Arrington made during The Feast this past Friday.
“Note to self: start buying Project 7 coffee. It’s what Creighton would call a “win win.” #feastongood”
I am curious how many social problems would exist in the world if all for profit businesses and industries adopted this model.
I had the pleasure to hear Frank Chimero talk last week at the SVA IxD department Fall Lecture Series, and he totally exploded my head. The way Frank is able to look at things makes him so much more than just a designer or educator. His thoughts on life and work in general and the way he applies the philosophies he develops is applicable and inspiring in just about every context.
The first slide I posted is a uniquely fresh approach towards a career path and I really signify with the honesty of it. So often I encounter people who inflate what they are doing or talk about their rigid step by step plan of how they are going to become successful. I find myself baffled and pushed over to Frank’s camp on this one. You can’t plan your life things just happen, but what you can do is tell your self specific things that are important to you along the way and work your ass off to makes those happen while everything else just does its thing.