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Archive for the ‘design’Category

A Glimpse into The African and African Caribbean Design Diaspora Festival

This is an excerpt featured on the Studio Museum in Harlem blog, it’s my first in a series of design articles.

London is one of the hottest and most creative cities, bristling with a multicultural community. Yet its Black artists and designers have remained largely untapped. That is until now. Just this past September, London was booming with design festivals showcasing innovative furniture, objects and fabulous fashions. Among them was the latest installment of the African and African Caribbean Design Diaspora Festival, a hotbed of new ideas, inspiration and creativity. This year’s theme, “?Choices!,” attracted some 22,000 visitors (2,000 more than in 2010). The AACDD festival took place from September 9 to 25, coinciding with the London Design Festival and constituted AACDD’s second successful year. It was the latest project launched by the British European Design Group’s (BEDG) three-year initiative, which is playing an increasingly important role in diversifying London’s creative community.

The festival director, Karin Phillips, Design Director Clemens Hackl, and Nigerian-born designer and curator, Emamoke Ukeleghe, orchestrated this production. The artists represented included roughly 100 graphic designers, multimedia artists, illustrators, industrial and product designers, and visual artists of African and African-Caribbean descent working in the U.K., Africa, the Caribbean, Japan and the United States. Hackl explained, “These artists and designers made a huge impact on visitors with their innovative works.” And thanks to funding from the London Arts Council, this year the AACDD Festival reached more people through a well-designed festival guide, website and social media platforms.

AACDD’s festival took place in three main locations: BargeHouse in OXO Towers in SouthBack, Hospital Club, and the Re-Loved Lounge at 100% Design. With 1,333 square feet of raw warehouse space, the BargeHouse served as the perfect blank canvas setting for browsing art lovers. It featured four floors of curated work by fine artists, illustrators, graphic designers, fashion designers, multimedia artists, and photographers. On one floor, Below the Surface, a photographic project by young black teenagers from London’s African and African-Caribbean communities, was a whopping success. The teenagers documented the colorful facets of everyday life, and produced an eye grabbing collection shot with disposable cameras given away through AACDD’s tweets and Facebook postings. For more click here>>

 

 



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17

01 2012

Ice Cube Hanging with Designers Charles and Ray Eames

I’m hooked on this: Actor/rapper Ice Cube steps into the world of industrial design, posing in a series of advertisements highlighting the innovative chair designs of mid-century design luminaries Charles and Ray Eames, for the Collecting Eames Collection. Held at the Pacific Time Standard, this event began this October to celebrate the Los Angeles art and design scene’s groundbreaking years between 1945 and 1990.

Besides the series of colorful ads, check the video of Ice Cube talking about the Eames House. You’ll be surprised to learn that Cube at one point tried his hand at architectural drafting while in trade school back in the 1980s.

In the video below, Cube says: “In a world of McMansions—where structures take up all the land—the Eameses made structure and nature one.” He strolls around the grounds of Eames House, rapping about how they were doing mash-ups before mash-ups even existed. Check out the L.A. Ice Cube knows and Loves!


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14

12 2011

SPARE BEATS: Happenings Near You

My several pairs of Havaianas, from my travels to Brazil are like gold. And much like everyone else walking around in colorful Havaianas flip flops, I love mine to death. This year’s opening at Art Basel Miami 01 December, will be jamming with artistically styled Brazilian flip-flops brand recently commissioned street artist Finok to create some eye popping murals. Check out some funky graffiti art from the streets in Sao Paulo to Collins Avenue in South Beach at the swanky Shelbourne Hotel. And while your perusing buy a pair limited edition graffiti collection designed by the Brazilian artist Finok, Chivitz and Minhau for $28.00, it’s probably one of the few affordable art pieces at Art Basel.

New African Fashion Book talk @ NYPL: On Wednesday 30 November, Helen Jennings hosts a talk at the New York Public Library as part of its Design & Style book series. She’ll be joined by designers Mataano and Mimi Plange, model campaigner Bethann Hardison and Enyinne Owunwanne of Heritage1960, who will MC the round table discussion. It’s a public event, first come, first served.

The following evening the real fun begins for those lucky souls who snagged a spot at the invite-only NYC launch party for New African Fashion at private members club Parlour. There will be a guest performance by Philly artist Zakee and sounds courtesy of DJ mOma and DJake. Enyinne will preview some of the designers and market finds shortly to be for sale on her beautifully curated site Heritage1960. And there will, of course, be free booze. It promises to be quite a shindig.
Occupy WallStreet Group: Arts and Culture segment of the OCW group looking to open art studio space, until such time they find permanent space chekout OCW’s art installation on Printer Matters Window.

SUPERSCRIPT’s SECOND ART AND ARCHITECTURE BOOK READING: On December 7, join Superscript and MoMA’s senior curator of architecture and design Paola Antonelli as we delve into the world of Philip K. Dick’s classic text, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Most famously the basis for the 1982 film Blade Runner (and the vast majority of science fiction imagery from the last thirty years), this 1968 novel popularized the idea of the cyborg and has had a lasting effect on dreams and fears concerning technology in the public sphere. Guest: Paola Antonelli; Text: Philip K Dick, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Venue: 15 Union Square West; Date: Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Time: 7pm Introduction; 7:15-8:15pm Discussion, Q&A

 

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30

11 2011

IRAAA Special Issue Merges Science, Technology, Art + Design

The International Review of African American Art just published a special issue which shows how aesthetic, scientific and mathematical configurations can be perceived in everything and experienced in many ways. This full seeing and being is a spark for innovation in art, science, technology, engineering, architecture and mathematics and, more broadly, in education and business… and life!

This Spring issue features a spectacular group of design and cultural critics, and theorist writing on science, Afro Futurism, STEM Education and the Interplay of Patterns are just a few of the amazing features highlighted in this issue. Pick up a copy and delve into creative intelligence!

 

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STEM Education from Life

 

Article from IRAAA Special Issue on Science, Technology and Art
By Michele Y. Washington

A dynamic husband-and-wife team is creating innovative, technology-based projects that merge design, art, computing, and social justice. Both work at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York. Ron Eglash is a professor in the Department of Science and Technology Studies, and Audrey Bennett is an associate professor in the Department of Language, Literature and Communication.

Audrey Bennett’s efforts span scholarly research (in communication design theory); social activism (in participatory design that involves users in the design process); professional design for clients; and creative, graphic arts that reflects her Dartmouth College studio art background. She has an M.F.A. in graphic design from Yale University. Her work in participatory design led to a book, Design Studies: Theory and Research in Graphic Design (Princeton Architectural Press), and the development of GLIDE: Global Interaction in Design, a biennial, virtual forum and research hub on our ever-changing world of design and technology.

The October 2010 virtual conference brought together a distinguished group of design educators, graduate students and researchers from across the globe in real time communication. Covering a broad range, the topics included the use of design solutions to help the indigenous, marginalized people of southern Mexico build business capacity; green design concepts in Asia; and the use of digital technologies in teaching and research in Pacific communities.

During the GLIDE 10, keynote presentation, Ron Eglash discussed his research on the vernacular knowledge systems of global, indigenous cultures and the need to dispel myths about these groups as being backwards, “primitive,” illiterate. He also discussed his world with African American, Puerto Rican and Native American cultures in the United States. In applying these systems for use in design and education. Eglash cautioned that sensitivity is required to make sure that these users are beneficial to the people who created them.
Read the rest of this entry →

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The Afro Talks Back

Present Tense: The 2011 D-Crit Conference: Michele Washington, Untangling the Naps: The Afro Talks Back from D-Crit on Vimeo.

“Untangling the Naps” investigates the cultural and historical significance of the Afro, and how the afro is expressed today. I explore images of the Afro/’fro/Natural and how they were used to define blackness, racial pride, and ultimately, the black design aesthetic.

The themes for this work focus on identity, hair, blackness and power, ideas expressed in the statement by Robin D. G. Kelley, Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity at USC College.

“No matter what we might think about culture and style as a terrain of struggle, hairstyle politics, particularly in the Black community, reveal a great deal about power—the power of white over black, men over women, employer over workers, state over citizens.” — By Robin D. G. Kelley, Nap Time: Historicizing the Afro

 

My field of enquiry is based on my long-term research into the black aesthetic influence on graphic design in the twentieth century. The title, “Untangling the Naps,” suggests how I have used the Afro as a graphic narrative, in the next phase of my quest to understand the black aesthetic. In my research I investigate the historical and cultural significance of the Afro in the past, and in its current expressions. I have also researched the struggles that describe the “politics of style,” and explore the images and signifiers of the Afro/’fro/Natural that are used to define blackness, racial pride, and the new black design aesthetic of hip. My objective is to illustrate the ways this natural hairstyle has been used as a significant graphic element in the black vernacular narrative and in social media to brand black hipness.

 

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OpenInvo Wants YOUR Ideas

Fellow SVA Alumni Emily Lutzker has launched OPENINVO an innovative  online community for businesses that bridges people from the arts and creative fields with corporations.


If you have a brilliant idea for a new product or service, then join as an Idea Provider. We then present your ideas to corporations looking to innovate. The system protects your intellectual property along the way and we make it our job to get you the best compensation for your ideas. OpenInvo is an R&D resource for open innovation where individuals submit ideas for new products and services and companies gain access to those ideas for innovative new solutions

For more information link to: OpenInvo: unexpected innovation. unexpected opportunity. openinvo.com

 

 




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15

04 2011


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