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Core77 Rss Feed

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    A lot happening at the Cooper-Hewitt these days, with the big conference coming up tomorrow (Core77 will be live streaming it all day here) and the Triennial humming along. The second in the series of Bill's Talks is coming up next week, featuring one of the wisest, most beloved design writers and thinkers of all time, Ralph Caplan. (Winner of this year's National Design Award for Design Mind.) Core77 was proud to do a "double feature" on the reissue of Ralph's seminal book, By Design several years ago, but next week is your chance to see Ralph live. Here's from the release:

    BILL'S DESIGN TALKS

    A new series of design conversations with Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Director Bill Moggridge

    Design Trajectory with Ralph Caplan

    Thursday, October 7, 2010, 6:30 - 8:00pm

    The design process has moved from just forming objects to addressing the situations in which objects are used. That's a major theme in Ralph Caplan's seminal book By Design, expressed in the book's subtitle: "Why There Are No Locks on the Bathroom Doors of the Hotel Louis IV and Other Object Lessons." This year Ralph Caplan is honored with the National Design Mind Award for his contributions to design research and scholarship.

    Caplan will offer his take on the Cooper-Hewitt's role in shaping the understanding and presentation of design from its opening exhibition in 1976, Man TRANSforms, to the current exhibition Why Design Now? His presentation will be followed by a discussion with Cooper-Hewitt Director Bill Moggridge.

    Galleries open from 5:30 - 6:30pm before the program.

    $15 / $10 members, students and seniors.

    Register online HERE

    See you there!

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    This October, the Tribeca Cinema in New York will be hosting the first ever Architecture & Design Film Festival in the US. For four days, nearly forty films have been selected for this design-packed event bringing together filmmakers and leaders in the world of architecture and design.

    A wide variety of films will be screened during the four days, as Kyle Bergman, architect and festival co-director explains:

    They cover an incredible range of design-oriented topics, from architecture and urban design to graphics and product design. As we like to say, 'Design Directs Everything.' We've got films on pioneers in architecture and design from the middle of the last century, including graphic designer Herbert Matter, an almost forgotten genius; Lucienne and Robin Day, often called the Charles and Ray Eames of Britain; and Julius Shulman, the renowned architectural photographer. Then we take audiences to the present with films like Studio Gang Architects: Aqua Tower, about an amazing Chicago firm founded in 1997 by architect Jeanne Gang.
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    Bejing Design Week Logo designed by Michael Rock and Xin Jing of 2x4.

    In case you haven't heard, this time next year, Beijing will be bursting at the seams with design events of every kind at the inaugural Bejing Design Week, a 6-day event heralding China's burgeoning design scene and signaling a desire to bring an international design audience to one of its liveliest cities. Aric Chen, journalist, design critic, and recent transplant from New York to Beijng, serves as BJDW's Creative Director, building on his experience co-directing 100% Design Shanghai with the late Tobias Wong in 2008 and 2009.

    Though the event is still a year away, the Beijing Design Week committee has already done loads: bringing in design firm 2x4 to design the event's identity (above), hosting a preview event during London Design Festival, inviting London to bring some of its cutting-edge design content to Beijing for the event, and arranging for a large-scale installation in Tiananmen Square, to be unveiled on October 1st, 2011, the anniversary of the founding of the PRC.

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    Top: A piece by Jessica Turrell, contributor to Craft Research Journal. Photo credit CAA. Bottom: Rebecca Reubens writes about the impact of bamboo craft industry in India. Photo credit Indigo Design Network

    A new journal entitled Craft Research is released this month with an aim to promote the emerging area of craft research within the disciplines of applied arts, crafts and craft education. The journal is dedicated to presenting and reporting on research, in the widest sense, in order to advance the knowledge in the field. It will contain a number of peer-reviewed articles that encompass research developments into materials, processes, methods, concepts, aesthetic and style. The Craft Research journal intends to portray and build the crafts as a vital and viable modern discipline that has a vision for the future.

    To celebrate the release of the first issue, three articles from the first issue are available to download for FREE from the Intellect website. Other articles in the first issue include research into pewter by Trish Woods, enameled jewellery by Jessica Turrell and bamboo use in India by Coroflot member Rebecca Reubens

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    Study O Portable curate and contribute to an exhibition of works exploring the role of voids in objects, aptly titled Objects with a Void.. Six designers responded to the brief, 'Intentional or coincidental, voids in objects have the power to define the function and aesthetics of the objects. It's a dismissed yet integral part of design that captivates our imagination.'

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    It's one design week after another these days, with London and Valencia just wrapping up and Vienna's 10-day program starting tomorrow. If you're there, don't miss it (though there are so many things going on, you'd have to be a complete recluse to avoid it). If you're not there, not to worry—we've sent Core77 correspondent Jessica Charlesworth to send us the best.

    Check out the full program here, and stay tuned at www.core77.com/vienna!

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    Design Marketo Opening Night.

    Jérôme Rigaud and Alex Bettler once again curated a collection of self produced objects inspired by food, but this time its coffee. The event is part of the Food Marketo series (a collaboration between the online shop Design Marketo and Apartmento Magazine) and follows on from a similar show in Milan earlier this year, entitled Fruit & Vegetables Vs. Designers.

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    Coffee & Friends by Amandine Alessandra is a plain white bistro tablecloth that reveals its pattern as coffee or tea is spilled on it: designed after the circle stains left by coffee cups, hundred of tiny smiling round faces appear on the fabric, sympathising with the clumsy guest.

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    VisionSpring helps local entrepreneurs start their own businesses by providing them with a "Business in a Bag." Each kit contains the necessary tools that enable an entrepreneur to market and sell eyeglasses. As "Vision Entrepreneurs" they are taught to "conduct eye care marketing and awareness-generating campaigns, host one-day "vision campaigns" in underserved villages, sell a selection of affordable, high-quality, stylish, VisionSpring-branded eyeglasses and refer those in need of advanced eye care to partner clinics."

    In light of this great work, you can see why we're excited that Canada's high end department store, Holt Renfrew, has launched a limited edition Marc bag (complete with the notable eye chart graphic) to support VisionSpring's efforts.

    The Marc comes in pink, blue, white and black and is available at Holt Renfrew from September 30 until October 10, 2010 while supplies last.

    (Image via VisionSpring)

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    Hear Ye! Hear Ye!
    Core77's Hand-Eye Supply Curiosity Club is pleased to announce our first speaker, Mark Tieszen, who has spent 7 years as a professional Telemark skier. Mark's transition from athlete to designer gives him a unique perspective on the relationship between the designer and user in the process of developing athletic equipment. As a professional skier and consultant, Mark worked extensively with Crispi, an Italian company on the forefront of Telemark Ski manufacturing and design. The talk will focus on his experience working on the NTN Telemark boot and binding and the struggles of innovating in a field that is entrenched in heritage and tradition.

    Tuesday, October 5, 2010
    5:30 to 6:30 pm

    23 NW 4th Ave
    Portland, Ore.
    503.575.9769

    Reserve your seat by RSVPing to:
    curiosityclub@handeyesupply.com

    Not in Portland? Tune in LIVE on our website
    October 5th, 5:30 to 6:30 pm PST (GMT+8)

    Read on for some more info about the Club and upcoming speakers...

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    The London Design Festival went out with a bang at the V&A Museums's Two's A Pair Event earlier this week, closing down a massive program of hundreds of events, from the mainstream to totally fringe. Core77 Correspondent Shai Akram blitzed the shows for us, capturing the best in her just-posted photo gallery. There are so many highlights, but a few of our favorites: Hel Yes!, a temporary restaurant celebrating Finnish Design, The Visitor, a show put together by Okay Studio and Friends, Yuri Suziki's sound devices, and Design Against the Clock, Established & Sons real time design studio.

    >> view gallery

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  • 10/01/10--06:19: Tanya Clarke's Liquid Lights
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    California-based designer Tanya Clarke is the daughter of environmental activist Tony Clarke, the author of Blue Gold: The Fight to Stop the Corporate Theft of the World's Water. Tanya's own contribution to water awareness is Liquid Light - Industrial Light Installations, a series of custom-built fixtures that "create a visual reminder fo the precious commodity that water is and our need to protect this natural resource." They're made from recycled plumbing and hardware and illuminated with LEDs, and a portion of their sales goes towards global water education, action and justice issues.

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    Several blogs have published shots of Argentina-based Marcos Madia's Bikoff concept, a shortlisted finalist in the Seoul Cycle Design competition as shown on Design Boom. However, there seems to be some confusion, as some other blogs are mistakenly claiming the bicycle is intended to fold into the briefcase itself. That's neither accurate nor is it the point of the bike. As Madia explains [italics ours],

    'Bikoff' is a small foldeable bike which features a briefcase incorporated into the frame. there is an intimate relationship between the briefcase and the frame. the briefcase completes the frame, giving it great structure.

    ...This project was aimed at those who do not use bicycles, those who drive their cars every morning to the office. 'Bikoff' was born to convince these people to leave their cars and to ride every morning to their offices.

    You can check out the rest of Madia's book on Coroflot.

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    The Design Museum Boston final brand identity is here! This project was all about designing communication to a broad, very differentiated, audience: to designers and the general public.

    The logotype communicates to a broad audience with purely typographic form. It is direct yet casual. Bold in its own right, but also very approachable and understandable. The bug represents the unique nature of the Design Museum Boston organization, and its approach to design education. The combination of the logotype and bug allows for clear legibility and leverages the bug for brand recognition and to build equity. We're going to continue to work with Design Museum Boston to fill out the system -- colors, logo variations, extensions, and so on.

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    Late Fridays at the V&A are always surprising and enjoyable—this month's event focused on designers who work in pairs. The evening was full of activities that explored interaction, two-ness and unexpected collaborations.

    Two to Tango featured oversized spoons where visitors were encouraged to feed each other from giant pots of couscous, while a 'V&A' version of the memory game, Two's a Pair, took place in the dining hall, with prizes of specially commissioned artworks.

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    Florida-based designer and engineer Salim Nasser knows how difficult wheelchair ergonomics are. How? "Personal experience, since I am in a wheelchair myself," he writes in his project brief for this year's Create the Future design competition. His entry, which won Grand Prize, was to "make manual wheelchair propulsion more efficient while reducing stresses to shoulder and arm muscles."

    Nasser's experience and research indicated that traditional wheelchair locomotion, in which the user pushes on wheels connected to the main wheels, is biomechanically inefficient, uses the weaker muscles groups in the arm, and causes a high percentage of tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome among the wheelchair-using populace.

    His solution is the Rowheel, special wheels that convert a rowing motion into forward energy for the main wheels; this forward energy takes advantage of the arms' naturally stronger muscles, which Nasser further amplifies by using gear ratios to provide mechanical advantage. And most importantly, Rowheels were designed to be retrofitted to existing wheelchairs. Check out the details here.

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    Tomorrow, Design Harvest, a new annual street festival celebrating design, begins in Chicago, rain or shine. The free event runs from 11am-7pm, bringing collectors, vendors, consumers and retailers together around design for domestic space.

    The West Town Chamber of Commerce along with Post 27 are proud to present Design Harvest, a new annual street festival for Chicago. This one of a kind fest will feature Chicago's best local furniture and home accessory makers, vintage and antique collectors, and local retailers of the home design industry. Renegade Handmade will present a "DIY" tent previewing their best in the home design industry. Enjoy our sponsoring beer brand, french wines by Lulu B, music provided by The Hide Out Inn, and locally roasted coffee by Intelligensia.

    We're not sure what to expect from this inaugural design street festival, but there's no better excuse to get out of the house, enjoy the fall weather (yes, rain or shine), and meet some of the local design community.

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    Aluminum foam is neat stuff, made by melting the metal down and adding a bubbling agent while it's in liquid form. The resultant material looks like a sponge, is up to 95% air, is fireproof, sound-dampening, reflective, and can absorb a high amount of impact force. The military is incorporating aluminum foam in Humvees (click on "Blast Mitigation" at link) to absorb IED blasts, and Frank Gehry's making a building complex out of the stuff. The informative (but occasionally silly) nine-minute video below takes a closer look at the material and how it's made:


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    What a fantastic day of design discourse and discussion! Special thanks to GE and Smithsonian, Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum for providing us the video feed, and thanks to all of you who watched and participated in the discussions online. Check back here in coming days for any additional coverage, and search Twitter for #designnow an archive and continuation of today's tweets.

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    Jens Martin Skibsted, creative director of Danish bicycle company Biomega and partner of supergroup Kibisi, alongside Bjarke Ingels and Lars Holme Larsen, is a big name in urban bicycle design, but did you know that space ships and zeppelins are also on the docket? Or that he started off writing science fiction monster movies? Sight Unseen just posted an entertaining and insightful interview with Skibsted; he picks a few of his favorite things, points out major influences, and shows some early designs, including the Copenhagen and PUMA models pictured above.

    Take it all in here.

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