Welcome to Design | History | Revolution

Whether by providing agitprop for revolutionary movements, an aesthetics of empire, or a language for numerous avant-gardes, design has changed the world. But how? Why? And under what conditions?  This course proposes a consideration of design as an historical agent, a contested category, and a practice.

Casting a wide net, the course will consider a range of geographical locations (“West,” “East,” “North,” South,” and contact zones between these constructed categories).  We will examine not only designed objects (e.g., industrial design, decorative arts, graphic design, fashion) but also spaces (e.g., architecture, interiors, landscapes, urban settings) and systems (e.g., environment, economy, communications, services, governments). Together we will ask: What is design? How does it relate to society, history and politics? Students will get to engage with how histories of the past inform our contemporary media saturated lives, and experiment with new ways to do history through use of digital media, visual materials, and aesthetic practices.

This is also an experimental studio-research course. We will be taking many field trips, and you will work together, in groups, to create alternative fictions, designs, and interventions within the contemporary environment. walkingcity2.jpg






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