Belgian architecture studio BC Architects has designed the first building of a new school for deaf children in Burundi, Africa. The clay colored structure was built by the firm along with community members and features local materials including rammed earth walls and baked ceiling tiles. The design borrows from indigenous building typologies and serves as both a quiet educational space and gathering place for the community. Another take on a library, The Bookmobile Project travels the United States and Canada via a vintage airstream trailer that contains 300 books you can’t get at your local library including one-of-a-kind photocopied zines and small press publications.
Image via Dezeen
Bookshelf: Innovation Reading
Last week, Innovation Excellence released their suggested innovation readings for 2014, ranging from established classics to more recent releases. The book’s subjects focus on everything from “disruptive innovation”, unleashing creativity and the importance of collaboration in innovation. Suggested titles include Change By Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation by Tim Brown, The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christensen, Where Good Ideas Come From by Steven Johnson, and his TED talk of the same title.
Two upcoming exhibits take a closer look at the objects that populate our world. Museum of Design Atlanta (MODA) will present Hidden Heroes: The Genius of Everyday Things organized by the Vitra Design Museum. Opening on February 23, the show focuses its lens on the ordinary, often overlooked, objects that have become indispensable to our daily lives. The exhibit highlights four aspects of design: innovation, production, evolution, and inspiration. The Design Museum London has collaborated with renowned design duo Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby to capture the essence of objects through their display mid-manufacture. Some extravagant, others prosaic, the items including a cricket bat, coin, diamond, and banknote were all chosen due to the surprising form they take before completion. In the Making will be on display until May 4.
Image via MODA
Global & Local Innovation
Using data gathered from 2013, Cornell University, INSTEAD and WIPO recently released the Global Innovation Index. The full report is available online, with Switzerland holding the highest ranking and United States re-entering the top five this year. An article offering a cross-country perspective about the challenges between global and local innovation, discusses the vast differences between the needs of established and emerging markets, and the theory of “reverse innovation“. (image of Global Center for Health Innovation via Ted Eytan)
Shedding Light on Global Issues
To raise awareness of the daily challenges faced by 1.3 billion people without electricity, ‘Cut out the Darkness’ asks participants to design a lantern shade. 100 of these designs will be chosen, fabricated and delivered to non-electrified areas worldwide, as an alternative to CO2 kerosene lamps. Other socially-conscious case studies are featured on the Design for Good platform on the AIGA website, which is celebrating its 100 year anniversary this year.
This January, the London College of Communication is staging an exhibition of the acclaimed poster art of Tom Eckersley entitled Tom Eckersley: Master of the Poster. Eckersley was responsible for creating the school of graphic design at the London School of Printing (LSP) and the bold colors and clean lines found in his public information posters influenced the campaigns of organizations from Guinness to the United Nations. The show displays 40 posters made between 1940 and 1980, in addition to sketches and other materials created for the LSP. Catch the show before it closes January 29.
Bookshelf: What We’re Reading
Martí Guixé unites his design background and devotion to food in his new book Transition Menu – Reviewing Creative Gastronomy. His most recent work delves into the development of food design incorporating his personal thoughts on pleasurable vs. functional cuisine, regional food culture, and plate choices. His transition menu consists of 23 elements that “define the borders of gastronomy and food design.” Disregarding taste, smell, and texture, Guixé’s focus is squarely on the ritual of consumption.
This winter, London department store Selfridges has planned a series of installations, lectures, debates, and workshops for their Festival of Imagination. The store commissioned Rem Koolhaas to design the festival’s hub, a sleek contemporary amphitheater. Meanwhile, concept stores have been transformed into “imagine shops” and avant-garde fashion designer Gareth Pugh’s MONOLITH installation takes viewers on a scintillating journey into his visual world. The immersive experience envelopes the viewer in monochromatic cityscapes, stark geometry, and ethereal sounds. Through February 22.
Image via Dezeen