From The New York Times to Esquire, from Cannes to the Venice Biennale — Art Center alums have been busy making, making headlines and making their talents known within some of the world’s most prestigious events, platforms and publications. In addition to this primer on their accomplishments, we’re also inviting the Art Center alumni community to nominate candidates for this year’s Art Center Alumni Awards. Read on to learn more.
Archive for the ‘Transportation Design’ Category
“Mmm, pan dulce,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. Around the Green Room table behind the Los Angeles City Council Chambers, diverse leaders gathered around cafecito and conchas de vainilla o chocolate. It was 8:30 a.m. on a cool Saturday morning. Our disciplines ranged from transportation and interactive design to Smart Grid technologies, and from electric vehicle infrastructure and urban planning to community economic development.
We came together at the invitation of Mayor Eric Garcetti and Peter Marx (Chief Innovation and Technology Officer) to galvanize the technology track of #techLA– the city’s inaugural Technology and Innovation Conference held in City Hall.
Tasked by Marx with facilitating a panel on the future of mobility, I seized the opportunity to spark an interdisciplinary conversation on the topic. Representing Art Center with me were two respected innovators: Geoff Wardle (Executive Director of the Graduate Transportation Design program) and Maggie Hendrie (Chair of the Interaction Design undergraduate program). Later that day, Art Center Graduate Transportation student, Retro Poblano, also presented his research on automated shuttles to the public.
Nearly every current student and graduate passing through Art Center’s doors has encountered the mentorship and teaching of Stan Kong. While that may be a slight exaggeration, Stan (his chosen moniker over ‘Mr. Kong’) has been responsible for shepherding more students to Art Center than any other. He is a living embodiment of Art Center as both an alumnus (BS 83 Product) and long-time faculty member. Wednesday night over 150 alumni, parents and children of former students, current students, friends and past and present colleagues came together with raised glasses and warm embraces to celebrate Stan’s lasting impact on the institution. The reception included attendees both young and old, as well as legendary (Syd Mead, BS 59 Transportation) and influential (Pasadena Mayor Bill Bogaard). The student dining room filled with laughter, shouts of, ‘I love you Stan,’ and even a few tear-filled moments. Speeches were given, which included an announcement from Provost Fred Fehlau (MFA 88 Art) awarding Stan the well deserved title of Adjunct Professor.
“Right across the Arroyo, we’re making plans for a real close encounter,” says Dave Doody, whose Art Center At Night seminar, “Basics of Interplanetary Flight,” is currently recruiting participants for a class that’s literally out of this world. “My team has been piloting the gangly robot Cassini in wide orbits around Saturn since 2010. But in coming years we’re going to drop in for some up-close-and-personal visits. We’ll plunge the spacecraft between the rings and the planet 22 times before letting go of the spent machine so it can burn up in the gas giant’s atmosphere like a meteor.”
This 2016-2017 segment of Cassini’s 20 year mission has been temporarily dubbed the “Proximal Orbits” by mission planners at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where Doody works as a senior engineer, currently leading the Saturn-bound spacecraft’s flight operations controllers. But after acknowledging that some creative person somewhere could almost certainly conjure a more mission-worthy name, NASA launched the Cassini Name Game, hoping for some better ideas.
“One thing about these orbits will be their huge roller coaster speed,” says Doody. “The camera-laden craft will reach more than 120,000 kilometers an hour as it screams past the innermost ring particles just above the hazy atmosphere. Next, it’ll slow down for three and a quarter days, coasting ‘up’ to the top of its 1.2 million kilometer-high peak, before starting to drop back in again for its next pass. Wild.”
Art Center students, faculty, staff and alumni have been making news while making their mark at on the art and design worlds. For those who may have missed a headline or two, we curated this handy highlight reel of our recent media clips:
Don’t miss two lengthy, live interview segments we arranged for Interaction Design Chair, Maggie Hendrie and ACCD student Alex Cabunoc on the new cable program TakePart Live—a show tailored to Millennials (age 18-34) that reaches 40 million-plus households through Participant Media’s Pivot TV network. (Participant Media is the award-winning, socially and politically progressive production company responsible for An Inconvenient Truth, The Cove, Lincoln, among other enlightening and edifying films and TV shows).
Shortly after the Spring 2014 term passed its halfway point, our participating students (Myspacers?) produced a new set of videos tracking their progress on the path toward creative completion.
Starting a project is never easy. And finishing it is, arguably, even harder. But let’s not underestimate the challenges involved in persisting through the obstacle course of roadblocks artists often face once they’re deep enough into a project that starting over isn’t an option, and the finish line isn’t yet in sight.
Before James Dyson first mesmerized TV viewers with his early demonstrations of his sleekly designed and innovatively engineered vacuum cleaner, capable of coaxing the dirt from off any surface, home cleaning devices were many things but sexy wasn’t one of them. But after Dyson’s invention captured the popular imagination (not to mention a landfill’s worth of grit and grime) and became the industry standard for home suction, consumers’ perceptions (and expectations) of vacuums were forever altered, in terms of both performance and prettiness.
Though such paradigm shifting innovations are dependent upon a mysterious combination of luck, timing, research and inspiration. The Dyson company has continued to expand upon its success by upholding its high standards for innovative design and engineering. Cultivating the next generation of design innovators is another vital part of the company’s forward-thinking ethos. To that end, the James Dyson Foundation has been rewarding ground-breaking feats of creative engineering with the James Dyson Award, created in 2002, which offers a $45,000 prize to a design that “solves a problem.”
The foundation has recently started seeding the field by conducting design engineering workshops with K-12 students in Chicago. Last week that strategy graduated to the college level, when a team of Dyson engineers lead Art Center students from three departments — Transportation, Product Design and Graduate Industrial Design — in an exercise testing their teamwork, problem-solving, creativity and craftsmanship.
Not every act of philanthropy to Art Center involves writing a check. It should come as no surprise that friends and alumni of this artistic mecca are naturally predisposed to get creative with their giving. Sometimes gifts come in the form of goods and services. Computer software, fonts and even lighting are some of the in-kind commitments made to the College that are powerfully shaping the Art Center experience.
A recent sizeable gift of 3D design software and training services from Autodesk is providing Art Center students with hands-on experience using the same technology preferred by professionals in industry. The software is currently installed on Art Center’s 500 Macintosh and Windows personal computers and accessible to all undergraduate and graduate students. The donation benefits designers in every program, particularly those in the departments of Environmental Design, Film, Product Design and Transportation Design.
This Saturday, following years of all-nighters, critiques, finals, internships and hopefully some fun, 153 Art Center students will graduate. As that day approaches, we take time to celebrate these creative and talented individuals who are about to take on the world and, as is custom at our Fall Graduation, we also honor alumni who have already paved the way. Here’s the lowdown for the week.
Thursday, December 12: Graduation Show Preview
Industry leaders, employers, corporate partners, donors and alumni get the first look at the Fall term’s graduating artists and designers at the invitation-only Graduation Show Preview. This event, hosted by Alumni Relations to welcome new graduates into the community, gives our graduating students an opportunity to network with potential employers and fellow alumni. The show features student projects from major fields of study at Art Center, including Advertising, Entertainment Design, Environmental Design, Film, Graphic Design, Illustration, Photography and Imaging, Product Design, Transportation Design, Graduate Film and Graduate Industrial Design.
Graduation Show Preview will be held at Hillside Campus from 6 to 9:30 p.m., with a private reception immediately following.
Friday, December 13: MDP Work-In-Progress Show
Media Design Practices is holding a work-in-progress show from 6 to 10 p.m. in the Wind Tunnel Gallery at South Campus (950 South Raymond). The MDP/Lab track will be presenting thesis work in progress from their Ciphertexts & Cryptoblob inquiry and the MDP/Field track with be featuring projects from Kampala, Uganda.
Saturday December 14: Graduation
Join us in the Sculpture Garden at Hillside Campus from 4 to 6 p.m. for our graduation ceremony. At the ceremony, we will honor three of our alumni who will be presented with Alumni Awards. This year, all the awardees received degrees in Product Design. Gordon Bruce will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award, Stan Kong will receive the award for Outstanding Achievement and Spencer Nikosey will receive the Young Alumni Innovator Award.