Posts Tagged ‘art center’

Designmatters at Sustainable Summer School – Part 1

Tuesday, October 6th, 2015


In the first of Designmatters‘ three part Sustainable Summer School blog series, Product Design student and head of the ArtCenter EcoCouncil, Arotin Hartounian reflects on his time spent at the 7th annual summer school program in Western Germany.

authorphotoAt a 17th century monastery situated in a rural area of Western Germany, 28 students gathered for the 7th annual Sustainable Summer School. The summer school program is organized by a collaboration of the Ecosign Academy, Folkwang University of the Arts, and The Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment, and Energy. The Designmatters Department at ArtCenter in partnership with the Provost’s office generously sponsored three students to attend this program. Most of the students were from Germany with one student each from Italy, Spain, and Austria. Janya, Daniel and I were the only students from the USA. Over the course of 7 days we lived and studied at the monastery with all the students and teachers. The students were divided into three workshops, each focusing on different ways design can initiate and support sustainable behavior in our daily life. (more…)

From Beirut to outer space: TEDxACCD shows big things start small

Friday, October 2nd, 2015
The crowd outside the Ahmanson Theater.

The crowd outside the Ahmanson Theater.

ArtCenter College of Design has red balloons on its roof, Hot Wheels are being handed out at the entrance and throngs of students eagerly wait in the hallway. This is not a child’s birthday party; it’s ArtCenter’s TEDxACCD – a unique event where alumni and faculty speak to students and guests about their specialties.  For over 25 years, TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) has provided a platform for some of the most cutting edge conversations of the day. As a world-class art and design school committed to learning to create and influence change, TED offers a natural compliment to our goals. (more…)

Extra! Extra! May-June Art Center alumni notes are hot off the press

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015
Laura Leiman's RAAC project

Laura Leiman’s RAAC project

Here’s your early summer bounty of Art Center alumni notes, news and happenings, best enjoyed with a cool beverage, under a shady tree on a breezy afternoon.


Art Center students pave the road into the future of autonomous cars

Friday, June 19th, 2015
First cars to travel The Arroyo Seco Parkway in 1940. Photo (detail): Los Angeles Public Library

First cars to travel The Arroyo Seco Parkway in 1940. Photo (detail): Los Angeles Public Library

In On the Road, Jack Kerouac wrote, “What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing? – it’s the too-huge world vaulting us, and it’s good-bye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”

But what does it mean when that “next crazy venture” is fueled by a set of algorithms?

As we’ve previously reported, the arrival of autonomous cars could very well usher in a new era of safer roads. But might the public be hesitant to hand over the keys of their vehicle–often seen as a bedrock American symbol of freedom–to Apple, Google or Uber?

“The promise of the automobile 100 years ago was being able to go anywhere, anytime,” says alumnus Stewart Reed (69), chair of Art Center’s transportation design programs. “This idea freed people from structuring their lives around stagecoach or train schedules and opened up a world of new experiences.”

What wasn’t the promise 100 years ago? Moving 11,700 vehicles an hour at peak times through the Sepulveda Pass. (more…)

Andrea Santizo: Pulling the Strand on view

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

PortraitThis Friday, April 10th, from 7pm – 9pm, an opening reception will be held for Andrea Santizo’s senior show, Pulling the Strand.

The work ranges in scale and media, from large wooden and wool wall pieces that encompass the viewer, to small copper and salt sculptures that could fit in a child’s hand. Her hybrid objects blend artistic and craft traditions with personal and art historical references. The result is a generous and inviting array of objects that want to shift when you grasp at them but linger in your mind long after the encounter.

In her own words:

As far back as I can remember, there has been a clash between my cultural background and the transplanted American culture in which I was raised. I find myself pushing together what is considered valuable art histories of: frames, prescribed minimalist shapes, drawing and painting, up to traditional textile, fiber, and domestic objects that lack validity within the same art worlds structure in which the formerly mentioned genres reside. In order to form a dynamic exhibition that allows for a critical viewing of such histories, traditions, and acceptable forms of high art, and in doing so directly confronting the polarized art histories and blatant appropriation of traditionally “female” shapes and practices, and questioning the exclusion of craft into the realm of “fine art.”


Love designed to last: Alum couples share the secret sauce to relationship bliss

Thursday, February 12th, 2015
Alumni Wakako Takagi (BS 06) and Fridolin “Frido” Beisert (MS 08) say "If you can make it through Art Center together as a couple you are pretty much bonded for the rest of your life." Photo by Max Wanger.

Alumni Wakako Takagi (BS 06) and Fridolin “Frido” Beisert (MS 08) say “If you can make it through Art Center together as a couple you are pretty much bonded for the rest of your life.” Photo by Max Wanger.

Art Center’s reputation as a creative proving ground doesn’t exactly evoke images of artistic ardor, sunset strolls or even longing looks among the library stacks. But, as the saying goes: love is stronger than hate, war…or, in this case, work-weary creative determination. In fact, you might be surprised to learn that Art Center’s bridge has also served a figurative function, fostering deep and durable connections among more than a few alumni who have tied the knot. 

So, in honor of Valentine’s Day, we’re taking a closer look at the elements unique to couples who survived three years of Art Center’s intense maker bootcamp of high-standards and brutal crits and successfully applied the iterative process to love.


Art Center in Asia: It Began in Japan

Friday, November 21st, 2014
Product Design alumnus Kenji Ekuan (BS 57), second from right, arrives in the United States in the 1950s.

Product Design alumnus Kenji Ekuan (BS 57), second from right, arrives in the United States in the 1950s.

In the latest issue of Dot magazine, we take a look at Art Center College of Design’s long history—nearly 60 years—of connections to Asia. Take a trip with us through time and across the Pacific as we look back in history and forward to the future. Today, we explore the College’s historic relationship with Japan.

In 1956, Edward A. “Tink” Adams, Art Center’s first president, traveled to Japan with Advertising alumnus George Jergenson (BFA 35)—then the director of the College’s Industrial Design (ID) Department—and ID faculty member John Coleman. They had been invited by the Japanese government to tour the country and to share their thoughts on how industrial design could provide a competitive advantage for a nation still early in its post-war recovery.

After returning to the U.S., they filed a formal report containing several recommendations for Japan, including instilling a sense of national pride in products being “Made in Japan”—they cited Nikon’s confidence in placing its name on its camera, “one of the finest cameras anywhere”—and making sure Japanese students fully grasp their country’s rich cultural history. The future designer, it stated, “will learn more…from studying Japanese masters of painting and design than he will from Western art.”


A young Art Center film student finds her tribe at Sundance 2014

Monday, February 10th, 2014
Second term Film student, Laura Holliday (left) poses at Sundance with her high school mentor, Betty Bailey

Second term Film student, Laura Holliday (right) poses at Sundance with her high school mentor, Betty Bailey

I always assumed I had no business attending large prestigious film festivals until I had a movie showing there. So, as an undergraduate film student in only my second term at Art Center, I figured it would be a long time before I ended up at one of them. However, after getting the opportunity to attend the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, I can say confidently that any film student or movie lover has a place there, and can benefit boundlessly from being immersed in a scene ripe with creative energy and opportunities to connect.


Conscious Commuter mobilizes an e-bike revolution at The Design Accelerator

Friday, August 2nd, 2013
Gabriel Wartofsky with his electric bike at the Environmental Media Awards

Gabriel Wartofsky with his electric bike at the Environmental Media Awards.

When entrepreneurial inspiration strikes, it’s often described as the convergence of creative and commercial instincts. An innovator perceives a void in the marketplace and conceives a product or experience to fill that space and drive demand for more. But for Gabriel Wartofsky and Bob Vander Woude, that well-worn path into the startup trenches has been less clear-cut.

The partners have spent the past two years developing Conscious Commuter, a company built around an electric bicycle with a sleek design and long-range battery. However the whole enterprise is driven by nothing short of a mission to revolutionize transportation.“We’re solution providers,” declares Vander Woude, an entrepreneur and CEO of a seed-stage investment fund, who was looking to fund an electric bike company when he happened upon a web demo of Wartofsky’s senior thesis project, now the basis for their partnership, which aims to implement e-bike sharing systems in cities around the world. “We’re multi-modal. That’s the secret sauce. Other electric bike companies are not coming from the background of solving a social problem. They’re just motivated to get to a retailer and make money.”


Sold-out conference features Art Center faculty, highlights vitality of photographic education

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013
Dennis Keeley

Photography and Imaging Chair Dennis Keeley to lead Industry and Education Forum at SPE conference

Teachers, critics, curators, gallery directors, image-makers, collectors and students convene in Chicago this week for the 50th National Conference of the Society for Photographic Education (SPE). With 1,600 registered attendees, the conference is completely sold out for the second year in a row.

Invited participants in the March 7–10, 2013 conference include Dennis Keeley, chair of Photography and Imaging at Art Center and board member of SPE, who will lead the Industry and Education Forum on Sat. March 9 at 9 a.m.; and featured speaker Mona Kuhn, Art Center faculty member, presenting her work on Friday, March 8 at 10 a.m.

This year’s conference theme, “Conferring Significance: Celebrating Photography’s Continuum,” examines how concentration on a subject has allowed image, concept, criticism, teaching and learning to shape the past, present and future of photography. (more…)