Design student inspiration party

August 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

There’s Pecha Kutcha. There’s conferences. There’s talks by well known designers. These are things offered in London for designers. However, they are not really aimed at students, who really should be at a point in their bud of a career to be asking questions – to be inspired to ask questions. We need guidance, from somewhere external to university. It has been so vital to me to go to exhibitions and meet designers and try to understand what these conferences are all about.

Students will not come to things you have to pay for, unless there is a free drink and their friends are going.

I propose a fortnightly design student party. Other students are welcome but it must be 70% design students. Students from different universities can meet each other and exchange ideas – with a focus on philosophies, manifestos, ethics.

Each event will have a different theme that is meant to raise questions rather than just provide answers. I want to provide a platform for debate rather than preach my own ideals.

Themes could include copyright, designing for other cultures, energy futures, what is sustainable design?… these could take inspiration from university curriculums, but students will suggest other things that interest them.

Each night will be lead by a different student who has thought a lot about the particular issue. They must pick a video to show or an object or a slideshow of images that can introduce the idea to the audience. So for example, copyright could be images of Ron Arad’s chairs and the knock offs along with more examples, and designing for other cultures could be IDEO’s water filter bike as well as a design which has not been successfully received.

These visual prompts will hopefully spark debate (over the first free beer). The debate will go on for as long as feels natural but I’d make sure I have some characters who want to argue with each other – people like Matt – people who will make other people disagree with them, people to hot things up.

Then – partytime! Disco ball and cool music. Illustrators can display their art on the walls and design-DJs will DJ. This way people can promote their work for free and get contacts, and be inspired, all for £5, including one free drink. And different people get a chance to part-lead an evening, which is something that could even go on the CV.

All we need is a venue that is cheap to hire and cool and accessible to people – maybe a downstairs of a trendy bar in central London. People from different unis would have to know about it and tell each other about it. People from Foundation would be especially encouraged to come, since it may inform them with their decision on which uni to apply.

£5 – run by students, for students. Not bad eh?


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