The intersection of science & design

I’m excited about this new column from Paola Antonelli on SEED magazine’s Web site.  Antonelli curated the fantastic “Design and the Elastic Mind” exhibit at MOMA (I never saw it personally, but I’ve spent hours on their brilliant Web site).

Here’s an excerpt from the first column, called “Core Principles”:

” Designers find themselves today at the center of an extraordinary wave of cross-pollination. Because of their role as intermediaries between research and production, they often act as the primary interpreters in interdisciplinary teams, called upon not only to conceive objects, but also to devise scenarios and strategies. To cope with this responsibility, designers need to set the foundations for a theory of design and become astute generalists. At that point, they will be in a unique position to become the repositories of contemporary culture’s need for analysis and synthesis, society’s new pragmatic intellectuals. As scientists increasingly embrace this role of the designer, and also recognize in designers like-minded innovative thinking, science will become design’s most precious ally.”

I’ve always been fascinated with the intersection between science and art, especially from a ‘that-which-makes-us-human’ standpoint , so this prediction that science and design will intersect in a very pragmatic way is exciting to think about. Much as our primary role as Americans drifted from citizen to consumer with the introduction of mass marketing in the early 20th century, so it seems (and I am absolutely not the first person to say this) that mass distribution of conversation and ideas is moving us from consumer to consumer/creator in the early 21st. Fun.

Links:

SEED magazine: http://www.seedmagazine.com/

“Core Principles” by Paola Antonelli: http://www.seedmagazine.com/news/2009/02/core_principles_1.php

Design and the Elastic Mind: http://www.moma.org/exhibitions/2008/elasticmind/

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