Organized by Design Core, Detroit Month of Design was filled with real-world and virtual events that celebrate the UNESCO City of Design. Architects, planners, designers and makers came together for talks, installations and virtual exhibits. Here are three features that Azure found especially enlightening, which you can still take in both online and in person (including Never Normal, the exhibition pictured above):
Webinars: Our New Social Reality
Moderated by Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects’ Sinead Finnerty-Pyne, this two-pronged panel discussion brings together architects, designers and community activists to discuss initiatives that seek to transform aspects of the city for the better.
Hear from: Lauren Hood, of Deep Dive Detroit, on how socio-cultural expertise needs to be valued on par with design, and on the true meaning of reparations in the context of community engagement; John George, of Motor City Blight Busters, on how the Farm City Detroit program is building a new, solar-powered kids camp from shipping containers; and Steven Lewis of the architecture firm ZGF on how public spaces need to be designed and programmed to more actively invite community members to make use of them.
Webinar: Designing Sustainable Cities Book Release
Edited by Sigrid Bürstmayr and Karl Stocker, Designing Sustainable Cities: Manageable Approaches to Make Urban Spaces Better (Verlag Birkhäuser, 2020) issues an appeal for design “as a means to improve, repair and save the world.” This panel discussion includes renowned Detroit metal craftsperson Carlos Nielbock, whose public art work is prominently featured in the book, alongside Maria Luisa Rossi of Detroit’s College of Creative Studies and representatives of other sustainable design projects.
Virtual Exhibition: Never Normal
Never Normal, curated by Form&Seek at Wasserman Projects (where it is on display until December 31), brings together a selection of products and experiments from a vibrant array of designers and makers around the world. The show’s preview, which you can watch here, also takes virtual visitors behind the scenes to witness how these talents do what they do. You can catch Simon Anton and team assemble their Plastic Vacation installation (made of plastic toy waste) and Bilge Nur Saltik cast her ceramic Ripple coffee cups, among other spellbinding delights.
Check out these three highlights from the citywide event that took place in September – with some features running until the end of the year.