See what happens when Polish designers team up with their Ukrainian, Moldavian and Belarusian counterparts! The Observatory exhibition features objects produced during three editions of an international design workshop for design students from Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus, conducted by Polish designers from Studio MALAFOR. The exhibition will be on display at the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven this October.
This year at the Dutch Design Week, the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, under its flagship brand Culture.pl, will present the Observatory exhibition which will feature objects produced during three editions of an international design workshop for design students from Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus, conducted by Polish designers from Studio MALAFOR. The workshops, which began in 2015, took place in Poland’s beautiful and green Kashubia region. The setting of the workshops was by no means random – nature was the key inspiration and catalyst for their unique designs.
The exhibition is a guide of sorts: to regional traditions, to the participants’ origins and the impact their origins have on their work, as well as the influence of nature and natural resources on the creative process. However, it’s not a guide to countries in any national, political or historical sense. It does not present national design but instead highlights the role of sensitivity to the surroundings in which an object is created and used, as well as the designer’s awareness of where they come from, what traditions they have been shaped by.
This is precisely the type of sensitivity that the workshop instructors from the MALAFOR Studio strive to teach. The participants hail from distant regions, bringing with them their own local traditions, symbolism and colours. During the workshops, they sit down together in a place which inspires them to create designs intended for that specific location or for the regions they come from.
The objects are made of traditional materials such as wood, clay and stone, using time-honoured artisanal techniques such as carpentry and pottery. In the most recent edition of the workshop these techniques were combined with 3D printing.
The exhibition is a reflection of the search for balance between traditional and modern technologies of production, an exploration of themes concerning environmental protection, glocality and the social responsibility of a designer. In the age of overproduction, these seem to be particularly important points of reference in the design of the future. Visitors will have the opportunity to learn about the contexts that determined the creative processes behind the objects on display.
The exhibition is curated by Studio MALAFOR. The students taking part in the exhibition are from the following schools: the Kyiv National University of Structure and Architecture, the Kyiv State Institute of Applied Arts and Design, the Kharkov State Academy of Design and Arts, the National Forestry and Wood Technolgy University of Ukraine, the Technical University of Moldova and the Academy of Fine Arts in Chisinau, the Belarusian National Technical University, Belarusian State Academy of Arts, and the Brest State Technical University .
The exhibition is organised by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, under its flagship brand Culture.pl, as part of its programme promoting Polish design worldwide. The exhibition is organised in co-operation with Studio MALAFOR.
Source: press materials, compiled by NR, 9 Oct 2017