Critical Design Meets Openness 

A session to open up, learn and discuss about the critical thread of design and its cross-breeding with Open Design.

Chair: Ramon Sangüesa (La Mandarina de Newton SL)
Invited Speakers: Lisa Ma, Laura Forlano, Luiza Prado & Pedro Oliveira.

Critical Design and Speculative Design are well-stablished areas within design. As Anthony Dunne once put it “Critical Design is design without a happy ending”. That is, design as an exploratory method to confront the unknown or difficult issues, not necessarily as a process that ends up in another useful product or service. In that view design is a way of doing research to find ways around difficult social issues, marginal communities, etc.

It is a variant of design that is meant to provoke and create discussion, to involve people more than “users” into a productive dialogue by exposing new views, counterintuitive realities and other baffling experiences that confront the very roots of design.

Because of this intention, it is a way of designing specially connected with aspects of involvement, participation, discussion, democratizing and potentially openness.

The involvement of the very same people that are affected by a difficult issue (internal contamination, new technologies, new scientific results, new ways of producing, …) makes a connection with some of Open Design tenets.

Some threads of the “critical tradition” such as “critical making” try to connect both worlds.

In this session we aim at communicating the main ideas behind Critical and Speculative Design by presenting the work of several designers and to start a discussion with participants in order to connect with their interests and their views on Open Design.

We hopefully expect to come out of this session with a roadmap to reinforce and synergistically integrate both threads of design.

This session is possible thanks to La Mandarina de Newton