2016-17 3D Design Department Newsletter
Visiting Artists and Designers
Matt Olson Workshop
Sabine Marcelis DAWN light series, 2015
At the Academy, students set their own course of study. Our studio-based program means we don’t have a standard curriculum or classes, and instead provide students with the resources to allow for individual exploration and growth.
The workshops and visiting artist program supported by each department allow students to hear from a variety of voices in the world of art and design, and often establish connections that extend well beyond the two years of graduate study.
Recently, Matt Olson, of the design studios RO/LU and now OOIEE, visited campus and conducted a three-day workshop with our students. Based around a series of photographs showing abstract sculptor Anthony Caro’s “testing lot” for a group of work, our students created sculptures of their own, using a group of essays curated by Olson to inform the work.
Last month, Chicago-based industrial designer and artist Stephen Haulenbeek delivered a public lecture and worked with 3D students individually about how to develop an independent design practice. Watch his lecture on our website.
Dutch designer Sabine Marcelis will visit in March to talk with students about her investigations into the manipulation of light paths that has influenced her recent work.
Finally, Anthony Dunne will visit next month to talk with students about his transition from Head of the Design Interactions Programme at the Royal College of Art (RCA) to his private studio practice, Dunne & Raby (with RCA colleague Fiona Raby). He’ll conduct a workshop and deliver a lecture and also discuss his new book “Speculative Everything,” co-written with Raby.
Department Partnerships and Exhibitions
Aleksandra Pollner (3D ’16)
Our program maintains a balance between Fine and Industrial Design, as evidenced by our many ongoing partnerships with galleries and design-driven manufacturers. Read more about these partnerships on our website.
This spring, the department opened the exhibition Fine Design for the End of the World at the Collective Design Fair in New York City, and received accolades for their work from around the world. Curbed magazine listed the exhibition in their “Top 10 Must-See Highlights at the Show.” Blouin Artinfo said the exhibition was a “highlight” and Hyperallergic said it was one of the “most enticing” exhibitions in the show.
Core 77 takes a long look at the work and talks with Designer-in-Residence Scott Klinker.
The exhibition explored how today’s most pressing challenges – such as social and economic inequalities, rampant material consumption, and environmental degradation – can become subjects for critical and poetic reflection in design objects.
Look at all of the work in the exhibition on the website designed specifically for the project.
Travel and Studio Visits
3D Design visits Airstream
Through our program, our students visit some of the top manufacturing centers throughout Michigan to tour their facilities and talk with company design leaders. They also visit with accomplished Academy alumni, many who have chosen to stay in the area to launch their own studio practices.
This year, the department visited contract furniture makers Steelcase and Herman Miller in west Michigan. They also traveled to Ohio to visit Allermuir and Airstream, where students learned first-hand about each company’s design and manufacturing techniques.
The department plans to travel to New York City for studio visits in January and explore many models of practice including design consultants, designer/makers and self-producers. Visits will include time at IDEO, Antenna Design, Leon Ransmeier’s studio, Rich Brilliant & Willing, and Snarkitecture.
They also visited the local studios of Christopher Schanck (3D ’11) and Jack Craig (3D ’12). Schanck is best known for his signature Alufoil series, in which his objects appear to have been chiseled from hunks of precious metal (several pieces grace the Dior and Tom Ford stores in New York). Read his recent conversation with Core 77.
Craig is a sculptor whose works span furniture, lighting, and installation. He is best known for his PVC Series, in which Craig heats and manipulates PVC water piping by hand, transforming it into sculptural and sometimes functional objects
Alumni Accomplishments and Exhibitions
Leit System designed by Matthew Plumstead
Scrambler by Jonathan Muecke
Hannah Vaughan (3D ’16) recently spoke with LVL3 about her practice and how she got her start.
Frank McGovern (3D ’16) joined Nike in Portland to support materials research for footwear. He is the fifth recent 3D alum to be hired by Nike.
Robin Chen (3D ’16) joined design consultancy LDA in California to develop consumer electronics.
Lu Liu (3D ’16) joined Creme Architecture and Design in NYC to design retail and hospitality interiors.
Mark Dineen (3D ’13) joined Colorado State University as Assistant Professor in Design.
Matthew Plumstead (3D ’12) launched a modular lounge system with Tuohy, an American contract furniture manufacturer. His Leit System had its debut at Neocon, the annual industry trade fair in June.
Christopher Schanck (3D ’11) recently began a collaboration with design gallery Friedman Benda who also represents design icons like Marcel Wanders, The Campagna Brothers and Andrea Branzi. His new work was featured prominently at Design Miami in December (and featured on Artnet as one of “nine fascinating objects.”)
Jonathan Muecke (3D ’10) showed new work with Volume Gallery at Design Miami in December. See the work in Wallpaper magazine.He also hosted a solo exhibition at the gallery entitled, Open Objects. Read more about the exhibition here. He was also featured in a recent CNN story about investing in the arts market.
Lowrider Lounge by Scott Klinker
lightforms by Scott Klinker
Scott Klinker Design Superset
Scott Klinker, Designer-in-Residence and Head of 3D Design, maintains an active studio while also continuing to show new work. His Low Rider Lounge, a rocking chair for indoor, outdoor, home or office lounge settings, is currently available in a variety of colors through Offi & Co.
In October, Klinker spoke with Core 77 magazine about design as an expanding discipline and its cultural agency.
And just this month, Klinker debuted new work in the group exhibition Ambience, presented by PLAYGROUND DETROIT, which featured the work of Steve McShane, George Vidas and Patrick Ethen. Read more about it here.
Klinker’s recent series, collectively called lightforms, explores connections between lighting and painting. Taking a cue from artists of the “light and space” movement, including Dan Flavin and Robert Irwin, Klinker believes that, “there is more to explore about light ‘within the frame’ of painting.” See the collection here.
Klinker also launched a new product called “Design Superset.” A building block kit made of a wide range of materials including wood, stone, metal, plastic and felt. The Superset is the “ultimate 3D sketch tool for designers and architects dealing with classic geometries.” View the product on his website to see photo constructions that were inspired by the Superset and have become a separate investigation of form, space, color, material and light. The product was recently profiled in Sight Unseen.