Cranbrook: A New Domestic Landscape. Photo by PD Rearick (Photography ’10).
2017-18 3D Department Newsletter
Visiting Artists and Designers
Jessie Unterhalter and Katey Truhn
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.
This spring, acclaimed architect Vito Acconci will visit the Academy to deliver the special lecture, POTHOLE/SINKHOLE/PITCHOLE/CHUCKHOLE/
MUDHOLE/RUT/PIT. He will spend four days with our students, discussing work and touring the city of Detroit.
This past fall, we welcomed Peter MacKeith, Dean of the Fay Jones School of Architecture at the University of Arkansas. In the lecture, “A House of Finland,” he traced the emergence, development and ongoing vitality of Finnish cultural identity through a century of significant architecture and design, presenting examples from the last 100 years, and emphasizing the building of community through public architecture.
Curious about who else has come to Cranbrook? Watch all archived lectures on our website
Department Partnerships and Exhibitions
Cranbrook: A New Domestic Landscape. Image: PD Rearick.
Cranbrook: A New Domestic Landscape. Image: PD Rearick.
Our program maintains a balance between Fine Design and Industrial Design, as evidenced by our many ongoing partnerships with galleries and design-driven manufacturers. Read more about these partnerships and recent exhibitions on our website.
Last spring, our department partnered with Cranbrook Art Museum to exhibit Cranbrook: A New Domestic Landscape. The exhibition examines the role of designed objects that define and animate our interior environments, featuring contemporary furniture and furnishings by recent alumni and Artists-in-Residence of Cranbrook Academy of Art.
Much like the department here at Cranbrook, the work challenges conventions of use, explores new materials and techniques, and blurs the boundaries between art, craft, and design. Read about it in Sight Unseen and Dezeen. Sight Unseen used the occasion to interview four of our alumni featured in the exhibition and to ask them about their experience as students at Cranbrook.
The Fall semester featured a one-day symposium in conjunction with the exhibition, Cranbrook: A New Domestic Landscape. Jennifer Scanlan, Curatorial and Exhibitions Director at Oklahoma Contemporary, along with recent Cranbrook alumni featured in the exhibition, explored the intersection of art, craft, and design. A panel discussion and question-and-answer session, moderated by visiting 3D Designer-in-Residence, Vivian Beer, followed the presentations.
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.
Recently, 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.
In the past year the studio traveled to New York City for studio visits exploring many models of practice including design consultants, designer/makers and self-producers. Visits included 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 hisPVC Series, in which Craig heats and manipulates PVC water piping by hand, transforming it into sculptural and sometimes functional objects.
Alumni Accomplishments and Exhibitions
Begüm Cana Özgür’s Shade collection
Frank McGovern (3D ’16) and Raveena Bhalara (3D ’17) joined Nike in Portland to support materials research for footwear. Cranbrook 3D now has six recent alums hired by Nike.
LA-based Ross Hansen (3D ’09) was recently included onSight Unseen’s American Design ‘Hot List’. He is now represented by Volume Gallery in Chicago and showed works at Design Miami in December along with other Cranbrook designers on Volume’s roster including Jonathan Muecke and Ania Jaworska.
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.
Begüm Cana Özgür (3D ’12) recently launched ‘Shade’, a new line of rugs with world-famous manufacturer Nanimarquina, who hosted a debut at their New York City showroom during Design Week.
Jonathan Muecke (3D Design ’10) was named one of eight finalists for the Hublot Design Prize.
And Nina Cho (3D ’15) was invited to a residency at the Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio to explore new applications of glass in her work.
Scott Klinker Design Superset
Scott Klinker lightspace drawing
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.
He is currently developing a lounge seating system with American contract furniture maker, Gunlocke, which will launch in June at the Neocon furniture show.
Recently, Klinker spoke with Core 77 magazine about design as an expanding discipline and its cultural agency.
Scott’s more experimental design work is represented by his gallery Playground Detroit, which currently features his lighting work in an exhibition called Community.
This 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 Supersetand have become a separate investigation of form, space, color, material and light. The product was recently profiled in Sight Unseen.
During his sabbatical Scott took time to explore ideas about light and space in photos, constructions, and drawings. You can follow this on-going process on his Instagram channel.