From August 1-16, 2015 the College for Creative Studies (CCS) in Detroit will organize the Summer Sessions 2015 educational program with the Graphic Design Arnhem (GDA) department of ArtEZ Academy of Art & Design Arnhem.
It is a first collaboration in the U.S. between the two schools, whereas CCS has already organized several summer sessions in The Netherlands over the past ten years. The Summer Sessions 2015 program will take place at the CCS campus, and involve 30 students from The Netherlands and the U.S., as well as one tutor from CCS (Doug Kisor, Chair of the Graphic Design department at CCS), and six guest tutors from Arnhem, including Vinca Kruk of Metahaven, Hendrik-Jan Grievink of Next Nature, Thomas Castro of LUST/LUSTlab, Coralie Vogelaar, Femke Herregraven of Bitcaves, and Nina Støttrup Larsen of Bitcaves, all innovative and avant-garde design bureaus from the Netherlands.
The Summer Sessions program comprises two phases: research and design.
The first week is dedicated to research and input. First, the students will get to know each other through short presentations where every student introduces themselve, their work and a personal research question. After that, the students will kick-off the research through several introductory group excursions in which they will collect as much (visual) information as possible. The tutors will hold mini-masterclasses to share various research methodologies with the students. These are the tools and methods that the tutors themselves use in their daily practices. The first week will end with a group crit.
The second week is dedicated to design. The focus will be on producing work. Students will have the opportunity to sign-up with the tutors for individual crits. These ‘sessions’ are what the Sessions are about: one-to-one dialogue with some of the best critical thinkers in the field. The tutors will help hone your concepts and sketches into viable design outcomes. The students will wrap-up the week with a presentation of their results in a public group show. Special guests and visiting artists/designers will participate in this final critique.
Throughout the two weeks, students are actively encouraged to produce as much visual material and textual content as possible, in the form of drawings, diagrams, physical models, mock-ups, critical writing, etc. Activities will alternate between closed-knit collaborations, individual talks, group crits, excursions, thematic lunches and mini masterclasses given by (guest) teachers.
Metahaven is an Amsterdam-based research and design outfit on the cutting blade between politics and aesthetics. Founded by Vinca Kruk and Daniel van der Velden, Metahaven’s work—both commissioned and self-directed—reflects political and social issues in provocative graphic design objects. Metahaven published Uncorporate Identity (Lars Müller, 2010), Can Jokes Bring Down Governments? (Strelka Press, 2013). Vinca teaches Design Research at Graphic Design Arnhem.
Hendrik-Jan Grievink is designer and art director of the Next Nature Network, a research, development and design network that investigates the impact technology has on our society, especially how it radically transforms our existing notions of nature. Next Nature Network produces daily observations on www.nextnature.net and self-initiated projects such as the NANO Supermarket and the In Vitro Meat Cookbook, which was recently presented with a Dutch Design Award. Hendrik-Jan teaches Design Research at ArtEZ Graphic Design Arnhem.
Thomas co-founder and principal of LUST/LUSTlab. LUST is a graphic & interactive design practice interested in exploring new pathways for design at the crossroads of new media & information technologies, architectural & urban systems, and graphic design & typography. Thomas teaches Design Methodology and Typography and is the Head of Department at Graphic Design Arnhem.
Femke Herregraven is an artist whose research traverses global finance, information and geopolitics. In her work she investigates which new material base, geographies and value systems are carved out by contemporary financial technologies and infrastructures. Her work has been presented at the project, Serpentine Extinction Marathon and exhibited at T293, Naples, Bureau Europa, Maastricht, V&A, London, Witte de With, Rotterdam and Centre Pompidou, Paris.
Nina Støttrup Larsen is a graphic designer and researcher based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
“Through my work I create new relations between research methodologies from the social sciences and questions I ask as an artist. In my work as a teacher I learn students to implement research in their work. A good research begins with a clear research questions. The second aspect I teach is the diversity in possible research methods and how to implement them.”