Design Canberra Festival Design Canberra Festival

CraftACT Gallery. Artist: Tom Skeehan. Photo: Dream Pieces
CraftACT Gallery. Artist: Tom Skeehan. Photo: Dream Pieces

Object/Subject

Object Subject is a national design conference calling on the design sector to take seriously their responsibilities – social, environmental and ethical.

International and national speakers include: experimental materials research designer Seetal Solanki (UK), arts editor Jennifer Higgie (UK), Indigenous architect, lecturer and advocate Jefa Greenaway (AUS), editor, writer and podcaster Clare Press (AUS), urban design researcher and editor of Assemble Papers, Jana Perković (AUS), and awarded Australian singer, writer, director, and advocate Robyn Archer (AUS).

Thought-provoking content and timely conversations from the conference will build critical and creative thinking and ethical creative practice. It is essential for designers, practitioners, writers, policy makers, curators and editors working in both public and private contexts.

For instance, our keynote speaker Seetal Solanki is a materials designer, researcher and educator based in London. She is Founder and Director of Ma-tt-er, a materials research design studio, consultancy and school, advising, designing, communicating and educating what materials are and can be in order to implement a more responsible future. Solanki is the author of “Why Materials Matter” (2018) and a Visiting Tutor at the Royal College of Art. Solanki will invite conference participants to rethink our use of resources: ‘From the experimental to ones used in large-scale manufacturing, from handmade to machine-made, from physical to digital, from natural to synthetic and from ephemeral to enduring. Overlaps between them prove that borrowing from other sectors and sharing techniques can help us progress towards a responsible future that is more accepting of an interdisciplinary design approach. By looking at materials’ potential we can shape new meanings, with positive social, environmental, economic and political effects.’

Registration is now open to attend this important conversation.

View the full program here.

Students, emerging practitioners and arts workers from the not-for-profit sector are encouraged to apply for a full bursary to attend at no cost.

The conference program is as follows:

Thursday 7: Conference reception – 6pm (Plastique Fantastique’s Twin Minigagarin at Canberra Airport)
Friday 8: All day – 8:30am-5:00pm (Kambri at ANU, Cinema)
Saturday 9: 8.30am-1:00pm (Midnight Hotel, Braddon)

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