From 13th to 17th of May, the first “Austrian Design Wild Week” took place. It was organized by the Academic Design Network Austria, a network of several Design Universities and Universities of Applied Sciences in Austria. During this week, design students from all over Austria got the chance to visit and experience everyday life at different design universities. The FH JOANNEUM gave students the opportunity to participate in classes, workshops and lectures offered by the Institute of Design and Communication as well as the Institute of Industrial Design.

Here is a short review about the Austrian Design Wild Week at our Institute of Design and Communication:
After a brief introduction on Monday, the students visited the Lecture Days of the Designmonth Graz. Five international speakers, gave talks at the Auditorium of the Joanneumsviertel under the title “COMMON! Design for society”.

Alexandra Sankova, who received her Master of Arts degree in Graphic Design from Stroganov Moscow State University of Arts and Industry, spoke about women in design through the troubled history of Russia. After that, Julianna Faludi, PhD discussed how technology can be used for setting free the Human by liberating the User and empowering the Consumer with social innovation. This is the current quest for entrepreneurs, designers and scholars. Margot Bloomstein, principal of Appropriate, lnc. from Boston tackled the question “Who can we trust and how do our users invest their trust?”

On day two, Julia Kloiber, a former student of the Information Design Bachelor program at the Institute of Design and Communication of the FH JOANNEUM in Graz, discussed on how we can look past bleak sci-fi dystopias and focus on how technology can help improve society.

Cell phones are usually an unwelcome disruption. But between the two talks of day two, an unexpected orchestra of smart phone sounds, was presented by Josef Gründler and students of the Master program Communication, Media, Sound and Interaction Design.

Amongst the Speakers at the lecture days, was also Rebecca “Bucky” Wilies from Detroit, who spoke about her life, her main influences and how architecture and design can interact with the emotions of its observers. On Thursday, Bucky held a workshop for the participants of the Austrian Design Wild Week. In this workshop, she presented the concept of “Bleeding Heart Design” and other theories as foundation for design ideas that may foster love between strangers and celebrate interdependence.

Text: Michael Forster and Speakers
Photography: Michael Forster