Dialogues for sustainable design and art pedagogy. The AH-DEsign project

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | C2 Toimitettu kirja, kokoomateos, konferenssijulkaisu tai lehden erikoisnumero
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Aalto University publication series Art + Design + Architecture, 1/2013
Participatory design and accessible exhibitions have played an essential role in the fields of fine art and design for a long time. In the two-year AH-DEsign Accessible and Sustainable Design project involving three European universities, we wanted to rethink those important efforts from the perspective of everyday life and various stakeholders and audiences. New approaches were tested, developed for, and displayed in three TANGO exhibitions (TANGO=Towards A New interGenerational Openness) organised as part of the project in Nantes (FR), Milan (IT) and Helsinki (FI) during the spring of 2013. This book is the final publication of the project, offering further discussion of the ideas and processes raised during the past two years. The AH-DEsign project was funded in collaboration with the European Commission Culture programme, and between the leading Aalto University, and partners Politecnico di Milano and L’École de design Nantes Atlantique. Contemporary design and up-to-date perspectives on exhibitions place humans in the centre of the processes. The methods of participatory design and radical art pedagogy have over the recent years had similarities in their views of different publics and stakeholders. Pedagogical approaches have been found to be meaningful and informative in the AH-DEsign project, because here human-centred design and accessible exhibitions are understood to be crucially important. They are in fact so important that we can even talk about an educational turn in design. Engaging users as co-designers is not a new approach to design practices. However, it becomes a new approach when the pedagogical perspectives are well acknowledged. While participatory design looks at the process as something that gathers information from people to aid the design process, educational approaches are concerned with the learning and engagement of the participants, and with eventually revealing something new either for or with the participants.
sustainable design, participatory design, art pedagogy, art curating
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