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Conference Design.Experience.Challenges 2016


For the fourth year Latvian Designers Society organized design research and education conference Design. Experience. Challenges supported by Culture Capital Fondation of Latvia.

By accepting coexistence of different design concepts, the aim of the conference is to provide a platform for researchers from various industries and professionals to share experience and knowledge not only in the traditional design disciplines, but also including a broad range of social, economic, political, historical, educational, philosophical, scientific and technological issues related to the design and its impact on the professional and educational environment.  More information on http://designconf.com.lv/
The conference propose a wide range of scientific areas that are associated with the design. The main theme this year was the photography:
– as the possibility to change a quality of environment, public attitude and awareness;
– as a method in social research and strategic design;
– as the possibility to create a new reality and a different level of aesthetics.

These topics are related to both design and art education and interdisciplinary research. This is the reason of interest of a wide range of audience: art and design program students and pedagogues, students of other areas as well as professionals in the design and photo areas participated in the event.
This year the conference was held in two parts.

Conference and Workshop “Photography as a method of social research and design”

December 19, Rezekne Academy of Technologies

On December19 Rezekne Academy of Technologies (RAT) in collaboration with the Latvian Designers’ Society (LDS) held a seminar and workshop PHOTOGRAPHY AS A METHOD OF SOCIAL RESEARCH AND DESIGN.

The event highlighted the need for research of design and served as an intermediate in the study of performance, which analysed the results of a pilot study –the view of the emerging designers on environmental problems and possibilities of their solution.

LDS council spokeswoman Andra Irbite opened the seminar and presented the design research methodology in social research and strategic design. German guest lecturer photographer Manuel Schroeder demonstrated a vision of the post-Soviet architectural remnants through the prism of photography. In turn, the Daugavpils School of Art and Design “Saules Skola” and Valmiera Art School teachers had gathered their students’ photo-moments on current urban problems and their solutions with the help of design. Also achievement of the students of Rezekne  Academy of Technologies revealed the importance of photography as a tool for investigation of the environment.

The students of program “Design” and “Computer design” of the Institute of Arts at Daugavpils University demonstrated the process of creation of the image of Daugavpils from the formulation of challenges and opportunities and brainstorming to the offer of design products.

The participants of German guest lecturer photographer Manuel Schroeder’s workshop worked in groups and offered ideas for the inclusion of post-Soviet architectural remnants into the contemporary environment.

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Foto: E.Zlatkus

At the closing of the event, guests visited the Engineering Faculty of Rezekne Academy of Technologies and attended the graphics exhibition “Continuity” of lecturers and students of RAT at Latgale Embassy “Gors”.

Seminar/workshops “Design experiences and views”

September 30, 2016, International Exhibition Centre, Riga

Design workshop was focused on the research of the tools of communication design and the intention group, which is widely used in Latvia, but still has not developed into a systemic practice of implementing the competence.

Chosen for the workshop was the photography practice segment, which constitutes the experience of form comprehension, strengthens the motivation of its usage skills and consolidates the experience of message intent identification. In photography, this knowledge corresponds that of other branches of design, which is connected with the choice of correct and safe materials to ensure the functions in the long run.

Lecturer and chairman of one of the workshops Manuel Schröder emphasized the conditions of creating such responsible documentation, which involves respect for the reality itself and correspondence of information generated by the photographer to this reality.

As the practical assignment for this section was selected identification of objects from degraded environment and analysis of effectiveness of the cultural investigation of such environment.

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Photo: A.Donecka and A.Priedite

Integrated into and as part of the art project „Concrete Delusion“ the main value of this masterclass was to open the photographers‘s and designer‘s minds about their daily urban environment and teaching their awareness about contexts of architectual leftovers and setting artistic points of views (M. Schroeder).

More information about  the results of the workshop and photo gallery    http://design.lv/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Masterclass_DESIGN-ISLE_Riga-1.pdf

Another segment of the workshop – “Domestication of form“– also anticipated the conclusion to respect the conditions of reality observation. The difference – to pay special attention to the quality of the shape of reality and the relationship of the colouring and the rhythm of image composition. The aim of the workshop – to acquire the skills of arranging new information provided by an image or to obtain the skills of managing information of special intention in order to highlight the nuances of the shapes of reality.

The third segment of the workshop “Lesson of the language of  jump” continued to study the possibilities of recording reality by selecting the genre of full-body portrait and documenting a person in the environment where this person is located at that moment. The task was supplemented by a nuance reinforcing the attractiveness of the form of portrait – the person is fixed at the moment of jumping. Each approached person himself chose the environment and the intensity of his movement. Photographer’s task was to select the most appropriate shooting tactics in order to achieve the practical efficiency of the expected image (communication design product).

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                                                                   Photo: A.Priedite

To sum up the work of the participants and the issues raised in the study process, it can be concluded that the potential of the photography as a creator of communication design product is insufficiently discussed and emphasized in the curricula for the training of new specialists.

Photo album can be viewed here