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26 Aprile 2012

International conference: Design as Symptom: Things, Signs and their Effects

There is no doubt that design today is more than ever a symptom of contemporary culture. It seems today that there is no thing or surface that is not the work of a designer.

Design covers everything and everyone in a dense network of quite subtle relations, clever allusions and ironic background references. In design, society shows how it is and also how it wants to be; its knowledge, secret desires, cravings and suppressed longings are no less apparent than its neuroses and psychological abysses.

The question however is: What exactly is it that design shows? And how is it shown? What is communicated and how? What is the effect of signs in our rapid, frequently automated everyday perception? Can design indeed speak, or does the specific nature of design by itself allow us to form an emotional relationship with the world?

The conference Design as Symptom – Things, Signs and their Effects invites notable designers and architects, as well as personalities from the fields of philosophy, linguistics, design and architectural theory to Bozen in order to ask the question of design as a living symptom of present culture. Contributors will be attending from the USA, Great Britain, Germany, Switzerland, Iran, Lebanon and Italy.

The lectures will be in English, Italian and German.Following the conference, on 16 and 17 May two student design workshops will raise the question of the reciprocal working of theoretical insights and practical design work. The noted designers Peter Crnokrak (London) and Reza Abedini (Beirut/Tehran) will teach the workshops. The workshops are organised by Prof. Antonino Benincasa and Prof. Christian Upmeier.

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