An Eye On Design

One of the great joys of working in the creative industries is discovering the work of your contemporaries, and enjoying the continued efforts of people you admire. Recently we had the pleasure of attending the Manchester Design Conference 2016 and interacting with those people.

Across the conference there were a huge and diverse number of speakers and displays, from art installations to printmaking to the design of great Museum signage. There were too many talented speakers to see them all but here are a few of our highlights.

Renowned designer and artist Jason Burges discussed his truly breathtaking installations which have been enjoyed across the globe. His piece Back to Front utilises light sensing monoliths to react to pedestrians, foliage and even the weather. We were particularly taken with the seamless integration of interactive technology and design in such a natural setting. 

Equally stunning were the displays from Field which combined technology and art in a truly unique way. The team has created numerous installations that are infinite and reactive thanks to the use of procedurally generated content. The lighting, colour and form of the pieces is ever changing and evolving through smart algorithms. The team even created a piece which is changed and formed through the complexity of global trading and finance.

Lastly hearing Peter Girardi speak about his long and illustrious career was remarkable. His imdb page reads as a who’s who of all things super. From the big names of Batman and Superman to the Looney tunes by way of Mike Tyson. Hearing Peter recall his teenage beginnings as a graffiti pioneer in New York city to forming and running his own highly successful studio was both heartfelt and genuinely inspiring.

There was more to see and enjoy than we could shake a design seeking stick at and we enjoyed it so thoroughly that our seats for next year are already booked.

Eddy Strickland