New Focus on Culture, Education and Business
West Michigan Design Week, with planners including IDSA Michigan, Chapter Chair Craig Mackiewicz and Vice Chair Paul Martus, is taking off April 6-11. In its second year, the annual event is celebrating industrial design’s connection to culture, education and business.
The schedule includes: A Look Behind Design: A Process Gallery; Experience Design: Michigan House; Design Thinking for Social Impact; Women in Design; Understanding Empathy: A Design Thinking Workshop and tours of the Ehlers Amtrak Station, Pew Library, Meyer May House and Custer Headquarters.
It also featured a Pop-Up Talk on “Design Process: Learning from Making” by Tucker Viemeister, FIDSA, founder of Viemeister Industries, who tells IDSA he was “thrilled” to speak to a standing-room only crowd of professionals and students at the Kendall College of Art and Design (KCAD) at Ferris State University. “We are entering a new era of design and Grand Rapids feels like a place eager to take advantage!”
Viemeister also is the subject of a Q&A with mibiz.com. “I’m interested in how the design process and progressive education pedagogy are similar,” he says. “I hate the fact that designers think they’re doing something brand new or that educators are complaining because their process can be applied to other things. I think it’s interesting that both of these things are very similar and that designers can learn a lot through project-based learning—and that educators can use a little more design in their work to do better, too.”
KCAD has an IDSA Student Chapter advised by Assistant Professor John Moroney.
Earlier this year, the state with the largest number of industrial designers launched a new Michigan Design Council as a key part of Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder’s 2015 strategic plan to attract talent and increase economic activity.
“Michigan’s numbers are impressive and hold immense potential,” says Jeevak Badve, IDSA Central District vice president; Sunberg-Ferar vice president, strategic growth; and a founding MDC board member. “The MDC will leverage these statistics to increase awareness and draw talent and commerce to the state.”