This past weekend’s This American Life was all about fresh takes on the hackneyed debate about climate change – and new ways to spur action. The segment that aired on National Public Radio featured this year’s honorary degree recipient Bill McKibben, whose 350.org is leading a grassroots movement on this critical issue.
Divest RISD, our own student-run environmental group, was included in the national media coverage. Senior Emma Beede 13 IA, its leader, was interviewed as part of the story. Also this weekend, at the RISD’s Board of Trustees meeting, an official Study Group was appointed to examine the Divestment issue.
Two short 2011 films by Steven Subotnick (Critic, FAV), Two and West, will screen this June at the Festival of Nations in Ebensee, Austria. Two is a visual dialogue based on timing, gesture, mark-making and sound. West is one in a series of short animations about the destruction of the American wilderness.
The Interior Architecture department just released Volume 4 of its annual journal Int|AR (Interventions|Adaptive Reuse). Edited by Department Head Liliane Wong, Assistant Professor Markus Berger and Critic Maya Marx, each iteration of the journal examines various issues related to preservation, conservation, alteration and sustainability in the realms of architecture, landscape design and urban design. Volume 4 focuses on how designers can overcome negative public associations with a building site so that the space can be successfully adapted and reused.
On Wednesday interdisciplinary artist Adriana Farmiga presented the third and final lecture in this spring’s Painting Department Visiting Artist Lecture series. A faculty member and graduate of Cooper Union, she discussed her work in terms of her personal history as a first-generation American of Ukrainian descent, a feminist, a New Yorker and a practical working artist.
Last year Farmiga had the opportunity to try her hand at set design for the independent film Higher Ground. Although most of the scene with her painstakingly created set ended up on the cutting room floor, the experience inspired her to take a new approach and resulted in Versus, a solo exhibition at NYC’s La Mama Gallery.
The 2012 exhibition featured photographic and sculpted representations of ancient lichen-spackled tombstones and a 10-monitor loop showing out-of-focus black-and-white credits from 10 of her favorite New York City films and TV shows.
The whole experience was a fine example of how Farmiga “tricks herself” into trying new approaches in her art – a bit of advice she offered students at the lecture. Other practical advice included learning how to photograph one’s own work and writing readable installation instructions when shipping pieces off to an exhibition. And finally, Farmiga advised: wherever life takes you after art school, “love what you do.”
Created by venture capitalists Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, the program pairs top US design and engineering students with innovative Silicon Valley startups for a three-month summer internship. Mazumder will be working with Palo Alto-based Flipboard, a company “on a quest to transform how people discover, view and share content by combining the beauty and ease of print with the power of social media.”
Greg Victory, director of RISD’s Career Center, describes Mazumder as “an amazing designer with an intense entrepreneurial spirit” and points out that he’s one of the founding members of E’ship, RISD’s new student group of aspiring entrepreneurs.
Amanda Thackray MFA 12 PR will soon be spending her summer solstice suited up in a cold weather gear. The RISD alum is among a small crew of artists and scientists chosen to participate in a two-week residency program that takes place on Barquentine tall ship bound for the Arctic Circle.
“I am extremely excited to be a part of this voyage,” notes Thackray. “I’m intrigued by the Arctic’s landscape.”
While aboard the wooden vessel, the printmaker anticipates that the ship’s nautical line will deeply inspire her sketches. “I will learn to tie knots with traditional rope and my own paper rope. These structures will form the foundations of my still life drawings.”
To help fund the icy expedition that departs in June, the printmaker launched a Kickstarter campaign to partially fund her flight to Longyearbyen, Norway. Donors will receive tokens of Thackray’s appreciation in the form of graphite drawings inspired by the ship’s rigging.
“Your thoughtful contributions to this project will help to further my research and allow me explore the Arctic through collaborative artistic experimentation,” writes Thackray. “I can’t wait to embark on this journey.”
Business Insider has dubbed Shaun Modi 07 ID #33 in its new list of the top 75 Best Designers in Technology. The list includes designers of mobile apps, websites and user interfaces, among others, with the ranking based on experience, quality of work, number of nominations from readers and the size of the company where the designer works.
Modi, who worked at Google before joining Airbnb as an interaction designer, recently led the web and mobile design for Wish Lists at Airbnb (the popular lodging company founded and run by Joe Gebbia 05 ID/GD and Brian Chesky 04 ID). He also helped the company revamp its iPhone app last summer. David Lee 00 GD and Willem van Lancker 10 GD also made the top 75. Congrats all around!