Everyone’s a Designer, Critic, Curator

Andrew Blauvelt

Everyone’s a Designer, Critic, Curator

Filmed on October 18, 2016 at the 2016 AIGA Design Conference

The role of the designer has evolved over the past 30 years as designers sought an expanded role and voice in the creation of their work. At the same time, there has been a corresponding diffusion of cultural authority throughout the population at large. Now, it seems, everyone’s a designer, a critic, a curator. This session examines one designer’s response to the forces of change, and how designers adapt to find creative opportunities that extend the act of designing into other areas of practice: writing, editing, publishing, and curating.

Director of the Cranbrook Art Museum, Andrew Blauvelt is a designer, curator, and writer who focuses on the cultural and social contexts of design. He has curated several design exhibitions, including Graphic Design—Now in Production, with the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum; and Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia. He is editor of the book Parallel Cities: The Multilevel Metropolis, chronicling the concept of the elevated city.

Blauvelt received his M.F.A. in design from Cranbrook Academy of Art and has been a practicing graphic designer for 30 years. He has received nearly 100 awards for design, including the National Design Award for Corporate & Institutional Achievement from the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. In addition to teaching design and architecture at several universities, Blauvelt has served on the national board of directors of AIGA, and in 2016, was named a Fellow of AIGA Minnesota. He is also an elected member of the global design association, Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI).