This summer, The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Schools of Architecture and Design (KADK) in Copenhagen has organised an exhibition of 220 of its graduation projects, comprising works from 80 newly graduated designers and 140 newly graduated architects, showcasing their ideas for tomorrow’s architecture and design.
The exhibition shows how architecture and design can contribute to solving everything from big world themes to problems of a more aesthetic and functional character. On view are models, sketches, material samples, apps, 3D visualizations and products on a 1:1 scale.
“Design and architecture are high on the political agenda, because we need innovation and somebody who can present visionary proposals as to how we can shape the modern and sustainable society”, says the rector of KADK, Lene Dammand Lund.
DANISH™ went to the graduation show and had a talk with the designers behind two of the exhibited projects: A furniture for peace and contemplation and Friends in Plate Land.
Designed by architect Anna Mee Dybbroe Andersen, the first project mentioned above is a modern interpretation of a winged armchair that has built-in loudspeakers from the Danish Hi-Fi brand Bang & Olufsen. This combination of sound and space started with a fascination for sound that arose during Dybbroe Andersen’s time working at Bang & Olufsen, where she was employed for a couple of years.
“Loudspeakers are a physical object in a room, so I thought that you could combine the speakers with a physical object that we already have in our living room. It’s a combination of technology and furniture, so to speak. I also made this project to investigate how the armchair’s outer and inner space functioned together – including taking into account the challenges of working with noise”, says Anna Mee Dybbroe Andersen.
According to the newly graduated designer, the armchair creates a zone of sound that makes the user disappear a bit, but at the same time be present. A lot of experimentation went into the project, including dialogue with acoustic engineers to ensure that the concept chair had the right acoustic and spatial qualities.
Friends in Plate Land is an interactive tablet game for children that combines the physical world with the digital realm. To play the game, players need to build different objects in the physical world in order to move along in the digital game. The tablet’s camera can register the objects, e.g. a boat, to allow the game to continue to the next challenge.
“Children’s digital competencies should be strengthened, so time spent on say a tablet can be important for their development, but a lot of that time is time spent sitting still. My project seeks to meet this challenge of children becoming physically inactive, while spending time on a tablet”, says Patrick Fritz, who is a newly graduated designer and the creator of Friends in Plate Land.
There is also a social aspect to this new digital graduation project as well as an attempt to provide an alternative to the more usual sedentary digital games. Children can identify themselves with Friends in Plate Land, so the game’s physical objects are very simple and minimalistic. In this way, when children play the game they can imagine the objects to be everything from a brick wall to a boat floor.
“Our world is getting more and more digital, so we have to remember our physical development. I believe that this way of thinking, i.e. combining the digital world with the physical world, is here to stay. It is a positive development, which will hopefully comprise the best of both worlds”, says Patrick Fritz.
The graduation exhibition is on display until 16 August 2015 (note, however, that it will be closed 6 – 26 July).