Pilots: Navigating Next Models of Design Education was a programme of experimental participatory workshops, curated by El Ultimo Grito in collaboration with David Falkner and the Stanley Picker Gallery, addressing the impact of the internet on studio-based design education. Involving a host of participating education experts, designers, artists, academics and students, the initialPilots sessions took place at the Stanley Picker Gallery throughout May 2013.
Pilots was presented as a cinematic experience, deliberately set as a filter between the participants and the audience. Pilots both articulated and investigated three of our main research interests: design education, the aesthetics of systems and pre-cinematic structures.
OPEN CALL. Film by POI
The space was divided into two main areas, the Arena, where the sessions/workshops/dialogues take place, and the Observatory the place from which the audience would witness the development of the sessions (the observatory also had an online site where the same content was being streamed). The two spaces are only connected by means of a 'cinemascope' two way mirror viewing window, that allows the audience to see what is happening inside while the participants can act naturally away from the visitors direct gaze.
ARENA _ hyper-functional / light
_ White-board table with markers, chairs, video recorder and microphone set on top recording all annotations, drawings and models.
_ Beamers, speakers, laptops, wi-fi connection to facilitate presentations and sharing of content.
_ High working table, materials, tools and work bench, photocopier & printer
_ Camera and microphone for documentation
OBSERVATORY _ cinematic / dark
_ Flat-screen showing stream video from the whiteboard table camera.
_ 'Cinemascope' two way mirror viewing window and double height seating.
_ Speaker delivering the live sound picked up by the microphones set in the Arena.
_ Every night a short video of the days session was edited.
_ Flat-screen showing archive video loop and seating
How can we re-evaluate the processes by which we seek to disseminate knowledge, and analyse how this expertise is applied in an evolving digital world?
How can we creatively exploit the possibilities that online content makes available, and how will this impact the design curriculum?
How can we ensure that collaborative group-based learning continues to play an active role in design education?
How does location affect learning and, if being ‘at’ university is to be re-evaluated, what is to be gained (and lost) by the proliferation of web-based learning?
How can we redefine learning as the production, rather than the consumption, of knowledge?
Pilots identifies three variable parameters constituting the educational experience, that can be applied to analyse, adapt and develop models of practice across a diversity of disciplines:
CONTENT: Subject Expertise
CONTEXT: Physical Scenario
CONTROL: Practical Guidance
Pilots employs the parameters of CONTENT, CONTEXT and CONTROL as the principal variables in a series of experimental live-sessions in the artificial confines of a gallery environment, each week led by an invited “Pilot” from design education. A web-based lecture or demonstration provides the starting point for each session with Pilots Participants developing a collective response that may take the form of a graphic, an object, an action and a text. Gallery visitors are invited to witness the live scenarios, as they evolve, from the Pilots Observatory, with a round up of the previous sessions’ activities available to view both onsite and here below.
Pilot Week 2: Next Culture. Piloted by Ronen Kadushin. Participants: David Falkner, Liam Healey, Alon Meron, Alexandra Midal, Eelko Moorer, Florian Schmidt, Jana Scholze and Marloes Ten Bhomer.
Pilot Week 1: A is for Apple - Authenticity, Authorship and Authority. Piloted by Daniel Charny Participants: Ben Barker, Koby Barhad, James Cadogan, Fred Deakin, Francesco Draisci, Sam Hill, Paddy Molloy, Andrew Slatter and Juliet Sprake.
Pilot Week 4: Experimental Everything. Piloted by El Ultimo Grito. Participants: Stuart Bannocks, Tony Dunne, Volker Eichelmann, Rachel Falconer, Mark Harris, Julian Henderink, Catherine McDermott, Annelore Schneider and James Thompson. Mirror Session @ Science Gallery, Dublin. Piloted by Alex Milton.
Pilot Week 3: Icebergs, Robots and The Algorithmic Remix of Design Curricula. Piloted by Matt Ward. Participants: Johanna Agerman Ross, James Auger, Zowie Broach, Sunil Chhatralia, Rebecca Davies, Nick Ferguson, Marguerite Humeau, Brian Kirkby, Alice Moloney, Sorcha O'Brien, Rafel Oliva Serra, Mike Patrick, Joseph Pipal, Noam Toran and Louise Wilson.