Design with the 90% Exhibition

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Sherry Hoffman, Faculty Director, Designmatters September 27, 2018

I had the privilege of representing the college and the Designmatters department at the opening of the Design with the 90% exhibition at the Bill and Melinda Gates Discovery Center in Seattle featuring Safe Agua Peru

Designmatters’ partner, SHE28 was also featured. It was fun and meaningful to see so many ArtCenter alumni in attendance, a growing local presence, there to support one another and Designmatters.

The current exhibition includes more than 25 projects of which only two, ArtCenter and MIT, represent students from a college or university. Designmatters student work has been a part of the series, highlighting projects that demonstrate how design can be a dynamic force for social change, since the first Design with the Other 90% exhibition at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in 2007. 

A couple of voices from the exhibit that resonated with me – Elizabeth Scharpf, Founder of Sustainable Health Enterprises (SHE), expanding on the definition of design, said that “being a designer is about listening and being humble”. Cynthia Smith, Curator of Socially Responsible Design for Cooper Hewitt, talked about the importance of including student work as a way of helping the next generation know what’s possible. 

After walking through the exhibit with each of the designers, I felt a sense of hopefulness and an assurance that people are out there doing good work to create a positive change in the world. Let’s continue our efforts and share more about that!