Whether by providing agitprop for revolutionary movements, an aesthetics of empire, or a language for numerous avant-gardes, design has changed the world. But how? Why? And under what conditions? We propose a consideration of design as an historical agent, a contested category, and a mode of historical analysis. This interdisciplinary conference aims to explore these questions and open up new possibilities for understanding the relationships among design, history and revolution. Casting a wide net, we define our terms broadly. Papers will examine the roles of design in generating, shaping, remembering or challenging moments of social, political, economic, aesthetic, intellectual, technological, religious, and other upheaval. We consider a range of historical periods (ancient, pre-modern, early modern, modern, post- and post-post-modern) and geographical locations (“West,” “East,” “North,” South,” and contact zones between these constructed categories). We examine not only designed objects (e.g., industrial design, decorative arts, graphic design, fashion) but also spaces (e.g., architecture, interiors, landscapes, urban settings) and systems (e.g., communications, services, governments). And we approach design from a diversity of disciplinary and inter-disciplinary approaches. Keynoted by Barry Bergdoll, Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design at The Museum of Modern Art, and Professor of Architectural History in the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University, this conference brings together scholars from the humanities, sciences, and social sciences with designers. We hope not only to present multiple methodological approaches but also to foster conversations across traditional spatial, cultural, and disciplinary boundaries. https://designhistoryrevolution.wordpress.com/
All events are in Kellen Auditorium, 66 5th Avenue


This conference is sponsored by:

School of Art Design History and Theory at Parsons The New School for Design

History Department at Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts and The New School for Social Research

Humanities Department at The New School for Public Engagement

Global Studies Program at The New School.

For more information about these departments and programs, please click on the links above.