In the final episode of my June series on my professors, I talk to the co-director of MICA’s MFA graphic design program Ellen Lupton. In addition to her work at MICA, Ellen is the Senior Curator of Contemporary Design at Cooper Hewitt, and a prolific author of notable design books like Thinking with Type, Type on Screen, and Graphic Design: The New Basics. In our conversation, recorded a few days after graduation, I talk with Ellen about her own career as a designer, writer, curator, and educator, how she thinks about writing for emerging designers, and how the design discourse has changed over the course of her career.
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Nina Paim is a designer, researcher, curator, educator, and activist. She is currently the director of Futuress, an editorial platform about feminism, design, and politics. She co-edited the book Design Struggles: Intersecting Histories, Pedagogies, and Perspectives and edited Taking A Line for A Walk. In this episode, Jarrett and Nina talk about Futuress and ideas around feminist publishing, how she got into design, and creating spaces for dialogue within and around graphic design.
Guus Beumer was the general and artistic director of Het Nieuwe Instituut from 2013 to 2021. Before this, he was director of NAI Maastricht and Marres Center for Contemporary Culture. In this episode, Jarrett and Guus talk about the founding of Het Nieuwe Instituut, institutional administration as a design process, and balancing stability and instability in cultural institutions.
Aric Chen is a curator, writer, and design historian. He was recently appointed the general and artistic director of Rotterdam’s Het Nieuwe Institute (The New Institute) and previously served as curatorial director for Design Miami, curator at large for M+ and creative director of Beijing Design Week. He also is a professor and founding director of the Curatorial Lab at the College of Design and Innovation at Tongji University. In this episode, Jarrett and Aric talk about the value of wide interests and multidisciplinary careers, building M+’s collection, and what he hopes to do in his new job.