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Duncan Anderson Design Lecture Series Provides Variety Of Topics

Published: February 15, 2013

Duncan Anderson Design Lecture Series

The Duncan Anderson Design Lecture Series concludes this spring when stars from the world of design explain to the CSULB community how to create everything from shoes to computerized clothing. Admission is free.

The twice-yearly series was established by the Anderson-Malcolm family to honor the memory of Duncan Anderson, a former CSULB industrial design student who died while attending the university. The series is offered in conjunction with a pair of $6,000 Duncan Anderson scholarships that support two outstanding industrial design majors every year.

Series organizer David Teubner, a CSULB graduate and member of the Design Department since 1992, thanked series benefactor Cecilia Anderson-Malcolm for her continuing yearly support.

“Through the years, the Duncan Anderson Design Lecture Series has invited top professionals to share their knowledge and experience with design students at CSULB,” he said. “Thanks to Cecelia Anderson-Malcolm and the Duncan Anderson Endowment, CSULB now has an ongoing design lecture series to rival those at private design schools. The CSULB Industrial Design Program is working closely with IDSA-LA and its student chapters to schedule an exciting line-up of speakers. CSULB has the facilities and budget. IDSA-LA has the connections. It is a symbiotic relationship.”

The Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) represents the industrial design profession, with a focus on furthering design quality, effectiveness and positive image. IDSA’s mission is to take the lead in the industrial design profession, mainly through networking but also by promoting education and professional development. IDSA-LA is the Los Angeles chapter of the IDSA, the Southern California “voice” of the industrial design profession.

Past series highlights included last spring’s visit by filmmaker Gary Hustwit, director of Brand Communications for San Francisco’s Smart Design Anna Shaw and the principal architect at the New York office of Perkins Eastman, Nicholas Leahy.

The theme of this year’s series is entrepreneurship. “We bring these people in to inspire our students, not because we want our students to solve other people’s problems, but because we want them to follow their own cool ideas,” he said. “Last year, we invited Dario Antonioni because he is a designer who became a Kickstarter entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship is one of the things we’re really promoting now.”

This lecture series is the hub for design’s alumni, professional and student outreach and played a role in attracting one of five district conferences sponsored by the national IDSA to Long Beach on April 11-13. The Western District Conference will meet under the theme “The Designer as Entrepreneur.”

He thinks that’s a good theme because it is the message the department has heard throughout the run of the lecture series. At least two former lecture series speakers will address the distinct conference, while one of the Anderson speakers is a CSULB graduate. “It all connects,” he said.

The spring 2013 Duncan Anderson Lecture Series concludes with:

Feb. 21:
Cartoonist, writer, storyteller and creative thinking consultant John Pearson will demonstrate some “off-road” drawing techniques that show how drawing may be the most powerful ideation tool ever invented.

Feb. 28:
Alexander Klatt is vice president of Global Design for the Anaheim-based Fisker Automotive which introduced the world’s first premium hybrid electric vehicle, the Fisker Karma. Teubner thanked Klatt for his eagerness to volunteer. “It is really cool to have someone that high up in the company respond that quickly to our invitation and be that enthusiastic,” he said.

March 7:
The United Kingdom’s John Owen is an expert on modern automotive design who studied sculpture at the Royal College of Art. He was the first director of the Centre of Excellence in Product and Automotive Design. “He is our first international speaker,” said Teubner. “He will not only lecture but host a workshop on the following day.”

March 14:
Ernesto Quinteros is a CSULB graduate who serves as the Chief Brand Officer at Belkin International consumer electronics based in Los Angeles. Belkin International, Inc. manufactures consumer electronics that specializes in connectivity devices. “He watched the company grow from a small company to a fairly large one,” said Teubner.

March 21:
Scott Robertson is a concept artist for the Hollywood film industry and has authored DVDs for the Gnomon Workshop. He also founded Design Studio Press.

March 28:
Yvonne Colacion is an interior designer and founder of Colacion Studio, an international design firm based in Los Angeles. Colacion not only designs private offices and homes, she creates the interiors of yachts.

April 25:
Eric Bricker will screen his documentary “Visual Acoustics” in an event held in conjunction with the Film and Electronic Arts Department in the University Theater. Film Chair Jerry Mosher will host the evening.

May 2:
Lynne Bruning will describe her work in the new market of e-textile and soft-circuit design or computer-controlled clothing. “She makes smart clothing,” Teubner explained. “Her expertise is in the creation of computerized purses and the like. She creates jackets that communicate.”

May 9:
Robin Perkins brings a multidisciplinary background to the series as she explains her approach to design through some of her creations including the gateway design for the Los Angeles World Airports and her client work with the Pacific Design Center, Coca-Cola and Universal Studios. “She is an expert in environmental graphic design such as way-finding systems that guide visitors through spaces like airports,” Teubner explained.

The level of creativity on display in this year’s series gives Teubner second thoughts about his program’s degree. “I wish we could change our degree to ‘creative thinking’ because that is what the program is all about,” he said. “We train our students to solve any problem, whether or not it is in industrial design. We teach creative problem solving. Many of our graduates achieve their degrees in industrial design, then realize they have earned a skill set that allows them to go on and do other things.

“There are only two rules about who we invite,” Teubner concluded. “The first is that the speaker must talk about something creative and the second rule is you can’t be boring. It isn’t about industrial design anymore. It is about anyone who has the passion and creativity and wants to share it.”

–Richard Manly