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Disarming Design from Palestine
Causes: Arts & Culture, Education
Contemporary Design meets Local Crafts After 7 years of developing the thought provoking design label Disarming Design from Palestine we would like to establish an alternative design school. We respond to the need for a vibrant design program which maintains an active relationship with the local design and crafts communities, and can be flexible in its format. Many craftsmen and designers are active in Palestine, but due to the occupation and the often marginalized positions, they lack enough work, innovation and exposure. Grounding a Design Discourse Since this summer our organization is based in Birzeit in the beautiful historic building Hosh Jalsa where we have started design related activities; like an architectural drawing club, a film program, a library club and workshops on upcycling, typography and more to come. These smaller workshops are focussed on the local community to empower people with design skills. On the longer term we want to establish a critical design program where we concentrate on the impact of design in a conflicted and politicized reality. It will be situation specific formats in collaboration with local and international educational institutes. It will offer learning experiences that feeds to the economic, political and artistic independence of designers. How can artistic action in a polarized reality feed self-expression? How can the social impact be activated in processes of co-design The income we will receive will be used to acquire educational equipment (i.e. screens, furniture and tools), to develop our design library with more relevant books and materials, and to organize design workshops in collaboration with designers, artisans and institutes as the Palestine Museum and Birzeit University. Additionally we will use the funds to establish a professional design program in collaboration with international renown design institutes (like the Sandberg Instituut Amsterdam) where local and international designers can collaborate on exploring the soft power of design.