Natalya Locke ACD MFA Practicum Spring 2013
Around The Table: An Investigation of Collaborative Design and Making
With fine furniture making as the collective goal, Around the Table seeks to elevate would-be consumers to makers. Through the sharing of skills and experience, collaborators are empowered to design and construct their own heirloom dining room tables.
This project is at once a pedagogical philosophy, artistic practice and innovative design strategy. Following an optimistic vision of design, this project envisions and activates a holistic, communal approach to the making process. Around the Table facilitates opportunities for people to experience the work of the hand and to develop unforeseen connections to material, environment and community.
This project embraces an apprenticeship style of learning, which endeavors not only to teach skills, but also to create aware, self-reliant and passionate craftsmen. This vision of design questions the prevailing notions of designer as lone genius, setting trends and producing product, and instead seeks to elevate designer to facilitator, educator and co-learner. With their hands in the work, facilitators and collaborators connect with the processes, energy and labor embodied in the objects that surround us.
Over the years Around the Table will continue to grow through the voices of the collaborators and memories embedded in the tables. It is our collective goal that these objects continue to communicate their stories and to share the spirit of collaboration and the empowerment gained through the work of the hand.