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Experimenta Design” was founded in 1998 by Marco Sousa Santos – Industrial Designer – and Guta Moura Guedes – Designer and Cultural Manager. Creating an international platform for cultural and design in Lisbon, was their main goal. Design as a discipline and a work methodology which, through the analysis of distinct fields such as economy, aesthetics, technology, sociology can produce the most adequate responses to the needs of contemporary society. Since its first edition in 1999, Experimenta Design [EXD] has been establishing in Lisbon a dynamic cultural platform comitted to fuel international discussion. EXD acts as a catalyst between creative artists and designers, academics and all those who view culture and design as key factors for development at all levels.

Until 30th October Lisbon will be taken by a storm of multidisciplinary program of events under the theme “The medium is the matter”. This theme targets communication media and a communicative objects – a realm where sometimes matter seems less important than the messages it conveys, and in which the interactions between those who create and those who receive become the actual product.

Open Talks, Jonathan Barnbrook

What is the core of design? Graphic Design is applied art that serves well defined functions to solve communication problems for clients. But there’s more.

The visual language created in this last century has become part of our culture, its engraved in our lives. Now the best way to know a country culture is through design. Fifty years ago, when someone would like to learn culture references of some country they would had to look for a painting. A design piece as now a cultural value. Max Bruinsma says that designers are catalysts, they are like chemists that “cook” elements to improve communication an cultural expression.

The exhibition in only a part about graphic design. More importantly, it is a visual essay about the ways design’s visual languages are used in our communication culture. On a deeper level, it wants to inform you, and ultimately it wants to engage you into taking part in the message and in the contexts and causes it serves. Jonathan Barnbrook (UK) said that we need to have a different attitude as a designer. We need to be true with ourselves, do the work that we think it’s true. Jonathan also said that to achieve all that we need to start looking first to ourselves as a citizen of the world, and then as a designer. As a citizen/designer we have the power to communicate,…and through that we can make a difference in the world. Erik Adigard (NL) agrees with them,..and adds that the designers can be educators, creating design’s with social value.

Sets out to make a critical review of contemporary living spaces. The project brings together twelve architectural proposals to improve every aspect of the home dwelling experience, adapting to the habits and customs of the contemporary Portuguese family. It reflects, at the same time, the economic and cultural changes in Portugal over the last decades. The objective is to demonstrate that the house is more than a support of lifestyles and habits.

Casa Portuguesa

Under the joint coordination of 4 senior designers, Martin Ruiz de Azua, Fernando Brizio, Alvaro Sobrino and Antonio Silveira Gomes, 40 students of product and communication design from 12 portuguese and spanish universities were invited to take part in an intensive workshop entitled “Pin Pong”, on the theme of this year EXD. S*Cool Iberica goal is to forge emerging talents, and to develop the relations between portuguese and international institutions.

S*Cool Iberica

Its an essay that looks into the growing use in contemporary design of methods imported from crafts, and to designers who are giving back the sense of individuality and identity to objects against the anonymity and standardization of industrial and digital design. Design objects gain a subjective dimension, a unique and distinct character, in opposition to the cold and sterile of mass production. All objects are unique, with subtle differences like they were hand made, reflecting their creators.

My World, New Crafts

Offers an overview of the latest portuguese industrial and communication design. Its showed the work of 80 designers including Daciano Costa, Siza Vieira, Miguel Vieira Baptista, Souto Moura, R2design, Silva!designers, RMAC, Mario Feliciano, Jorge Reis, and illustrate the new dynamics of portugues design, which gained international recognition and visibility.

Miguel Branco, Krukurva

This exhibition analysis the contemporary Portuguese design. The history of portuguese industrial design is relatively recent, whilst communication design, subject to political, economic and technology constrains, only gain force since the overcome of dictatorial government in 1975, bringing itself up to date in an effort to catch up with the international scene.

Brought to Lisbon prominent figures from the design scene as well as other disciplinary fields. Stefan Sagmeister, Rudy Vanderlans (Emigre), Renny Ramakers, Massimiliano Fuksas, Eduardo Souto Moura, Philippe Starck, talked about their work, and the effects of design in the contemporary culture.


[Help wanted] Inviting volunteer staff / pro bono for contribution and translation. Please e-mail to us.