08 22The School of the Untold

From August 7th to 13th we will mentor the workshop Performative Plasticity “Transitive Matters” for the Design Campus at the Kunstgewerbemuseum Dresden.
The School of the Untold is a collaborative 6 weeks program curated by Formafantasma.

Plastic refers to materials of which the form is evolutive. In fact, form and material are inherently connected in the word itself, originating in the Greek word “plastikos” referring to something capable of being shaped or moulded.

Over the course of time, the word has come to a freeze on the term and tends to refer to the petrol-based synthetic materials making up much of our material world. Though a human-made material, plastics are to be found everywhere and anywhere around us on this planet – in the form of packaging, architecture, transportation, healthcare, and electronics, or even reaching into bloodstreams of living organisms in the form of microplastics.

The evolutive timeframe of those materials hasn’t been considered in the design of objects, leading to a broken connection between form and material. This has resulted in an issue of compatibility between the evolutive timeframes of our natural environment and the timeframe of this human-made material we call plastic.

During this workshop, and based on the museum’s extensive collection, we will critically look at plastic’s evolution throughout time, consequently leading to questions of future realities related to plastic. The role we as designers and human beings perform in this context will be questioned and challenged through materiality and research.

The School of the Untold
Map of Synthetica, a continent of plastics, published in “Fortune” Magazine, 22 October 1940.