New Delhi – The Indian Institute of Art and Design is amongst the first Art and Design institutes in India that has collaborated with Kingston School of Art (KSA), Kingston University, London – global pioneers in art and design education.The ongoing interactions of Kingston School of Art’s Faculty with both students and faculty at IIAD is part of Kingston’s academic partnership.
The Head of Design School at Kingston School of Art Prof. Chapman’s two day visit included addressing IIAD students, faculty and the executive committee members.
With the former’s rich experience in Fashion, Graphic, Communication Design, Illustration, Animation and 3D Design, the interactions centred around Design and the teaching methodology at KSA. During his insightful interaction, Prof. Chapman shared a presentation titled – ‘Making Sense – A workshop to support L6 students’ and spoke intensively on the topic of ‘Making Sense’ and how it relates the core values of Design. He said, “Design is the core to a lot of the things we do. Education, for example, is built on Designed Curriculum…In fact, just about everything we do in our lives, is built around the process and methods of Design.’’
Being his maiden visit to India, Prof. Chapman was particularly enthused to meet, in his words, ‘the Future of Fashion, Interior and Communication – the young and budding artists/designers of IIAD.’ He then impressed upon these young minds the importance of ‘being you while taking inspiration from others,’ something his own father, a painter, impressed upon him as a young boy.
He then went on to speak about the process and method of Design and how both IIAD and Kingston University have a lot in common especially as both stand to facilitate a safe environment and present opportunities for the students to learn, while granting them the freedom to make mistakes as they develop as ‘creatives.’
Sharing one his experiences at Pentagram, the world’s largest independent Design Consultancy, Prof. Chapman quoted Tea Uglow, Creative Director for Google’s Creative Labs for Europe, saying, ‘Most of the projects that Tea sees as successful, are the projects that have had an awful lot of failure involved.’
He also quoted the famous James Dyson as stating that behind the success of the Dyson are many failed prototypes.
Addressing the students at IIAD, Prof. Chapman spoke on ‘Creativity, Innovation & Learning and the need for individuals to remain perpetual and lifelong students in their quest for learning.
He engaged IIAD-ians in Benjamin Bloom’s famous Taxonomy of the 1950s and it’s pertinence in the 21st century. Bloom had categorised ‘Creativity’ highest in his taxonomy.
Terming everyone present in the room as problem solvers, he encouraged the students to own a drawing book and document everything they can in their creative as well as mundane processes. He told the students to document their own ideas while also referencing to other people’s ideas and also to test what they’re doing while building prototypes in the process.
He then drew upon Niall Ferguson’s ‘Variety of Networks’ for the students to try and relate to metabolic maps, software graphs, electronic circuits and semantic nets. He encouraged them to rethink what a Network might be and how we interact amongst ourselves through networks.
Moving on, another very important aspect that he touched upon was ‘Innovation in Education.’ He said Design is evolving and emerging; new ideas are giving birth to new experiences; and that design should ideally be human-centred as that’s the way to make the world a better place.
Touching upon the three important types of teaching – tutor led, individual led, peer – group led, he laid emphasis on the last one for it being particularly instrumental in an exchange of ideas and critiquing each other’s work .
In closing Prof. Chapman summarised his interaction by saying, “Scholarship is about challenging ideas and we are involved with challenging ideas.”
He left the IIAD students with some food for thought, “ What is gone before us is inspiring. But now what are we going to do with that? What’s our world now, your world? What are you going to make of it?
Prof. Chapman was especially impressed by the pedagogy being followed and implemented at IIAD.The participation of students and their insightful views during the interaction was something he gave special mention to. He also likened the infrastructure and teaching methodology at IIAD to that of Kingston and stressed upon the two institutions’ strengthening and robust collaboration based on their like mindedness and termed it a unique tie-up.