Design shapes the way we live : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

I enjoyed reading the December 1999 Fast Company Article about Eva L. Maddox by Ron Lieber.

Eva L. Maddox said, design shapes the way we live so it ought to serve everyone. She has been in business more than 30 years and has won more than 70 awards for her work in design. Her works have been featured in 16 books and more than 60 magazines and journals.

One of her contributions is the concept of branded environments, a design sensibility that argues that anyone who walks through the door of a workplace ought to be able to decipher immediately what people do there, who they do it for, and what values the organization stand for. But what Maddox has really contributed is a design school that is based on her philosophy of leadership. The school teaches a kind of community involvement.

In 1994, the design school, Archeworks was born in Chicago to provide an alternative, multidisciplinary education. It put a dozen students on projects for nonprofit and other organizations that ordinarily would not have the financial resources needed to acquire good design talent. The students soon found opportunities to apply their craft on a variety of worthy projects, such as making furniture for disabled people that live in one room, pill boxes for AIDS patients, and head pointers for cerebral palsy patients.

With the help of Stanley Tigerman, Maddox found a home for the design school, that would provide an avenue for examining unexplored design problems. The goal was to find a positive environment that would produce results and not provide a conventional education. Eva is all about breaking down barriers, says Tigerman. The following is how Maddox breaks boundaries.

Do not stop with the sketch pad. Good ideas are a dime a dozen. Unless you can conduct research to create ideas, to test them, and then implement them a big idea does not mean a thing. We look for clients with problems that they do not know how to solve, not projects that clients know what they need.

Find your significant others. Cross pollination between designer, lawyers, art historians, retail display, and experts in other fields, stops competition and brings collaboration.

Bring your best stuff to the masses. Design shapes the way we live. The rich need good design the least.

Maddox is a person with a vast amount of knowledge in the field of design, and honorable enough to share that knowledge with others that need her. She has become a servant of people that can not repay her for her goodness. From what I read she is truly a great person that I would like to know more about. Her focus is outside of herself, helping others, and by that she has found herself.

-- Anonymous, March 07, 2000

Moderation questions? read the FAQ