Malfatto: Imperfect Design for a Better World?

On Friday, May 13 from 10am to 5pm, this intriguing one-day symposium will explore a current cultural phenomenon – the movement among consumers away from the type of clean, supremely functional aesthetic that only industrialization could realize – towards unique, sensual objects that make explicit the human origins of their manufacture. Why is it that the world is being flooded with carbon copies of consumer icons, and how do we distinguish one device from another? Why are we faced with a maze of utilitarian objects that all look alike? What is the appeal of the hand-manipulated unique object? These questions as well as the relationship between experimental and "big business" design, and that between the developing and industrial worlds in the context of design’s globalization are among those that the speakers will address in this lively and heated debate.

The distinguished panel includes renowned designer Gaetano Pesce, trend forecaster Li Edelkoort, artist Kardash Onnig and design thinker John Thackara. The event will be moderated by author and New York Times automotive journalist Phil Patton. Malfatto is organized by Material ConneXion.

The symposium takes place at Tishman Auditorium, 66 West 12th Street, New York, NY. Cost is $200 for the general public [$250 after April 15], and $180 for Material ConneXion members [$225 after April 15]. To purchase tickets, please call (212) 842-2047.