Hi! Just when you thought that I have disappeared from the blog world I am here again with a new post. It has been a long time since my latest post, I know. It has happened so much, and I have not had the time.
A lot of my effort has been focused on the Swedish Association of Designers, where I have been the Chairman since 2011. We have been developing the organization and I have been around at meetings with ministries and institutions, and representing in Sweden and abroad. Besides the nordic countries I have been to Hong Kong for the Swedish partnership in one of the biggest design conferences in the world – BODW – Business of Design Week. I was invited among the honored guests and participated also as one of the moderators; I was responsible for the sustainable design session with keynotes from Catarina Midby and Margareta van den Bosch from H&M, Hans Hassle from Plantagon, Kristoffer Hansén from Scania and C.L. Lam from Hong Kong based Green and Associates. The whole week gathered around two hundred swedes in Hong Kong and BODW had about 100.000 vistors. It was a huge success! Thank you General Consulate of Sweden and Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Read more about the Swedish partnership at www.bodw.com and www.sweden-livingdesign.com
I am also proud to tell that I am member of the board at Form/Design Center in Malmö since one year. During 2014 opened up to work in the Malmö-Öresund region. It is one of the most interesting and dynamic regions in Europe right now; a hot spot for design and creativity. I am very happy that we grasped this opportunity to live and work at another place, it is very inspiring and enriching. This doesn’t mean that the studio in Västervik is closed, I have kept my office and workshop there as well. At the moment we have a house in Västervik and a flat in Malmö.
Since beginning of 2015 I am more in Västervik again. The reason is that I had a new born that arrived in February! I have also accepted an offer from the municipality of Västervik to work half-time as project manager for urban development projects. It is very interesting and I learn a lot from being involved into these contexts. I can contribute with new perspectives, and I can have use from my skills within creativity management, design processes and sustainability. It is a lot about adding methods for co-creation and to enhance the dialogue and communication within urban planning projects. It is a lot of interesting projects going on. So far I have led the work for a new street and I am working right now on a square.
There has been so much happening so I can not write about it all here. As the last thing I will just briefly inform you a bit what is going on with me and Iceland. I have been there many times now, and the visits has become more often. During 2014 Design March I was a part of a group who exhibited the results from a design initiative in Utah, USA. We focused on design for Small Communities. We also held a seminar and a workshop in Hannesarholt in Reykjavik. It is an initiative from the group Designers & Forests where I am one of the co-founders, established in 2013. We were starting up an dialogue on how design can be used as a method and a process for sustainable development. We presented the work process that we have developed; EXPLORE-REFLECT-RESPOND. All the participants on the seminar was invited to take part in some exercises that we had prepared. This initiative will be followed by other projects with a similar approach; next one starts now in end of July and beginning of August 2015 in the forests and communities of upper State of New York. More info www.designersandforests.us
Anyhow, it was Iceland I was about to tell more about. Since 2014 I have two new commissions connected to Iceland. One of them is to develop a couple of new series of lamps for a lamp company. I am working on this with my dear friend and colleague Kristjan Kristjansson who is a Lighting Designer and lives in Reykjavik. During Design March 2015 we were exhibiting the prototype af a new lamp – the Puzzle lamp. It will soon be out on the market. We also showed the conceptual Hollow lamp that is very much appreciated and we have got a lot of attention from. More info about the lamp designs will come during fall 2015.
The main project that I am working on in Iceland is Afangastadurinn Austurland – Destination Austurland. It is a destination design project where eight municipalities in east Iceland have agreed on collaboration for developing a common destination platform. Austurland is the region of esat Iceland. It is a spectacular region. Fantastic nature, fjords, wildlife, culture, a lot to see and do and very nice people. I am very happy to be involved in this initiative. The tourism is one of the new primary industries of Iceland, and a lot of effort is being put into the sector in national contexts. Austurland is now one of the regions who takes the lead are pioneers in many ways. The focus for the initiative is to strengthen the attractiveness and competiveness of the destination, and to create a framework for long term, sustainable and profitable growth for the tourism industry. The focus is also on regional development, and on the well-being of communities and residents. The initiative intends to establish a community movement and a framework for destination development. Everyone are invited to get involved. Methods being used aims for co-creation, dialogue and communication throughout the whole process. Áfangastaðurinn Austurland is initiated by FAUST – Ferðamálasamtök Austurlands, and run by Austurbrú.
As I already said, it is hard to update about everything that is going on. This is enough for now. I promise that next blogpost will come soon.