3 october 2017

Meet the 2017 antenna conference speakers

Meet the 2017 antenna conference speakers

These graduates want to change the world in ways we never thought possible.

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Mar Ginot Blanco and two of her fellow students, Ellie Birkhead and Aaron Garlick, from Design Academy Eindhoven will present their project called Ageing on the Move.

The students will use their speculative design project to examine mobility in 2050 and what that might look like. The rate at which the population around the world is growing means we have to reexamine how we deal with space and travel.

With Ageing On The Move, architecture and transport merge to create an autonomous transport system that will change the fabric of our cities.

machine activates new possibilities for the circulation and reuse of materials, while preventing the user’s private history from disseminating into the public sphere.


Totomoxtle is a project by Fernando Laposse from Central Saint Martins.

His project looks at native Mexican corn husks and uses them as surfacing veneer to make tiling and marquetry for use in furniture design and architecture.

There are 62 different strands of corn in Mexico, each with a different shape, taste and colour which also extends to their husks.

Tototmoxtle was done in collaboration with Zapotec and Mixteco communities in the Sierras of Oaxaca and Puebla in southwest Mexico.


Alexandra Fruhstorfer is from the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and her project is called Menu From the New Wild.

Her culinary concept aims to protect native biodiversity while also helping to get rid of invasive species.

In order to make this ecological issue accessible to a wide audience while simultaneously reducing the numbers of invasive species in the wilderness, the next step is to integrate them into the economic cycle by eating them.

Soup from the invasive Pond Slider Turtle and roasted Raccoon with shoots from Japanese Knotweed would appear on the menu of a near future.


Pulau Banda is a project by Marta Velasco Velasco from the Royal College of Arts.

She has always been fascinated by colonial history, cultural traditions and postcolonial traces.

A conversation with her brother about African Wax print and its Dutch-Indonesian origins, led to them discussing the history of nutmeg, the once highly valuable spice originating from the islands of Pulau Banda.

She uses textiles, photography and set design to share stories of colonialism and their aftermath with a goal of awakening people’s curiosity about colonial history and sparking a debate about its representations.


MIT student  Nicolas Kisic Aguirre’s project is called Modular Rhythm Machine. His interest lies in the power of sound not only for music but also as a weapon. He was especially inspired by the use of sound in rituals like marching, drumming and rhythm.

He designed the Modular Rhythm Machine as an instrument for researching and experimenting the power of sound and rhythm.

He has designed 36 modular machines, which can be arranged in different shapes and ways to produce sound.


Alissa Rees is a Design Academy Eindhoven graduate who will present her project called IV Walk, a portable IV-pole that stimulates mobility in hospitals.

It enhances the mobility of hospital patients on an IV-drip and helps create better mobility for them.

Her design was the winner of the innovation as well as best overall prize at the Brains Award 2017. The awards aim to create a better life through new knowledge


Myles Loftin is 19-year-old freelance photographer and a student at Parsons School of Design.

Some of the common themes covered in his work include the black family, racial profiling, black youth, and masculinity. 

The project he will be presenting is Hooded, a photo series and short film that speaks to the racial profiling of black men, especially those dressed in hoodies, due to their negative portrayals in the media.


Cargo is a project by Björn Steinar Blumenstein and Johanna Seelemann who are students at the Iceland Academy of the Arts.

Their project looks at engaging with the shipping trade based on aluminium and fish production in Iceland. 


Lucy Siyao Liu is a designer and lecturer from MIT. 

Although she works on topics in technology, digitality and computational methods, she is first and foremost concerned with transformative effects of these techniques on politics and poetics. Thus, her tools are constantly changing to stay coherent with her search.

She is the creator and editor of  PROPS, a weekly paper on images

The magnets allow users to hold up to 2.2 pounds. For objects that are not metal, Oliber comes with four metal plates that can be stuck to anything the user needs.


Billie Rehwald is an industrial design graduate from the University of Applied Arts in Vienna, Austria.

As an up-and-coming designer, Rehwald already looks back on a history of diverse projects, exhibitions, competitions and the prototypical precarious employment situations of a newcomer in the industry.

With her project, Ectogenesis, she is exploring human-made gender disparities and biological differences of the sexes, using design as a tool to overcome both artificial and biological borders. 

Asylum seekers are not allowed to work in the Netherlands but, by taking advantage of a loophole in a freedom of the press law, refugees are allowed to sell printed goods in a public space.

In a project called Printed Matters, the Dutch designer created portraits of refugees who then sell their prints, blurring the lines of labour and art.


Renata Souza Luque is a product design graduate from the Parsons School of Design. Her project Thomy was inspired by her nephew Thomas, who was diagnosed with diabetes. Renata designed a colourful syringe and a carry pack that also includes washable tattoos in order to make it easier for children with diabetes to inject themselves.

Thomy is a United States national finalist in the James Dyson Award 2017 and is still in the running for the international prize.


Caroline Smeenk is a user experience researcher who recently graduated from the Carleton University School of Industrial Design.

Her bachelor thesis project, a system to aid in the home monitoring of the symptoms of preeclampsia, highlights the balance of research, experience, and design that drive her process. 

She will be presenting her project, Maternal Home Care, which looks at making home care for low-income pregnant women less intrusive. 


Iwo Borkowicz is a young architect who obtained his masters in architecture at KU Leuven in Belgium.

He is passionate about local identities, pattern recognition, sensitive materiality and resilient architecture that is grounded in and debating with the place it’s made for.

He will be presenting his project called A Symbiotic Relation of Cooperative Social Housing and Dispersed Tourism in Havana.

The project looks at how to upgrade buildings while also allowing the same space to bring in money for low-income residents through tourism. 


Kazuya Kawasaki is a trans-disciplinary fashion designer working in fields such as biotech fashion, wearable tech and computational fashion.  

He will be talking about his latest project which looks at using pigment from living organisms to help make better garments, this way bridging the gap between fashion and emerging technologies like biotechnology and wearable technology.


Kelsey Wakefield is an interactive landscape architect and urban designer who graduated from Rhode Island School of Design. 

Raised in a petroleum-centric town in Alaska, Wakefield is no stranger to being caught between resistance to energy market changes and the call for sustainable action. 

Her project investigates the sources of the energy we use in our cities and homes and aims to engage the public with generation methods through interactive public spaces.


Antenna aims to take these young designers to the next phase of their careers by exposing them to experts and professionals in the antenna network. The programme, above and beyond their presentations, will work to expand their skills and networks, opening up a range of future opportunities. Like the antennae of the natural world, antenna aims to intuitively spot and react to the subtle signs in the world around us. The third edition of antenna will take place at Dutch Design Week on 21 October.

 Tickets for the 2019 iteration are available now.

Credits: Design Indaba