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Sunday, 29 March 2015 22:00

Design Week gets its second wind: Events highlight West Michigan’s unique design community

Written by  Jill Hinton
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Conceived two years ago as a car full of designers traveled back to West Michigan from a trade show, West Michigan Design Week is back for its second iteration. The weeklong series of events, which runs from Monday, April 6 through Saturday, April 11, features a variety of talks, exhibits and networking events.

“The idea behind it is to dedicate a week in West Michigan to design, in all its forms,” says Ken Krayer, interim executive director at Design West Michigan, one of the event’s organizers.

This year’s presenters include:

  • Keynote speaker Dr. Hugh Herr, director of the biomechatronics group at the MIT Media Lab. He’ll be speaking at 6 p.m., Monday, April 6 at the Grand Rapids Civic Theatre on Division Avenue in Grand Rapids. Herr, a biomechanics expert, lost his legs in a mountaineering accident and went on to engineer the next generation of bionic limbs, which are robotic prosthetics inspired by nature’s own designs. Cost is $10.
  • Kendall College of Art and Design’s “pop-up” talk with Tucker Viemeister will be held at 4 p.m., Tuesday, April 7 at the college’s Woodbridge N. Ferris Building, Room 217. Called “industrial design’s elder wunderkind” by ID magazine, Viemeister holds 32 United States utility patents and currently leads Viemeister Industries in New York.
  • Liz Sanders, the founder of MakeTools, will be speaking on human-centered design and other topics at 6 p.m., Friday, April 10. Her talk will also be held at Kendall College’s Woodbridge N. Ferris Building, Room 217.

Design Week will also feature lunchtime architectural tours at the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Meyer May house from April 6-10, a special curated exhibit called “Look Behind Design” at the Harris building on Division Avenue, as well as an AIGA “Pop Up Shop” that features local designers exhibiting their work. All events open to the public. Visit
wmdesignweek.com for details.

Read 1755 times Last modified on Monday, 30 March 2015 15:47

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