7. Design Camp: Arts Reverie, Ahmedabad, India (2007)
The Design Camp model is based on a commitment to the development of local economies of practice. It is seeking to support the preservation of traditional skills and their application to processes and products for national and international markets.
The Camp gives an opportunity for international designers to develop their own creative practices, explore the potential for the manufacture of product in India and set up trading agreements based on ethical principles.
For the 2007 programme, four artists, designers and designer-makers from the UK spent 21 days working together in Ahmedabad. The artists were based at Arts Reverie and the House of MG. Project managers facilitated an interface with local crafts workers and artisans, with whom the visitors worked individually and as a group. The Project also facilitated introductions and working relationships with other design studios, artists and designers active in the city along with NGO’s, development agencies, promoters and industry contacts.
The group of designers were asked to research and develop design ideas and manufacturing processes for innovative products that related directly to their cultural, environmental and aesthetic context. The designs were developed through a process of collaboration ensuring that they were consistent with and sensitive to the use of materials, technology and ways of working, to support sustainable production.
Within the research process, that will continue beyond the Camp itself, the designers work with the project managers and project partners to explore market potential, distribution and routes to markets for the resulting product.
It was recognsied that the ambitions for this research project are high and that it is only possible to achieve limited direct product outcomes within the three weeks of the Camp. All participants in the project, the designers, the producers, project managers and support agencies will be committed to following through on viable proposals.