United We: Conditional Design

Back to mainpage United We: click here

Conditional Design is the result of what began in 2008 with impromptu meetings on Tuesday nights between Edo Paulus, Jonathan Puckey, Roel Wouters and Luna Maurer, around the latter's kitchen table.

The Amsterdam based artist and designers, were looking for ways to avoid being defined by the media they worked with. Media are a common, yet restricting way of describing design- and artistic projects and practices.

Instead, they decided to search for a new term and definition that sufficiently described their way of working. The collective formulated a Manifesto, the Conditional Design Manifesto, in which they stated their shared views about design and art. Rather than operating under the terms Graphic Design, Interaction Design, Media Art or Sound Design, they introduced the term Conditional Design: foregrounding the approach, instead of the medium of choice.

Conditional Design
is an approach that reflects the tendencies of our contemporary society - under the influence of the media and rapid technological developments, our world, our lives and the way we interact with each other are increasingly characterized by speed and in a state of constant flux.

In order to reflect the here and now, the members of Conditional Design adapt their methods to coincide with these developments focussing on processes rather than products, allowing their work to adapt to their respective environments, emphasize change and display differences. Key notions within the manifesto are "The input is our Material", "Logic is our Tool" & "The process is the Product".

Maurer, Paulus, Puckey and Wouters organised weekly mini workshops that lasted between 1 and 3 hours during which they would set to work together with just a sheet of paper, a couple of pens or other materials and a few simple rules one of them had formulated beforehand to guide them. During their workshops they have explored The Perfect Circle, 4 Long Lines as well as The Beach for instance, each drawing following it's own specific set of rules.

This spring Valiz, book and cultural projects will publish the Conditional Design Workbook.