To Hell with Good Intentions
Why design won’t save the world
Design has a long and sad history of complicity. It makes things beautiful, new and desirable and thus contributes to consumer frenzy and increasing pollution of land, water and air. It attracts with user-friendliness and helps to violate data protection regulations and personal rights. It promises solutions to whatever problem and claims to make the world a better place. Better for who? And what’s better? Often too little is given to this.
As a mediator between people and their environment, design has to say goodbye to its self-image as a problem solver. Rather, it has the task of conveying complexity so that we can find our way around the world and with the world. Will everything be fine then? Probably not. Because there is no such thing as black and white.
On Amelie Klein
Amelie Klein is an independent Viennese design curator, writer and critic. Most recently, she opened an exhibition at the Museum für Kunst & Gewerbe in Hamburg, Germany, titled Heimaten – Eine Ausstellung und Umfrage. This summer, she also co-curated the first iteration of the Design Campus School at the Kunstgewerbemuseum in Dresden / Pillnitz dedicated to Design & Democracy.
Until July 2019, she worked at the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein, Germany, where she was responsible for several international traveling exhibition such as Victor Papanek: The Politics of Design, Hello, Robot. Design between Human and Machine and Making Africa — A Continent of Contemporary Design.
Klein was nominated twice for the German art magazine’s Curator Prize, an award granted for the best exhibition in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. She completed an MFA in Design Criticism at New York’s School of Visual Arts as well as an MBA at the Vienna University of Economics and Business, Austria. For more than ten years, Klein worked as an editor and journalist publishing amongst others in the Austrian daily Die Presse and magazines such as Abitare and Metropolis.
As guest of UdK-Berlin’s project group Design & Social Context Amelie Klein will speak in the Kunstgewerbemuseum in Berlin where she will reflect on design and society today, where themes like new design strategies & politics, sustainability, identity and sense of belonging are topical and also so reflected in the German Design Graduates exhibition 2019/20 – 2020/21.
Amelie’s talk is therefore part of the talks program of German Design Graduates that was initiated by prof. Ineke Hans and is open for students and the general public.
Seats are limited and there are corona rules
but you can use THIS LINK to make a reservation
(in trouble send a mail to
Date: Sunday 10 October, 13:00 hrs
Venue: Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin
read more on Amelie and the exhibitions she made HERE and below
Making Africa – A Continent of Contemporary Design
The Politics of Design