Mar 21, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Cape Town’s Creative Class

There’s nothing more inspiring–and encouraging!– than municipal support for creatives. Cape Town’s world class creative scene is a testimonial to the efforts of municipal leaders united with the arts/crafts communities. Read on for the latest event in the Western Cape of South Africa.

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Mar 15, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Erin Moore: The journey to Balistan

Hello again! So, we’ve got 9 days left to make this project a reality, and I’m working hard to pull some loose ends together to make this happen! If you know of anyone else who would be excited to support this work, please show them the green button and bring them along!

In the meantime, several updates ago, I began telling you about the tumultuous history of Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan and how it starts to relate to the work I will be doing… Here’s the next installment in the continuing story:

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Mar 6, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lightspeed and the Human Hand, No. 3

Jonathan Arena explores art, craft and design in Japan: Entry # 3


Richard Sennett, author of the lauded book The Craftsman, teaches that “machine systems break down when they don’t work in an explicit manner, whereas people make discoveries”.  It seems slightly ironic then, that the most ubiquitous tool for design today is the computer, singularly capable of providing direct experience through sight. There is a loss of the sensitivity that came from detailed handwork that was required by graphic designers twenty years ago, before computers.

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Feb 19, 2011
Zelda Harrison

XCD supports Kickstart

XCD contributor Erin Moore is on a 30-day quest to fulfill her dream.

I am a designer and I think a lot about exploration – not just about going somewhere new and pitching a tent in places with unfamiliar names – but also about finding ways to get to know people and the kind of lives they lead. In a digital world that allows us easy and instant access to people from around the globe, cultural exploration and understanding is as important to us now as geographical exploration and understanding was to people like Roald Amundsen and Lewis and Clark.

I wonder how we can connect, discover and bridge our own experiences with experiences of people who live in different places around the world.

The purpose of my project is to provide access to relevant information about people and ways of life in parts of the world that are hard to reach. For designers, my hope is that the information gathered from this work can be used as a starting point to further inspire and influence projects that lie at the intersection of design, technology and social entrepreneurship. For everyone else, I hope that my efforts will get them excited about exploring and encourage them to investigate and ask questions about the world they live in.

In an effort to create these authentic connections between people living in different parts of the world, I will provide an insider’s look into the lives of people living in Northern Pakistan. Their stories will be documented online so that others can connect with and learn from their perspectives.

XCD is very excited about Erin’s proposal and has pledged our support. Visit Erin’s Kickstart page for more information about or check out her previous post for her perspectives on crosscultural design
Feb 7, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lightspeed and the Human Hand, No. 2

Jonathan Arena explores art, craft and design in Japan: Entry # 2

The United States experiences Japan, in large part, through its design culture — from ancient ceramic traditions and minimalist architecture, to today’s high-tech gaming, fashion, and technologically driven lifestyle. Design is a traditional and necessary function of everyday life – fully ingrained into Japanese lifestyle. This is what makes design in Japan so dynamic, and allows creativity to permeate the society in a way that is unique to the Archipelago.
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Jan 30, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Happy New Year from XCD! 恭喜發財

Happy 2011!

As we cycle through the Fall and Winter, new beginnings come to mind…whether you celebrate Rosh Hashanah, Ras as-Sana, zhēng yuè or you track time by the Gregorian Calendar, it’s a great excuse to gather round food and drink, reflect upon the past with an eye to the future. Crack a smile when you check out the Season’s Greetings from XCD fans worldwide. Email us if you want to add your Good Cheer to the slideshow.

Jan 30, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lightspeed and the Human Hand

Jonathan Arena explores art, craft and design in Japan: Entry # 1

Recently, I was given the opportunity to visit and work in Japan for a month. While I
was there, I began compiling photographs and writing to help satiate my interest in the
relationship between art, craft and design. These journal entries reflect that intent.
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Jan 17, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Diseño Shakespear tells the story of Icono

Like all good brands, Icono has a story to tell.

XCD would like to thank our contributor from Argentina, Diseño Shakespear, for this lyrical case study in branding.

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Jan 10, 2011
Zelda Harrison

Lessons Learned from Michael Bierut @ Pentagram

XCD caught up with Pentagram partner Michael Bierut in South Africa and picked his brain about Design. Here is a lively discussion about his experiences with New York City’s Library project.

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Oct 17, 2010
Zelda Harrison

Continuing Education 2010

Last year Maryam Hosseinnia shared her thoughts about inspiration and design during a 2-week workshop in Basel. This year, her adventures in recharging and expanding horizons take her to Den Haag in the Netherlands.

Click here to download Maryam’s report

Maryam Hosseinnia is the Program Lead and the full-time faculty at The American University of Kuwait. She has been working in Kuwait for four years.