The ethics of Graphic Design?
A public research seminar with the participation of Ken Garland, Richard Hollis, Silvia Sfligiotti, Annelies Vaneycken and Annelys de Vet.
The process of translating messages into images or facilitating visual communication is an activity that involves responsibility towards the public on the side of the author. Even when occupied with commercials, corporate identity, or other so-called non-political goals, designers are actually making decisions towards the preservation and reinforcement of social and cultural assumptions. Since the days of the Modern Movement there has been a great deal of debate on questions as to who the actual clients are and who should take part to the negotiation process from which design emerges. A few years ago when the Helvetica typeface, one of the icons of the modernist search for the standard, celebrated its fiftieth anniversary, these questions were revived, this time without attempts to agree on a set of rules. This seminar draws on these questions, which developed alongside the whole history of the graphic design profession, and explores notions as design ethics, social commitment and public role of the designer.
16 March 2011, 5.30pm
University College London, London