Design Week 2020

March 2-6, 2020


This week long lecture + workshop series will examine new possibilities for change within design. We aim to construct a different kind of design agenda, with different players, new discoveries, discursive practices and ways to collaborate + come together across conventional boundaries. We will celebrate the work of those who have initiated new methodologies, are constructing new accesses to power and are committed to building a world that is bravely different through profound and practical action.

Design Week 2020 Poster

Searchable schedule with links below

Colorado College welcomes participants with disabilities. Please contact Jan Edwards, 719-227-8294 or by email at, to request accommodations. Advance notice may be necessary to arrange for some accessibility needs.

Design Week 2020

Mon, March 02 | Tues, March 03 | Wed, March 04 | Thur, March 05 | Fri, March 06 | Related Activities

Monday, March 02

12:15 PM
Film and Lunch
Packard Hall 132

Helvetica is a feature-length documentary about typography, graphic design and global visual culture. It looks at the proliferation of one typeface as part of a larger conversation about the way type affects our lives. 80 min. 2007

3:30 PM
Talk: Lillian Makeda
Representing Navajo Cultural Identity in Architecture
Cornerstone Screening Room 131

The Navajo (or Diné) hogan is one of a small number of traditional Native American dwellings still in use during the 21st century. Part of the reason for the hogan's persistence has been the widespread adoption of a particular form, the tsin bee hooghan-a polygonally-shaped, horizontally-laid-log hogan. This illustrated talk will discuss the emergence of the tsin bee hooghan as a Diné icon during the period between 1890 and 1950 and suggest that Euro-American representations of Diné culture played a role in popularizing the form. These representations could be found within ethnological villages at world's fairs and at tourist destinations in the Southwest from the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition onward. During the same period, several Euro-American groups interested in Indian reform targeted Native American architecture as a source of paganism and disease. These groups sought to "improve" the hogan and in the process, helped to speed the decline of older forms that were dissimilar to contemporary Euro-American architecture.

In the 1920s, a compromise began to emerge among Native American reform groups that deemed the hogan as an acceptable form of housing while viewing it as in need of an improving hand. With the appointment of John Collier as federal Indian commissioner in 1933, the federal Office of Indian Affairs instituted a number of programs that built model hogans-masonry versions of the tsin bee hooghan-that were intended for the Diné to emulate. At the same time, Native American and Euro-American roadside entrepreneurs began building examples of the tsin bee hooghan in the form of shops, motels, and other facilities based on hogan architecture. During the 1930s, ventures like Johnny's Navajo Hogan in Colorado Springs could be found across the Four Corners' region and by midcentury the tsin bee hooghan had become established as a "trademark of the Navajos."

Tuesday, March 03

12:15 PM
Lunch and Talk: Allison Milham
Intersections in Book Arts: Identity, Place & the Power of Stories
Tutt Library Event Space 201

Artist Allison Leialoha Milham will speak about her interdisciplinary work in printing, book arts, music and activism. Milham is an educator, artist and songwriter of Native Hawaiian descent, and a visiting professor at The Press at CC, teaching book arts and letterpress printing. She holds a BFA in Studio Art from San Francisco State University and an MFA in Book Arts from the University of Alabama. Her award-winning, hand-printed and bound project, Uluhaimalama - Legacies of Lili'uokalani, is an immersive and layered work which uses her own renditions of Queen Lili'uokalani's compositions as a lens to explore Hawai'i's political history and contemporary struggles for sovereignty. Milham's work is held in multiple public collections including The Library of Congress, Bainbridge Island Museum of Art and Yale University Arts Library.

3:30 PM
Talk: Peter Oyler
Evolving Praxis/Practice
Cornerstone 131

In this presentation, Oyler will elaborate the ways in which his design practice explores the intersection of design, craft, contemporary culture, and history and emphasizes both traditional and experimental approaches to production. Motivated by the vast possibilities of a wide range of materials, diverse scales of production, and our ever-evolving relationship to both analog and digital modes of making, Oyler will discuss how ideas of scale, proportion, and of immersive studio practice central to his foundational works have paved the way for his current design projects and collaborations all the while illuminating the role of the designer as a unique cultural interlocutor.

Wednesday, March 04

12:15 PM
Lunch and Talk: Thomas Gardner
Making Manifest: Love / Grit / Action
Tutt Library Event Space 201

In recent years, design + build has re-emerged in architectural education as a way to collaborate toward sustainable solutions: Through design, product development and construction, students and professionals from many fields work together to respond to a variety of problems. A model that remains rich in possibility, the contemporary design + build studio combines the potential of teaching, research, practice, and development. This lecture will describe a migration from traditional studio practice of bespoke architecture to the creative act of teaching design and building for under-served populations, and will illustrate how design + build's new presence in high school and university curricula is a teaching and research model enabling students to take responsibility for developing future built environments.

7 PM
Cornerstone Screening Room 131

Urbanized is a feature-length documentary about the design of cities, which looks at the issues and strategies behind urban design and features some of the world's foremost architects, planners, policymakers, builders, and thinkers. 85 min. 2011.

Thursday, March 05

12:15 PM
KVA Architecture
Body Geometries: A Workshop of Serious Play
Cornerstone Room 308

This workshop will explore the creation of large play-full, action-based drawings, using paint. Here, students can experience and investigate painting differently, with gestures made by the organized action of their own bodies-but not their hands-and recorded in paint. By de-skilling the art of painting and being play-full students will work in teams to create large prosthetic 'brushes' that can produce different kinds of marks when attached to an elbow, leg or other part of their body. Through a series of quick exercises, students will play with corporeal mark making on large sheets of paper-vertical and horizontal. Students will photograph their corporeal paintings and present an analysis of the underlying unfamiliar corporeal gestures and geometries produced by the body as a record of an action over time.

Drawing upon the 1960's social game of "Twister", the actions of balance and imbalance in daily life and the work of the French conceptual artist Yves Klein, the workshop offers messy play with paint as a way of making and describing non-euclidian corporeal geometries.

5-6:30 PM
Roundtable Discussion
Design | Agent for Change
Cornerstone Main Space

In this moderated panel, invited guests will discuss the overarching theme of Design Week 2020, exploring the possibilities for change within design.

The panelists will include:

Sheila Kennedy + Frano Violich of KVA architects

Thomas Gardner, Professor of Social Design at MICA and co-founder of HousingOperative, a design-build agency based in Detroit and dedicated to the realization of architecture for social and cultural change.

Emily Arden Wells + Zac Stevens of Move Matter

Friday, March 06

12:15 PM
Art Department Open House (Brown Bag)
Packard Hall 131

Wrap up Design Week by attending the Art Department Open House! Bring your lunch and learn more about the Art Department design programs and ways to get involved with design. Art Department faculty, students, and a representative from the CC Advising Hub will be available. We will also share portfolios from alumni who have gone on to graduate school and careers in design.

Related Activities

Thesis Exhibitions
Coburn Gallery, Worner
Packard Hallway

Design Week 2020 is sponsored by the Art Department and the Conway Family Design Research Fund

For additional event information, please contact:

For directions or disability accommodations, call 719-389-6607.

Report an issue - Last updated: 12/17/2020