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design for survival


May 23, 2011
Design for Survival Workshops
In the Spring of 2010 I conducted the first of a series of Survival design workshops at Texas A&M. Students were asked to develop rapid design responses following significant disasters. These workshops dealt with limited resources and the need to reevaluate the potential of everyday objects commonly found in one’s proximate surroundings.
Two Survival Workshops were organized: the first “16 Ways to Survive Objects” was focused on the scale of the body (sleeping bags made from dryer lint, eyeglass frames made out of found scrap, solar kits for sterilizing surgery tools made from pizza boxes). The design for the “Duct Tape Shoe”— low-cost footwear easily and rapidly hand manufactured with universally available duct tape—was selected for presentation at the Milan Design Fair in April 2010.
The second “12 Ways to Survive Shelters” workshop stimulated a number of approaches to developing immediate solutions that could assist individuals and families in their effort to regain the basic means for collective recovery (school buses converted into mobile classrooms, campers adapted into mobile medical units, commonly found materials that could be transformed into building insulation). The project “Stitch” consisted of a portable fully stocked tailor shop designed to provide the means to produce clothing locally stimulating micro-economies in the process.
The goal for these Survival workshops was to achieve rapid yet sustainable results, by assembling objects or shelters from the immediate local environment using whatever materials could be found readily available. These workshops can serve as models for emergency on-site relief efforts geared to kick-start local recovery.

Competition Details

  • Name: Dwell on Design Open Mic in LA - Call for Submissions
  • Host: Architecture for Humanity
  • Type: Public
  • Registration Deadline: May 25, 2011
  • Submission Deadline: May 25, 2011
  • Entry Fee: Free
  • Award: The opportunity to present at Dwell on Design in Los Angeles, CA on June 25, 2011 (must arrange own transportation/lodging)
  • Status: Active

The competition entry ID for this project is 9756.

Project Details

NAME: design for survival
PROJECT LEAD: peter lang
LOCATION: Unspecified location
START DATE: January 18, 2010
CURRENT PHASE: Design development
PROJECT TYPE: Temporary Shelter


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