After school,
  The Campus keeps on networking

At the Design Campus, we believe in the power of design to effect radical and far-reaching change, even if incremental. And we truly believe that design--and designers--have a central role and responsibility in building a better world. We exist to support and promote this idea.


Our summers at the Design Campus are dedicated to the School of Utopias. During 6-weeks each summer, we gather in Pillnitz to dream big, reorient our practice, and recalibrate in tandem with other like-minded colleagues to explore pressing issues of our time. The program of hands-on workshops, talks and visits is steered by a selected design visionary. Each year we choose a different Head of School and topic for the Summer School. Together with the 2022 Heads of School, Formafantasma, we tackled materiality from all its angles and corners: from material histories, cultural world-views, the relationship between tradition and local culture, critical approaches to ecology, colonialism, extractivism, to the relation between human and non-human and the significance of objects as cultural conduits.

We could not be happier with the achievements and engagement of the fantastic group of over 80 participants, tutors and lecturers from all over the world who gathered here this year! The Summer School is over, but the Design Campus carries on!

The Network is one of the strongest pillars of the Design Campus. We strive to create a network of people and institutions that value design's importance, capability and ingenuity. We are proud to collaborate with the German Design Graduates, an initiative to promote young product design graduates and present state-recognised universities, art colleges and universities of applied sciences. The Design Campus has awarded scholarships to young talented designers to join the Summer School since its very beginning! Furthermore, we are proud to host the German Design Graduates’ yearly show in Dresden this year, for the first time ever out of Berlin!


In October, the museum will showcase outstanding product and industrial design graduates from Germany’s most prestigious higher education institutions. There will be an award ceremony and a series of talks too. The awards ceremony will take place during the exhibition opening, as will the GDG Talks, which will focus on the expectations of young designers. We are happy to announce that the highly influential design critic and author of Design as an Attitude and Hello World: Where Design Meets Life, and co-founder Design Emergency, Alice Rawsthorn, will make her way to the Design Campus as the keynote speaker of the GDG Talks.


Further highlight includes the exhibition Spoon Archaeology. The exhibition started as a Design Campus Lab project and became the German design contribution to the London Design Biennial. This will be the last chance to see it in Dresden before the museum closes its gates for the annual winter break.


We look forward to an inspiring opening weekend and your visit here in Pillnitz!

-- Thomas and Aline

-- Thomas A. Geisler
Design Campus and Kunstgewerbemuseum Director
-- Aline Lara Rezende, Editor and
Design Campus Chief Knowledge and Impact Officer

    ©German Design Graduates

NETWORK: German Design Graduates Show + Award Ceremony

The German Design Graduates Show 2022 is dedicated to the central issues of our time under the influence of the serious changes and developments in politics, society and the environment. It shows the most interesting ideas and approaches of young product design talents. Featuring the creations of around 40 outstanding young graduates from more than 20 German design and art colleges, the exhibition illustrates how product design can go hand in hand with social, societal and ecological responsibility.

The exhibition at the Riverside Palace is open from October 2nd to 31st from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m (Mondays closed). It was developed by the Initiative German Design Graduates and its project sponsor, the German Design Council, in cooperation with the Design Campus of the Kunstgewerbemuseum of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden (SKD).

Selected by a top-class jury, four young designers' prizes will be awarded to innovative projects presented in the exhibition at a gala in Pillnitz Palace the day before. From October 2nd onwards, the show will be open to the public.

   ©German Design Graduates

NETWORK: GDG Talks – Perspectives for Graduates in Product Design
Keynote Speaker, Alice Rawsthor

Join us on October 2nd for a series of talks focused on the expectations of young product and industrial designers.

The talks will tackle topics such as regional identity and global strategies; the connection and transfer of design research and practice, sustainable constellations of manufacturers, researchers and developers, and the role of doctoral studies in design Education; challenges and opportunities of participatory design.

Speakers include:

Prof. Mark Braun (Product Designer), Rainer Schilling (Managing Director Berliner Blau, subsidiary Nomos Glashütte), Dr. Andrea Augsten (Design Research), Dipl. Des. Jens Hoyer (Head of Design Strategy & Pre Development, BSH Hausgeräte GmbH, Siemens brand), Stephan Ott (Head of Institute for Design Research and Appliance), Mona Mijthab (Mosan), Prof. Ineke Hans (Design & Social Context), Thomas A. Geisler (Director Design Campus / Kunstgewerbemuseum Dresden), etc.


A special highlight is the keynote talk, DESIGN EMERGENCY - Building a Better Future:

A talk by Alice Rawsthorn about visionary designers whose innovation and ingenuity give us hope for the future by redesigning and reshaping our lives so we can thrive. Through four themes – technology, society, communication, and ecology – Alice Rawsthorn presents a unique portrait of how our great creative minds are developing new design solutions to the great challenges of our time, while helping us benefit from advances in science and technology.


We are looking forward to an exciting networking event with young talents, representatives from culture, industry and academia at the Design Campus in the Pillnitz Palace. The program will take place at Pillnitz Palace & Park locations. For our planning and due to limited seats, we ask you to register for the event.



Sunday, October 2nd, 11-15 h, Hillside Palace Main Hall, PillnitzRegistration via


   Summer School Inaugeration Lecture by Simone Farresin / Formafantasma ©Felix Meutzner, SKD

SCHOOL: Summer Recap

From July 16th to August 27th, we hosted more than 80 participants, 12 tutors and many lecturers from around the world in Pillnitz for the Summer School! After a pandemic, we were pleased to meet again in person for six intense weeks of discussions, hands-on design workshops, picnics and disco nights at the Design Campus. Each year the School has a different Head of School and topic of exploration. Discover the big ideas behind “The School of the Untold”, this year’s Summer School’s concept, in the inaugural lecture by the Class 2022 Heads of School, Formafantasma.


Spoon Archaeology ©Clemens Renner

LAB/ MUSEUM: Spoon Archaeology

The German contribution to the last London Design Biennale resulted from a Design Campus Lab project. Curated by Thomas A. Geisler in collaboration with the Frankfurt-based designers Peter Eckart and Kai Linke, the exhibition Spoon Archaeology presented a vast collection of plastic spoons as archaeological remnants and asked how design can contribute to a more sustainable use of resources.

The Spoon Archaeology exhibition is a reaction to the EU ban on single-use tableware. Disposable plastic cutlery is a symbol of the global throwaway culture. It has been banned since July 3, 2021. The Lab project and exhibition "Spoon Archaeology" at Kunstgewerbemuseum reflect on this topic.

Spoon Archaeology will close soon, on October 31st.

Last chance to see the exhibition in Dresden.


Recommended Reading:

In case you cannot make it to the museum and wants to know more about the Spoon Archaeology project and exhibition, here are a few links from the Voices magazine, the new digital magazine, and the curated digital platform from the SKD:

What’s Being Left by the Fast-Food Culture

With or Without a Spoon

Spoon Archaeology Meets Lunch for Locals


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