As Kaunas’ journey towards the modern capital accelerates, the “Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022”, “Designing Happiness” programme presents a new, debut event in the city – Kaunas DESIGN festival. On 23–31 October in Kaunas, which belongs to the UNESCO Creative Cities Network, the focus of the ongoing events will shift to the design mission in various aspects from beauty and convenience to the scientific prototyping of the future vision. What is good design in the city, what is the mission of design in creating the city of the future, do the citizens feel the added value of design? This series of week-long events – lectures, discussions, exhibitions – will aim to discuss these and other issues, to get acquainted with good practices of the country and foreign cities, as well as specific design examples.

“Cities are changing rapidly. Depending on the circumstances, perceptions of the possible future scenarios also change: from the idea of a global village to a return to the primal forms of collective cohabitation. Today, faced with the reality of the pandemic, we have noticed that the city can also become a place of dramatic exclusion, and the need for safe and harmonious spaces accessible to different groups of society is extremely desired. Design as an event in the city will seek to discover that in this context design that connects art, culture, industries, and technologies possesses a great power not only to function as a creator of beauty and convenience but also to address social issues or meet the needs of a future city”, says Dr Jūratė Tutlytė, curator of the “Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022”, “Designing Happiness” programme.

During Kaunas DESIGN festival, an exhibition of design artifacts “Fantasy of Pandemic” will be held in the most unexpected and at the same time the most mundane spaces of the city, designed to reflect the fruits of creative imagination created during the pandemic period: design solutions for emergencies, creative responses to quarantine restrictions. “Fantasy of Pandemic” will allow you to face a new and inspiring reality created by design practitioners and visioners from France, Germany, the Netherlands, Lithuania, and other countries.

How do we plan cities today so that we can live comfortably in them tomorrow and will we preserve personal space when digitisation radically alters our way of life and what the physical environment of living will look like? The answers to those questions will be sought in another part of the Kaunas DESIGN festival programme – the scientific prototype workshop, where participants will be learning to create the future visions of science, Kaunas city, and business using the Science Fiction Prototyping method. The workshop will be conducted by Doctor in Biology Rolandas Maskoliūnas, together with guests from the UK.

The full programme of Kaunas DESIGN festival – discussions, workshops, interviews, and exhibitions – can be found here.

 

Photo by „Physx“, Cosimo Scotucci (Italy)