UF Design Professors Gaby Hernández and María Rogal, along with Rául Sánchez of UF’s Department of English, led an international group of designers and design educators in a conversation titled “Transforming Design: Indigeneity and Mestizaje in Latin America.” The conversation took place on 27 June 2018 at the Design Research Society (DRS) Biennial Conference, held at the University of Limerick. The participants discussed ways to reconceive design theory, research, practice, and education in order to level the field on which non-Western perspectives on design can encounter and question the discipline’s traditional ways of knowing. Hernández, Rogal, and Sánchez are currently examining key outcomes of this conversation and preparing them for later publication by the DRS. The resulting paper will contribute to the ongoing conversation on decoloniality that is taking place in the discipline’s progressive quarters. Hernández, Rogal, and Sánchez are affiliate faculty in the Center of Latin American Studies.
I recently attended the Design Incubation Fellowship in NYC. It was one of the most relevant, informative, and inspiring professional experiences of my life and certainly the best recently. There were many things that made this great. Here are a few:
As a field, we need more of this. And we need to make sure we can provide this type of experience early to faculty and to our graduate students. The many people who made this possible, including Aaris Sherin, Dan Wong, Robin Landa, Maggie Taft, Elizabeth Guffey, and Liz DeLuna
In 2010, students in Technologies and Processes collaborated with NGO Impala Development Services (Swaziland) to create a name, identity, and packaging for Moringa Powder to be sold in Swaziland and South Africa. The moringa tree is fast growing and drought resistant and has the added value that its leaves are protein-rich. Thus, the powder—which can be added to all types of food—provides a rich and low-cost source of protein for malnourished children and is especially beneficial to those with HIV AIDS. Swaziland has a high rate of child malnutrition, due in part because they have the highest per capita HIV AIDS rate in Africa. Students worked in groups of 4–5 to develop 3 proposals.
I stumbled on the bio of Anna Children Atkins, a 19th century botanist, artist, and photographer. She may very well have been the first female photographer and is noted for publishing the first book illustrated with photographs. According to Wikipedia,
… she self-published her photograms in the first installment ofPhotographs of British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions in October 1843. Although privately published, with a limited number of copies, and with handwritten text, This book is considered the first book illustrated with photographic images. 
Read more about Anna Atkins on Wikipedia.
 Parr, Martin; Gerry Badger (2004). The photobook, a history, Volume I. London: Phaidon. ISBN 0-7148-4285-0.
This image is in the public domain because its copyright has expired. This applies to Australia, the European Union and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 70 years.
Project: An intercultural calendar that comparatively presents Wixárika and western concepts of time. The design solution visually documents one Wixárika community’s (San Miguel Huaixtita, Jalisco, México) oral tradition of time in the community’s own words.
Background: Westernized Mexicans in central Mexico know little about the Wixárika (commonly called Huichol) culture. Once common misconception or misunderstanding is in relationship to time. For example, many Wixárika must return to their community during the summer to plant, yet find it difficult to leave a 40-hour per week job in a city because others perceive their actions as unnecessary or frivolous. We considered how to use communication and design methodologies to teach Mexican youth concepts central to the Wixárika community (“others” in this region).
Funding: Universidad de Guadalajara Cátedra de Biodiversidad, UF Center for Latin American Studies and School of Art & Art History, CONACYT
Since this summer I’ve been working with the United Faculty of Florida–UF to develop a more professional presence. The tangible materials with our identity is coming together nicely. The major work has been to the website and the the newsletter. My goal is to make a relatively sustainable system and we’re on our way.
A new book by Vijay Kumar Design Professor at IIT.
Unlike other books on the subject, 101 Design Methods approaches the practice of creating new products, services, and customer experiences as a science, rather than an art, providing a practical set of collaborative tools and methods for planning and defining successful new offerings. Strategists, managers, designers, and researchers who undertake the challenge of innovation, despite a lack of established procedures and a high risk of failure, will find this an invaluable resource. Novices can learn from it; managers can plan with it; and practitioners of innovation can improve the quality of their work by referring to it.
digital collages, inkjet on canvas, 2005, 18″ x 18″
Mexico is a hybrid culture, a post colonial manifestation. My objective in this project is to confront the accepted stereotypes of Mexico through spatial and temporal juxtapositions of visual and textual icons of diverse ethnic, class, and regional origins.
These works are represented in installation of collages, photographs, and reductive vernacular typography, or stand on their own.
Soy diseñadora, investigadora y profesora de diseño gráfico en la Universidad de la Florida, EEUU. En investigación mi principal línea de acción es a través de la iniciativaDiseño para el Desarrollo (D4D), en la cual co-diseña con otros diseñadores, alumnos, y expertos, ideando proyectos sustentables de comercio justo con emprendedores Mayas en Yucatán, México. He presentado los resultados en numerosos congresos como MX Diseño: Impacto Social de Diseño y Academia Europea de Diseño. He publicado en Routledge Handbook of Sustainable Design (2018) y la revista Latin American and Caribbean Ethnic Studies Journal, entre otros. Contribuyó al Manifiesto Internacional de Educación en Diseño (ICO-D). Mi obra creativa ha sido exhibida internacionalmente, en lugares como Reino Unido, Hungría, Cuba, Venezuela, México, y los EEUU.
I am a designer, researcher, and professor of graphic design at the University of Florida. My work focuses on the social, cultural, and political aspects of design, especially as these relate to globalization and decoloniality. This also extends to ways we can use design processes and strategies to address wicked problems. I have two research projects 1) Design for Development (D4D) initiative, in which I and my students partner with Maya artisan-entrepreneurs to develop, brand, and market their products and 2) the Mira Project, in which I explore the visual representation of Mexican-ness through creative work and writing.
Professor of Graphic Design
School of Art + Art History
University of Florida
101 Fine Arts C
Gainesville, FL 32611–5801
T 352 273 3080
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