Arts Thread

ARTSTHREAD


In advance of the deadline for Global Design Graduate Show 2021 in collaboration with Gucci, we interview Manon Lambeens, a 2021 graduating student from KASK School of Arts Ghent, MA Graphic Design. Our Global Design Graduate Show 2021 in collaboration with Gucci is open internationally to all art and design undergraduate or postgraduate students graduating in the Academic Year 2020-21 and the deadline to apply is August 31 2021.

ARTSTHREAD:Where are you currently based? Describe your workspace at home?

Manon Lambeens: I am from Leuven in Belgium. My workspace is my very small room at home. But it really depends on what I am doing, I can’t work just in one place. In my room I have a big computer screen so when I I'm working on photoshop I'm based there. But when I was doing all of my line drawings, I was in my living room, sometimes I sit in the kitchen. Most of my ideas come to me when I am walking or running outside with some fresh air.

ARTSTHREAD: What is the name, theme, concept and final outcome of your graduate project?

Manon Lambeens:The name of my project is Het Sociale Spel (The Social Game). I always had an interest in social design and social projects. All my life I've been in a youth movement and loved to help and interact with different people, to find solutions with simple tools. The Social game is about play, participation, design tools, language, typography, education, lateral thinking.

First, I started in my own bubble and made a design program. I made line drawings based on the cadavre exquis technique and gave it a twist with a set of rules. You need to use a ruler, you can only draw four lines etc. Afterwards I thought, alright these drawings were a game but how can I as a designer use them?
The second part was a workshop I held with a friend of mine for children that were around 11 years old. It was about printing techniques. I gave the children design tools, stencils with basic Bauhaus-like shapes. I explained to them the structure of a letter and they made their own alphabet and graphic posters. Everybody can be creative if you give them the right tools.

The Final part was my project Tunneltaal. When I was at highschool there was a tunnel near my house, front of a school. As a young woman I never felt safe cycling through the tunnel at night. So I came with the idea, which my town ended up funding; during Belgium's lockdown, social contact with more than four people was basically illegal. We encouraged young people to visit the tunnel with their friends and write messages or draw, there were no rules or guidelines, and my own friends even came and helped me run the project. I think people were happy to do something with their friends. For the tunnel I made my own typeface: Borgfeld which was then made into stencils, which we then painted with glow in the dark paint. This scary tunnel is now lit up, with the words from people who live around it.

GDCS 2021 For the culmination of her graduate project: Tunneltaal, Manon transformed a public tunnel with the help of local school children's drawings and messages which were then enhanced with glow-in-the-dark paint.



ARTSTHREAD:Can you explain the thinking behind the key concepts and outcomes of your project?

Manon Lambeens: I think it is important to not put limits on your thinking. Try everything! Try something and if it doesn't work just try again. But if you never try something you will never know the potential of that idea. Accessibility was very important to me, which is why I provided people with simple instructions and easy-to-use tools, so everybody could participate. My sister teaches at school for children who have autism. After I did the first workshop, she asked me if I could do one for her students, that is what is important to me, to design a world that works for the many, not just a select few. A designer I looked up to, Cas Holman, said that when she was a kid, she always wondered why sinks were so high, adults could bend to reach them, but children can’t grow taller in one second. So why don’t we make these sinks accessible for everyone?

ARTSTHREAD: How have you adapted your work to online tutorials and showcases?

Manon Lambeens: Because my focus was mostly on physical and social contact not much of the project was done digitally. The whole year we were at home behind screens, I tried my very best to avoid working entirely online.

ARTSTHREAD: How has online learning changed your outcomes?

Manon Lambeens: Sometimes it was handy, being able to talk to my teachers without taking a train ride for two hours. But I missed the physical part. Especially with the seminars, we had them physically in the first weeks and afterwards they were online. They were so much better when they weren’t online.

ARTSTHREAD:Have you had to innovate when working by yourself at home?

Manon Lambeens: I think my family had to, I dragged them into all of my crazy ideas. But I don’t think they minded. I actually liked working at home with my friends and family.

GDCS 2021 Accessibility is at the core of Manon's work, she believes design can bridge a gap between people and find solutions to social issues.



ARTSTHREAD: What's one thing that has helped you get through the last year?

Manon Lambeens: I don’t like to dwell on the things that I didn’t do, instead I’m grateful about the things that I did. My friends and family who supported me, the fun nights with friends, I am happy about those things, the things I did have.

ARTSTHREAD:What are the most positive learning outcomes from this process?

Manon Lambeens: Really do what you love. People can feel it when something is done with real enthusiasm and passion. Don’t let your artistic ego get in the way, it scares people. Be yourself and interact with people from all backgrounds and disciplines, you don’t need to change the world by yourself.

ARTSTHREAD: How do you think design can help improve the world?

Manon Lambeens: I think Design is a bridge between different worlds and I see graphic designers as translators. I hope that design can change the way we communicate, find solutions for many people instead of the 1%. I’d like to see design go back to its roots where function is the first rule and not aesthetics. As we all know, form follows function. I think design can help with social issues but it is a tricky path and we as designers need to be brave enough to take it.

ARTSTHREAD: What are your hopes for the future?

Manon Lambeens: That I can have fun and party with my friends again. To give my vision of design to other people and that my projects can inspire everyone, not just other designers. That design will be back in the streets because then it’s accessible for everyone. The attitude of thinking differently, creatively can help others. Just play! Play my Social Game!

ARTSTHREAD: Thank you Manon - we wish you all the very best

Images in slider: Manon and her work

Our Global Design Graduate Show 2021 in collaboration with Gucci is open internationally to all art and design undergraduate or postgraduate students graduating in the Academic Year 2020-21 and the deadline to apply is August 31 2021.

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ARTSTHREAD


In advance of the deadline for Global Design Graduate Show 2021 in collaboration with Gucci, we interview Manon Lambeens, a 2021 graduating student from KASK School of Arts Ghent, MA Graphic Design. Our Global Design Graduate Show 2021 in collaboration with Gucci is open internationally to all art and design undergraduate or postgraduate students graduating in the Academic Year 2020-21 and the deadline to apply is August 31 2021.

ARTSTHREAD:Where are you currently based? Describe your workspace at home?

Manon Lambeens: I am from Leuven in Belgium. My workspace is my very small room at home. But it really depends on what I am doing, I can’t work just in one place. In my room I have a big computer screen so when I I'm working on photoshop I'm based there. But when I was doing all of my line drawings, I was in my living room, sometimes I sit in the kitchen. Most of my ideas come to me when I am walking or running outside with some fresh air.

ARTSTHREAD: What is the name, theme, concept and final outcome of your graduate project?

Manon Lambeens:The name of my project is Het Sociale Spel (The Social Game). I always had an interest in social design and social projects. All my life I've been in a youth movement and loved to help and interact with different people, to find solutions with simple tools. The Social game is about play, participation, design tools, language, typography, education, lateral thinking.

First, I started in my own bubble and made a design program. I made line drawings based on the cadavre exquis technique and gave it a twist with a set of rules. You need to use a ruler, you can only draw four lines etc. Afterwards I thought, alright these drawings were a game but how can I as a designer use them?
The second part was a workshop I held with a friend of mine for children that were around 11 years old. It was about printing techniques. I gave the children design tools, stencils with basic Bauhaus-like shapes. I explained to them the structure of a letter and they made their own alphabet and graphic posters. Everybody can be creative if you give them the right tools.

The Final part was my project Tunneltaal. When I was at highschool there was a tunnel near my house, front of a school. As a young woman I never felt safe cycling through the tunnel at night. So I came with the idea, which my town ended up funding; during Belgium's lockdown, social contact with more than four people was basically illegal. We encouraged young people to visit the tunnel with their friends and write messages or draw, there were no rules or guidelines, and my own friends even came and helped me run the project. I think people were happy to do something with their friends. For the tunnel I made my own typeface: Borgfeld which was then made into stencils, which we then painted with glow in the dark paint. This scary tunnel is now lit up, with the words from people who live around it.

GDCS 2021 For the culmination of her graduate project: Tunneltaal, Manon transformed a public tunnel with the help of local school children's drawings and messages which were then enhanced with glow-in-the-dark paint.



ARTSTHREAD:Can you explain the thinking behind the key concepts and outcomes of your project?

Manon Lambeens: I think it is important to not put limits on your thinking. Try everything! Try something and if it doesn't work just try again. But if you never try something you will never know the potential of that idea. Accessibility was very important to me, which is why I provided people with simple instructions and easy-to-use tools, so everybody could participate. My sister teaches at school for children who have autism. After I did the first workshop, she asked me if I could do one for her students, that is what is important to me, to design a world that works for the many, not just a select few. A designer I looked up to, Cas Holman, said that when she was a kid, she always wondered why sinks were so high, adults could bend to reach them, but children can’t grow taller in one second. So why don’t we make these sinks accessible for everyone?

ARTSTHREAD: How have you adapted your work to online tutorials and showcases?

Manon Lambeens: Because my focus was mostly on physical and social contact not much of the project was done digitally. The whole year we were at home behind screens, I tried my very best to avoid working entirely online.

ARTSTHREAD: How has online learning changed your outcomes?

Manon Lambeens: Sometimes it was handy, being able to talk to my teachers without taking a train ride for two hours. But I missed the physical part. Especially with the seminars, we had them physically in the first weeks and afterwards they were online. They were so much better when they weren’t online.

ARTSTHREAD:Have you had to innovate when working by yourself at home?

Manon Lambeens: I think my family had to, I dragged them into all of my crazy ideas. But I don’t think they minded. I actually liked working at home with my friends and family.

GDCS 2021 Accessibility is at the core of Manon's work, she believes design can bridge a gap between people and find solutions to social issues.



ARTSTHREAD: What's one thing that has helped you get through the last year?

Manon Lambeens: I don’t like to dwell on the things that I didn’t do, instead I’m grateful about the things that I did. My friends and family who supported me, the fun nights with friends, I am happy about those things, the things I did have.

ARTSTHREAD:What are the most positive learning outcomes from this process?

Manon Lambeens: Really do what you love. People can feel it when something is done with real enthusiasm and passion. Don’t let your artistic ego get in the way, it scares people. Be yourself and interact with people from all backgrounds and disciplines, you don’t need to change the world by yourself.

ARTSTHREAD: How do you think design can help improve the world?

Manon Lambeens: I think Design is a bridge between different worlds and I see graphic designers as translators. I hope that design can change the way we communicate, find solutions for many people instead of the 1%. I’d like to see design go back to its roots where function is the first rule and not aesthetics. As we all know, form follows function. I think design can help with social issues but it is a tricky path and we as designers need to be brave enough to take it.

ARTSTHREAD: What are your hopes for the future?

Manon Lambeens: That I can have fun and party with my friends again. To give my vision of design to other people and that my projects can inspire everyone, not just other designers. That design will be back in the streets because then it’s accessible for everyone. The attitude of thinking differently, creatively can help others. Just play! Play my Social Game!

ARTSTHREAD: Thank you Manon - we wish you all the very best

Images in slider: Manon and her work

Our Global Design Graduate Show 2021 in collaboration with Gucci is open internationally to all art and design undergraduate or postgraduate students graduating in the Academic Year 2020-21 and the deadline to apply is August 31 2021.

ARTS THREAD Newsletter

Of
Interest

Nur Alya Binte Rahmat - Student Q&A - Global Design Graduate Show 2022 in collaboration with Gucci

Nur Alya Binte Rahmat - Student Q&A - Global Design Graduate Show 2022 in collaboration with Gucci

July 15th, 2022
Written by Honor Rose Cooper Hedges
Craft, Fine Art, Textiles, GDGS Student Q&As
Records Fashion School Uganda students honour late classmate with collection

Records Fashion School Uganda students honour late classmate with collection

July 6th, 2022
Written by Calum Ross
Fashion Design
Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2022 

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2022 

August 2nd, 2022
Written by Calum Ross
Fine Art