Dr Beck Davis
Current: Senior Lecturer School of Art & Design, Australian National University, Canberra.
Formerly: Convenor, Higher Degree Research Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Brisbane.
PROFESSIONAL National Director, Design Institute of Australia (DIA)
BACKGROUND Bachelor of Built Environment & Engineering (Industrial Design), Graduate Diploma (Industrial Design) + PhD in design activity & collaboration methods (analogous thinking, links between gesture and creativity).
My experiences with product design at both a professional and educational level have afforded me unique insights into the challenges confronting designers in the face of rapid social and environmental change. In this globalised era of unprecedented inter-connectivity, design provides the opportunity to open up pathways to new alternatives. I am under no illusion that the design discipline is at a crossroad and is in need of change. I also believe there are many opportunities for designers to engage with a new way of thinking and practicing. My recent work recognises the critical role design has played in creating much of the environmental impacts we see today. Such impacts, further reinforce my passion for design as well as the critical need to better educate designers to think for the future. Re-consider, re-think, re-educate, re-design.
RESEARCH My research focus is on early stage design, examining design teams and how they collaborate and respond to complex problems. This includes the analysis of non-verbal, gestural interactions as well as the use of metaphors and analogies during the creative process. I also engage in teaching and research collaborations that explore wearables and embodied media. Recently, I co-founded The Walter Collective to undertake experiments across tangible, embodied and organic media; Livespace socially and environmentally responsible design studio; coordinated the Design In Flux exhibition; co-led Cloud Workshop and co-ordinated E-WASTE [RE]booted an immersive student-designed educational experience with Queensland Museum. I also co-curated the Wear Next_ exhibition at Artisan (2015) and AVA Gallery in Hong Kong (2016); as well as Experimental Thinking/Design Practices exhibition at Griffith University Art Gallery (2015) and assisted with EXCHANGE exhibition at Crane Arts, Philadelphia (2015). Current projects include Climatic: Post Normal Design exhibition (2016) at the Miller Gallery, Carnegie Mellon University and Mediated Interactions: how technologies shape experiences and creative collaborations.