Dr. Georgios D. Liamadis at MDFF Greece—Athens 2020 | First Edition

As one of the guest speakers at MDFF Athens Dr. Liamadis, blending art, science and philosophy, will hold a presentation about Conceptual Design as culture generator.

Dr. George Liamadis is an Associate Professor, Head of the Lab of Industrial Design in the School of Visual and Applied Arts, Faculty of Fine Arts of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He is also a visiting professor in the School of Architecture of the Faculty of Engineering of the AUTH and in the postgraduate programme MSc in Strategic Product Design of the International Hellenic University. He holds a first degree in Architecture (AUTH), a PgD/MA in Automotive Design (School of Art & Design, Coventry University), and a PhD in the field of Industrial Design. He has been honoured a scholarship for doctoral research by the State Scholarships Foundation (IKY) and Excellence Award for doctoral research by the Research Committee of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. His scientific expertise lays in the field of theory and practice of industrial design, with emphasis on the semiotics of industrial objects. He has undertaken his Diploma and MA projects with Centro Stile Alfa Romeo and Jaguar Cars respectively. He has extensive professional experience in automotive and industrial design with TWT GmbH, Pininfarina, SVP Worldwide and EL.V.O. (Hellenic Vehicle Industry S.A.). He was Chief Designer of the concept car Aletis for EL.V.O. and Scientific Curator of the exhibition “Transport Technology” at the Science Center and Technology Museum NOESIS. He is a Member of the Design Research Society (DRS), the Hellenic Semiotics Society, and the Technical Chamber of Greece. He has extensive research work, and a series of publications in scientific journals and conference proceedings.
He has taken numerous initiatives to promote Industrial Design and Design Thinking in Greece, such as the organization and co-ordination of “Design Lab for Kids”, an innovative Research Initiative aimed at the pedagogical use of Design as a tool for the unity of STEM and the ARTS in collaboration with INDEX: Design to Improve Life, the Onassis Foundation and MOMus. He is Founder and Head of the Industrial Design Lab in the School of Visual & Applied Arts of the AUTH, which is active in four areas: Research, Design, Education and Interdisciplinarity/Extroversion. In this context, he developed interdisciplinary synergies with other Departments of Universities, Institutions and Organizations in Greece and abroad. Dr. Liamadis, author of the recently published book “Automotive Culture: Design & Styling”, has been honored the Excellence Award for academic achievements in 2010—11 from the Research Committee of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

Conceptual Design as culture generator

Design, apart from the obvious task to provide applied solutions in the form of products that may bring a better future, transcends the world of the already known and refers to innovative concepts compelled to take the lead and show the world a different way forward

Starting with Italian Radical Design in the 60s and moving on to the notion of Critical Design as emerged by the work of Anthony Dunne and Fiona Raby, Conceptual Design has always been a powerful tool to attack the dogmas of contemporary consumer culture. 

The Conceptual Design process does not immediately lead to useful objects, but rather to food for thought whose usefulness is revealed by its ability to help others prevent and direct future outcomes. The job of conceptual designers is to stimulate discussion and debate about the social, cultural and ethical future implications of decisions made today. 

Moving at the cutting edge of Speculative Design, a wide range of conceptual objects and projects presented here imagine alternative possibilities and different ways of being, and give tangible form to new values and priorities towards our shared futures

According to French philosopher Gilles Deleuze, the task of science is to make functions & things, the task of philosophy is to create concepts and, the task of the arts is to foster the sensations. Design starts from new concepts that take the form of functions and objects, which shape our lives and, at their best, foster the sensations. Apart from an act in the crossroads of art and science, Conceptual Design is philosophy applied in a form of communication with the power to educate people and generate culture.