Design entrepreneurship: joking, right?!

Design entrepreneurship: joking, right?!

By Admin I: Well, being honest, this topic started during the latest Beirut Design Week, after a talk by Tashkeil that started inspirational and ended irrelevantly hypocrite.

Tashkeil defines itself as a network or platform reintroducing designers in the Middle East as active creative stakeholders in the global arena. They aim to revive the region’s heritage as an eclectic center for design, art, architecture and culture in hopes of reducing Designers’ migration to other locations.

Fancy, glam and glitters, doesn’t work. Why?

The good intentions are there, true, but the showcased examples such as Nivine Maktabi for example, or the other ‘daddy has a packaging factory’ came too exaggerated, while ‘struggling‘ to become entrepreneurs came highly doubtable. Successful design experiences in Lebanon, if not in the region, are a result of a smart business approach or an inherited legacy, not of a good design process. ‘Design’ stops when entrepreneurial efforts take place, which is exactly what happened with Rana Salam, Nada Debs, Elie Saab and others, even reaching Zaha Hadid. Design in those cases became a reproduction of success, an auto-tracing routine that’s not evolving. Still looks good, still appeals to the audience but totally lacks design as an experimental growing practice.

Let’s get real you guys, ‘design entrepreneurship’ is the latest ginormous lie, right after ‘visual communication’ and ‘problem solving’. it’s just the recent glam title to hide an inferior presence, because being who we are, stupid business people / good designers is not enough to brag about.

Let’s leave design to designers and business to business people because there’s one single way to improve the field and it mainly evolves around awakening a passive audience, educating receptors and cutting our design trallalaaa crap.

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2 comments
  1. Doreen toutikian said:

    You make a very good point. I am currently in a great design and social change in oslo and a speaker said smthg very relevant. A good design process, when it is truly based on the needs of people and is cocreated with them, does not need a sales or marketing team. And we have been witnessing many success stories as such based on this new business model. So maybe its about rethinking the roles of the business people and designers in our somewhat still traditional market?

    • Admin I said:

      First of all, your comments are always a delight Doreen. Second, it’s indeed true, there’s a whole misconception around the role of a designer; while some think they can end famine, others are too immersed in visual crap. There must be a balance that no one’s truly engaged in finding anything about it.

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