Rute Chaves

16A Monday, 16B Monday
*See myTimetable for Room & Time

Studio Inquiry

The studio will explore the process of responding to crucial social issues via activism and critical inquiry will lead to develop inspiring visual communication that aims to be a catalyst for change.

Outcomes will include a range of possibilities including wearable artefacts.

This studio expects students to come with a strong agenda and will involve a rigorous series of investigations and critical thinking.


In this studio you will have the opportunity to invest your design skills into an area that you are passionate about.

You will explore what other agents of change have accomplished and the methods they used.

You will develop your personal design language in response to your chosen issue and the relevant audience.

The focus will be on responses that are wearable but there is flexibility to explore other means as well.

Topics will include: sustainable design, design activism, craftivism, hactivism, subversive advertising, greenwashing

Communication of knowledge

You will research a social issue of your choice, including the background, current pressures and relevant activist campaigns.

Based on this research you will formulate your own response, identifying the key audience and presenting a proposal that combines digital and analogue modes of engagement.

You will have the opportunity to prototype your ideas and test responses from selected audiences to help gather insights and shape your final proposal.

You will create a campaign through a creative narrative that uses a design format of your choice with particular focus on wearable forms.

Weekly tasks will include presenting to peers, working collaboratively and personal investigations through research and making.


Studio activities will help you to develop and effective language to communicate your ideas and invite social engagement.

We will examine a range of existing activism campaigns to help you gain a deeper understanding of what communication methods work.

You will propose a series of strategies to promote awareness about your social issue, including through wearable artefacts.


There are three assessment tasks for this studio, the briefs are made up of a range of milestone deliverables that are interconnected and build upon each other.

Brief 01.Who works in this space? How are they effective?
Brief 02.Research proposal: Exploration and development of your field of enquiry and your proposed project.
Brief 03.Final presentation of refined project and critical reflection.

Brief 04. SKO


Busch. (2022). Making trouble?: design and material activism. BLOOMSBURY VISUAL ARTS.

Communities of Practice
Designing Experiences, Designing for Social Change, Designing Disobedience

This context of this studio requires a high level of commitment to your cause and the willingness to engage with others on this topic. It is not for everyone!

You will be engaging with self-initiated work with the intention of discovering ways that you as a designer can be a catalyst for change. Spread your message! Wear your message!

About Rute Chaves

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