Transparent Tools - Jesse Howard
Transparent Tools - Jesse Howard

Designers, are you ready for Adhocracy?

Istanbul Design Biennial exhibition brings contemporary production techniques back to the artisan's workshop

 

An interesting exhibition opened at the Istanbul Design Biennial on Monday. Dubbed Adhocracy, it is inspired by a recent article in The Economist, which argues that the advent of 3-D printing, novel materials, and smart new manufacturing techniques is changing the way we design and make things. The Economist says that this could all constitute a third industrial revolution, with greater emphasis on individuals fashioning single items and production premises that "may look more like weavers' cottages than Ford's assembly line."

Jesse Howard's water boiler
Jesse Howard's water boiler

Exhibitors at Adhocracy, held at Galata Greek Primary School in the Turkish capital, have certainly put these theories into practice. We're particularly taken with Dutch designer and exhibitor Jesse Howard's sleek looking OpenStructures water boiler, made from components most of us could pick up in our local hardware store, as well as his vacuum cleaner fashioned from a plastic thermos flask.

Ufold's Stratigraphic Porcelain
Ufold's Stratigraphic Porcelain

At the more high-tech end of things, Belgian designers Unfold have a great Stratigraphic Porcelain set of products, produced via 3-D printing. Whether we all have the time, skill or inclination to make our own toasters just yet is unclear. However, Adhocracy certainly could free smart product designers from the tyranny of the production line. Catch the show if you can - it runs until Dec 12.