Design Philosophy Bar “Provoke Bar”

At Design Philosophy Bar “Provoke Bar” leaders of their fields in education, design, and editing gather from both within and without Japan to discuss and consider the provoking ideas each brings together in one place—all with a drink in hand. There were six entries to this symposium, jointly sponsored by Musashino Art University Department of Science of Design and Kyushu University Faculty of Design.

Session 1
7/27 (Friday), 7:00 P.M. – 9:30 P.M.
Location: Konya 2023
Title: When a Design is Made
Provocateurs: Takaaki Bando, Hisayasu Ihara
Coordinator: Toru Koga
Unlike art, design is not something that gives shape or meaning. Considering that design exists at the intersection of two types of media—visual and cerebral—then what constitutes its existence? Prof. Bando discusses “The Statue of Design” in regards to the form of design that exists at these two points of contact along with what it means to participate in the moment Josef Albers’ ideal colors and shapes take form, while Prof. Ihara speaks about typifying isotopes and the approach from shape to symbol, laying bare the aspects of the thrilling existence of design.

Session 2
8/3 (Friday) 7:00 P.M. – 9:30 P.M.
Location: Sanbon
Title: You Don’t Need the Basics to Practice Design (Do you?)
Provocateurs: Hiroaki Kawanami, Yutaka Yamauchi
Coordinator: Moe Shimomura
Do the philosophical questions of “What is design?” and “What purpose does design hold” carry any weight when compared to meeting the client’s needs? Or are these questions simply a bygone relic of youth that ultimately hinders productivity? Mr. Kawanami—Mr. Kenya Hara’s right hand man—and Mr. Yamauchi—a practicing social designer—take time from their incredibly packed schedules to discuss how the foundations of design, or the lack thereof, play a role in their design practices.

Session 3
8/17 (Friday) 7:00 P.M. – 9:30 P.M.
Location: Konya 2023
Title: Can You Teach Design?
Speakers: Shin Hee-kyong, Akiyo Kobayashi
Coordinator: Minako Ikeda
If we assume a design gives “life” by combining various different elements, then it takes more than being a professional designer to make that process happen. If that is the case, then the ultimate goal of a design should be to nurture the designing entity: the human. William Morris would say that the art of design cannot be taught. Shin Heekyong, a professor from South Korea who teaches the fundamentals of design, and Prof. Kobayashi, who teaches design theory, probe the questions that lie at the root of design education, attempting to identify the entity behind the design and what conditions must be met in order to allow it to take shape.

Session 4
8/30 (Thursday) 7:00 P.M. – 9:30 P.M.
Location: Konya 2023
Title: Designing with Continuous Editing
Provocateurs: Keiichiro Fujisaki, Minako Ikeda
Coordinator: Toru Koga
Design is often said to be a solution to a problem, but in comparing the similarities between editing and design, it becomes evident that design is a never-ending, multi-tiered creation process that relies on finding the unasked question based on the answers obtained; a process that may lead to finding a new guide to design for the 21st century. Prof. Fujisaki, editor in chief of such publications of “Designers’ Workshop” along with Prof. Ikeda, who specializes in information editing and design history, discuss the creativity unique to the design process while weaving together the editing and design viewpoints inherent to the editing process.

Session 5
8/31 (Friday) 7:00 P.M. – 9:30 P.M.
Location: Konya 2023
Title: Design as an Element of Change
Provocateurs: Akiyo Kobayashi, Toru Koga
Coordinator: Hisayasu Ihara
Here, we re-examine present-day design from the perspective of semioticians Maurice and Peirce along with Deleuze who pioneered concept theory. Assuming that humans are the ones who give it meaning, then the goal of design is ultimately not physical nor does it stick to one function. And if that is the case, to what does it give shape, and for what purpose? Prof. Kobayashi, who tackles design from a semiotic standpoint, and Prof. Koga, who specializes in modern philosophy, search for a new angle on design as it links together symbols and concepts.

Session 6 (Final)
9/7 (Friday) 7:00 P.M. – 9:30 P.M.
Location: Reizensou
Title: The Humanism of Design 2.0
Provocateurs: Minako Ikeda, Hisayasu Ihara, Toru Koga
Technologies developed for the purpose of “convenience” “comfort” and “security” often go hand in hand with negative aspects such as environmental pollution and damage in addition to alienating its human users. That being said, technology should be truly suitable for humankind. So the question must be asked: what is the “humanity” that this technology should serve? And is that humanity, in fact, the underlying cause of environmental destruction and human destruction itself? The members of Kyushu University Faculty of Design who champion “The Humanization of Technology” give an overview on the foundation of design from a humanist standpoint based on the latest design trends.

Konya 2023: 201 Daiichi Matsumura Building, 1-14-28 Daimyo, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka 810-0041 Tel: 092-984-6292
Sanbon: 402 Bizan Building, 3-12-22 Yakuin, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka 810-0022
Reizensou: 9-35 Kamikawabata-machi, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka 812-0026 Tel: 092-985-4562

Bar charge: ¥2,000, limit 30 attendees per session.

[Provocateur and Coordinator Profiles]
A “Provocateur” is a person who promotes discussion by asking provoking questions.

Takaaki Bando /
Graphic designer/Professor in the Department of Science of Design at Musashino Art University. Most recognized for his graphical works Rietveld, Mies, Katsura Villa, and “Kieler Woche 1996” VI (German). Activities range from research and development on lightweight polyhedral structures by means of synergetic theory to collaborative work with the Bandung Institute of Technology in Indonesia on using bamboo for structural development and research.

Hisayasu Ihara /
Professor, Kyushu University Faculty of Design. Gained research experience at GK Industrial Design Associates, and in 1988 became an assistant at Kyushu University’s School of Design. Has since taken up research on the paper media forms prevalent in the first half of the 20th century, such as brücke and Isotype.

Toru Koga /
Professor, Kyushu University Faculty of Design; specializes in philosophy. Current research is based on modern western philosophy. Even while preoccupied with the many issues of present-day life such as Minamata disease, leprosy, environmental destruction, and totalitarianism, he still attempts to build on the fundamental theories of design.

Hiroaki Kawanami /
Nippon Design Center, Hara Design Institute director. After graduating from the Kyushu Institute of Design he began working at StudioShirotani as a product designer working with kitchen appliances. In 2011, he joined Nippon Design Center, Hara Design Institute, taking on a variety of roles, from VI and graphic design to sign planning, exhibition planning, and product design.

Yutaka Yamauchi /
Representative of the board of directors for NPO Doner le Mot, and director of Fukushigoto co., ltd. Holds a doctorate of design (Kyushu University). At Doner le Mot, he takes a deep look at super-aged society and tackles the challenge of creating a communal society. At Fukushigoto, he faces the issue of creating rich bonds between the disadvantaged and society through business. In addition to these duties, he is also a university professor.

Moe Shimomura /
Research fellow at Kyushu University Faculty of Design. After graduating from Kyushu Institute of Design, she built up experience in interactive and communicative design at GK TECH. Currently, as a member of the office of strategic initiatives and projects at the Kyushu University Faculty of Design, she works closely with research institutions both inside and outside Japan, conducting international project management on education and research.

Shin Hee-kyong /
Completed undergraduate and postgraduate courses at Seoul National University and Musashino Art University, obtained her masters and PhD at Nihon University. Invited as a foreign research scholar at Musashino Art University and headed the council to select academic books (art department) of great merit for the South Korean Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Currently a professor of visual design at Semyung University, standing director of the Korean Society of Design Science.

Akiyo Kobayashi /
Professor at Musashino Art University Department of Science of Design. Specializes in design theory/methodology and its history. His current project is investigating the “visualized” foundation of design from the perspective of a semiotician. To that end, he takes into account every aspect of its creation, from history—such as the 1920s where the concept of design was just being formed—to methodology and color theory.

Minako Ikeda /
Associate professor, Kyushu University Faculty of Design. She encountered Bauhaus while studying art history at Goethe University Frankfurt in Germany which piqued her interest in the field of design. After returning to Japan, she completed her graduate courses at Tokyo University of the Arts and became an assistant at the same university; later, she began working for a publisher editing design publications. After leaving, she jointly established IIDj and began working in earnest on informational design. She specializes in design and information editing.

Keiichiro Fujisaki /
A design critic and editor. Graduated from Sophia University’s foreign language program in German studies. After becoming editor in chief of the art publication “Designers’ Workshop,” he began contributing articles on design and architecture to magazines and newsletters as a freelance writer. He joined the Tokyo University of the Arts design faculty as an associate professor in 2010, becoming a full professor in 2016. He is currently serializing articles in design magazine “AXIS” chronicling his visits to laboratories at the forefront of biology.

[Co-Sponsors] Kyushu University Faculty of Design, Musashino Art University Department of Science of Design
[Supported by] Center for Designed Futures of Kyushu University
[With Cooperation From] NPO Doner le Mot, Konya 2023
[Contact] Kyushu University Faculty of Design, Toru Koga Tel: +81 92 553 4400


This is an archive of images, videos and documents recording our activities up until now.
You can download a file by selecting the thumbnail.

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Design for LGBTs and an Inclusive Society
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