A history of New Zealand product design with Michael Smythe

Join Michael Smythe for an in-depth series of talks, spread over four Sundays in November and December, surveying Aotearoa’s design histories. The series will look at how locally made and marketed products have reflected and negotiated national identity through shifting relationships with the British Empire and the wider Moana Oceania region. 

Michael Smythe spent 30-something years as an industrial design practitioner before completing a Master of Design Management at Unitec. Having equipped himself to strategize the future, he was invited to pivot 180° and teach design history to Bachelor of Product Design students – “because, Michael, you were there for quite a bit of it”. This led to writing New Zealand by design: A history of New Zealand product design, which was subsequently awarded Best First Book of Non-Fiction at the 2012 New Zealand Post Book Awards. Since then he has written Gifford Jackson: New Zealand industrial design pathfinder, and Design generation: How Peter Haythornthwaite shaped New Zealand’s design-led enterprise. His current book project surveys a global history of our ‘manufactured culture’.

This series is one of two offered by Smythe. Find more information on A global history of object design here

Sundays, 13, 20, 27 November, 4 December, 2 – 4pm

Waged $75 l Unwaged $60 (or $120 l $95 for both courses) | Book now

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