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Kelli Anderson: Designer as Scientist

Nov 11 2015

By Fernando Capeto

Last Thursday MFAD students met Kelli Anderson, an artist, designer and tinkerer, as she defines herself. As soon as she started to speak, it was possible to sense her excitement towards her work, which varies from traditional areas to the most experimental activities involving design and art. Kelli is the kind of person that makes you feel awake, inspired and, even makes you think about how lazy you might be.

She has pretty much done it all and talks about it with so much joy that it is contagious. From brand design, illustration, apps, pop-up books, and the list goes on… The focus on research and experimentation, makes me think of her more as a scientist rather than a designer or an artist.

This interest on the process, together with a inventive mind is what makes her work so unique and probably what made possible for her to work on her own projects along with client projects. And this is a dream for a lot of us, right?

After Kelli’s lecture, I believe we can do it! The answer apparently lies on asking questions, developing ideas, or several hypothesis, and test, experience and refine them, in an ongoing process fueled by our own curiosity, as a scientist-designer would do.

Nobody knows where it can lead you, but it will definitely take you to a place that you have never been before, somewhere new, exciting and probably fun! Lesson learned Kelli: we should be passionate, curious and, most of all, be present at the process with our full selves.

One last thing: I’m sorry, but I don’t agree with your mother, Kelli. You look great in photographs!

*If you want to know more about Kelli Anderson’s work, visit her website.

Post by Fernando Capeto, 1st year student at SVA MFA Design.