State. Respond.

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  • Recent debate within the design community would suggest that sustainability is, or should now be, a fundamental consideration for all designers. Certainly, there is substantial evidence to show how design is making a positive difference in the troubled world in which we live. However, the design industry also continues to contribute to unsustainable systems of waste and excess and has played a significant role in many of the problems we now face. This is both a confronting and exciting time for designers as they make decisions about the work they do, the way they do it and the impact it has on our lives and our planet.

    Object Gallery invited creative directors from five outstanding design studios – each based in New South Wales and each with a genuine track record in the area of ethical and sustainable design – to respond to this statement.

    Bird Textiles was one of them.

    How did we respond?

    The NSW Education Department, in conjunction with Object, interviewed Rachel at her home and studio. The interview wil be used in schools across Australia, along with interviews with the other four design studios. Watch these two 5 minute interviews on Vimeo.

    http://vimeo.com/10736590 and http://vimeo.com/10737047

    These videos were made in conjunction with a static exhibition held at Object Gallery in Feb/March 2010. This exhibition included both visual and writtem responses to the statement from each of the design studios.

    This was Rachels written response to the statement.

    As designers, we have an opportunity, and a responsibility, to lead and encourage positive social change.
    Small to medium-scale businesses generate 40% of Australia's GDP, represent 48% of the workforce and make up 96% of all businesses in Australia. On any given day every individual will have numerous interactions with these businesses. It is this point of interaction that offers one of the largest opportunities to achieve dramatic sustainability outcomes.
    If business is managed from the heart, great things can happen. Bird started with two old car batteries and a solar panel. Seven years on, we are servicing a global market, but most importantly, we are continuing to educate and inform on issues relating to sustainability.
    Social change. It is less about me, me, me, and more about building bridges for a future.’

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    References: www.object.com.au