Designing in Dark Times: an Arendtian Lexicon

To celebrate the release of Designing in Dark Times: an Arendtian Lexicon, we are organizing a series of dialogues to further explore what “dark times” means today and design’s recent positioning towards the expanded field of the society within it through an Arendtian lens.

Each Dialogue will convene several of the book’s contributors to discuss connections between design, politics, and philosophy for acting and designing against, within, and through dark times.

This session will feature Liesbeth Huybrechts (Common Interests), Andrew Shea (Human Rights), Andrea Botero (Humanity), Eric Gordon (Play), and Caroline Dionne (Speech) with the mediation of the book’s editors Eduardo Staszowski and Virginia Tassinari.

Join us on Zoom this coming Wednesday, 14 April, 12:00 ET in this conversation about our present, universal moment navigating darkness, light, and the many shades in between. Register at


About the Book:
Edited by Eduardo Staszoswki and Virginia Tassinari, “Designing in Dark Times: An Arendtian Lexicon” gathers 56 terms drawn from Hannah Arendt’s writings as entry points for authors to explore what “dark times” means today and design’s recent positioning towards the expanded field of the society within it. The book is part of the “Designing in Dark Times” series, published by Bloomsbury, which investigates design’s capacity to offer critical and transformative perspectives on our contemporary condition.

Guy Debord’s Game of War: A Conversation With Emmanuel Guy

Thursday, November 14
6:00 pm
Kellen Auditorium
66 5th Avenue

We know Guy Debord (1931-1994) as a poet, filmmaker, artist, revolutionary theorist, editor and founder of the Situationist International avant-garde movement. But above all else, he was a strategist: poetry, cinema, theory and the avant-garde were, for Debord, means to be deployed in a struggle against the society of his age. To sharpen his strategic instincts and those of his potential comrades, Debord designed a game, the Jeu de la guerre (Game of War), which consisted of a gridded board and a set of pieces representing the various units of an army. Through an exploration of the genealogies, contexts, gameplay and contemporary uses of this object, Emmanuel Guy proposes to consider the implications of this unique ludic and social object for our understanding of Debord, and what lessons might be gleaned from a Situationist art of war.

Emmanuel Guy is a researcher, curator and Assistant Professor of Art and Design History at Parsons Paris The New School.

Presented by the Art and Design History and Theory Program at Parsons School of Design

Plot(s) Call for Editorial Board Members

ADHT Dean, Rhonda Garelick, Joins Bard Graduate Center for BGC Late: Jazz & Conversation in the Gallery


Bard Graduate Center Gallery
18 West 86th Street New York, NY 10024
Thursday October 10, 2019 6:00  – 8:00 pm
*free, registration required

Join The Bard Graduate Center for BGC Late: Jazz & Conversation in the Gallery. See the exhibitions and learn from provocative conversations about the objects on view. Gene Perla and the musicians he brings together start playing at 6 pm. At 7:00 pm, fashion scholars Waleria DorogovaRhonda Garelick, Mellissa Huber and Jan Glier Reeder lead a conversation about women designers, including Gabrielle Chanel, Jeanne Lanvin, Boué Sœurs and Jeanne Paquin. Music Provided by: Troy Roberts (Sax), Rachel Z ( Piano), Gene Perla (Bass) and Clarence Penn (Drums)

Waleria Dorogova is a historian and Ph.D. candidate at the University of Bonn, where she studied Art History and Classical Archaeology. Now based in Vienna, she currently works at the interdisciplinary project Austrian Center for Fashion Research at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. Prior, she was curator of the Goldsmiths Textile Collection and worked for Kerry Taylor Auctions, as well as an independent researcher. Her research and publications center around early twentieth-century haute couture, Russian diaspora in Paris fashion and international relations in fashion. The subject of her dissertation is the history of the Franco-American fashion house Boué Sœurs (1897-1957).

Rhonda Garelick is the Dean of the School of Art and Design History and Theory at Parsons/The New School. She is the author of Mademoiselle: Coco Chanel and the Pulse of History (Random House, 2014); Electric Salome: Loie Fuller’s Performance of Modernism (Princeton University Press, 2007); Rising Star: Dandyism, Gender, and Performance in the Fin de Siècle (Princeton University Press, 1998); and co-editor of Fabulous Harlequin: ORLAN and the Patchwork Self (University of Nebraska Press, 2010). Her column, “Reading the Signs” appears regularly in The Cut (New York Magazine), and she her cultural criticism appears often in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Brooklyn Rail, and other venues. She is a Guggenheim fellow and has also received awards from the NEA, the NEH, the Getty Research Institute, the Dedalus Foundation, the American Association of University Women, the Whiting Foundation, and the American Council of Learned Societies.

Mellissa Huber is assistant curator of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute and specializes in twentieth-century fashion. Since joining the Museum in 2012, she has assisted the department with research and content development for numerous special exhibitions, including Punk: Chaos to Couture (2013); Charles James: Beyond Fashion (2014); Death Becomes Her: A Century of Mourning Attire (2014); China: Through the Looking Glass (2015); Jacqueline de Ribes: The Art of Style (2015); Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology (2016); Masterworks: Unpacking Fashion (2016); Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and The Catholic Imagination (2018); and the forthcoming In Pursuit of Fashion: The Sandy Schreier Collection (2019).

Jan Glier Reeder is a fashion historian and consulting curator for the Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Music for BGC Late: Jazz & Conversation in the Gallery is guest curated by musician Gene Perla. Perla was raised in New Jersey where he studied classical piano and trombone. After attending Berklee School of Music, he moved to New York and began his musical career as a jazz bassist. He has performed and/or recorded with Chick Corea, Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Herman, Elvin Jones, Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra, Chuck Mangione, Joni Mitchell, Buddy Rich, Sonny Rollins, Nina Simone, Frank Sinatra, Stone Alliance, Sarah Vaughan, Nancy Wilson, and others.

Playing The Auditorium – Kabir Carter

Playing The Auditorium
Kabir Carter

October 2, 2019, 5:00 PM to 6:15 PM
The Auditorium (Alvin Johnson/J.M. Kaplan Hall)
The New School, 66 West 12th Street, New York

Register Here:

This event celebrates the sonic possibilities of one of The New School’s oldest and most stunning spaces. Designed in the 1930s by legendary architect Joseph Urban, The Auditorium has served as the venue for notable lectures and performances including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 1964 speech “The Summer of Our Discontent.” In a 2004 article, the New York Times described the auditorium as “one of the city’s great modern interiors,” an “egg-shaped room [that] focuses on a broad, arched proscenium,” with a “delicate, layered ceiling” “painted in nine tones of gray.”

Contemporary sound artist Kabir Carter will evoke the architecture and history of this auditorium in performing a unique sound composition, using the space not simply as a site for performance but as an instrument to be played. Sound technicians who have worked at the auditorium over the years have been invited to participate in the performance.

Kabir Carter has physically interrogated and spatially expanded the acoustic and durational limits of performing with microphones. He has installed temporary sound works in a variety of indoor and outdoor locations in several cities. His interests include architectural acoustics, the transmission of sound across medium boundaries, and the affective potentialities of sound-in-space. Carter has been a fellow at Hochschule Für Bildende Kunste Braunschweig and resident at Aalto Acoustics Lab at Aalto University, and LMCC Workspace Program, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. His work has been presented and exhibited at: Nokia Bell Labs, Murray Hill, NJ;  HKW – Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Museet for Samtidskunst, Roskilde; and Studio Museum in Harlem, New York. He holds an MFA from Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College.
Organized By: Caroline Dionne & Sreshta Rit Premnath
AV and Technical Support: Brian Kase & Sylvan Simon

2019 ADHT Graduate Student Symposium

At Parsons, we celebrate curiosity and critical thinking.
Every path taken broadens our perspectives.
Welcome to The 2019 Parsons Festival ADHT Graduate Symposium
Nexus: An Intersection of Ideas.

Graduate students from the School of Art and Design History and Theory including Fashion Studies, Design Studies, and History of Design and Curatorial Studies will present their work during this two-day symposium that kicks off the 2019 Parsons Festival on Thursday, May 2nd and Friday, May 3rd!

Our speakers come from different fields within ADHT, yet their methodologies demonstrate an interdisciplinary way of thinking and addressing larger issues at the intersection of art, design and theory.
Come learn how historic issues converge with contemporary lives, how material objects carry relationships in society, and how these different fields of scholarship cross paths.

This year we are pleased to continue the tradition of presenting a series of longer talks and multimedia projects each morning. During the afternoon sessions we will have shorter, fast-paced PechaKucha talks. This is a swift presentation style developed in 2003 by the Tokyo-based architecture firm Klein Dytham; its origins and exciting tempo make it ideal for conveying the diverse and rich work of our ADHT students.

2019 ADHT Symposium Planning Committee

Designing after the Designing is Done

Irem C. Yildiz’s (MA Design Studies 2018) thesis project is selected as a finalist

We are proud to announce that Irem C. Yildiz’s (MA Design Studies 2018) thesis project The Vacant Store Initiative has been selected as one of the finalists in the Student Category of 2019 World Changing Ideas Competition of Fast Company. Irem’s project can be explored here.


Plot(s) Journal of Design Studies Call for Submissions

Plot(s) Journal of Design Studies will be accepting a second round of submissions with a new deadline of November 30, 2018. Please see below for the original Call For Submissions:

Plot(s) Journal of Design Studies is an annual peer-reviewed publication produced and edited by the MA Design Studies program at Parsons School of Design in New York. As a multidisciplinary journal, Plot(s) attempts to articulate the ways in which design can shape and transform the human experience.

This year we will produce a double printed issue featuring Volume V and VI, which will be released in Spring 2019. Accepted submissions will appear in print and online as part of our multimedia online journal that explores the realm of design research. Submissions are open to graduate students, recent graduates, design practitioners, and academics from all fields.

We are seeking submissions in the following suggested areas of exploration. Submissions venturing outside and beyond these themes will also be considered.

  • Design and Intersectional Politics
  • Design and Crisis Management
  • Dangerous Design
  • Design Futures/Design Realities


Guidelines for Submission:

We ask that submissions are guided by a process that involves design thinking/reasoning, and strongly encourage the use of supporting visuals.

As a multidisciplinary journal, we accept a wide range of formats including:

  • academic essays,
  • visual essays,
  • design research,
  • timely book/exhibition reviews,

and well-documented design/architectural projects that reflect upon or challenge current design discourse and fit within our theme.

We will also be accepting exploratory audio-visual formats including:

  • interviews
  • podcasts
  • and unique video essays


Digitally-native content will be posted exclusively on Plot(s) Multimedia.

Papers should be submitted as Microsoft Word documents. Papers between 1,500 and 3,000 words will be peer reviewed. The Plot(s) editorial board will edit shorter texts falling between 500 and 1,000 words. Submissions must be properly cited as endnotes and formatted in the Chicago style upon submission. Images must be at least 300 dpi, captioned, and copyright permissions must be attained. Please submit images in a separate zip folder attached to the email.

Submissions which do not fit these criteria cannot be accepted.

Please send submissions by November 30, 2018 (Friday) via email to

Unruly Design: Making, Changing and Breaking Rules

A colloquium in Design Studies, Fashion Studies, History of Design & Curatorial Studies

Friday, March 2, 2018
Opening conversation with Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator of Design and Architecture, MoMA, and Jamer Hunt, Vice Provost for Transdisciplinary Initiatives, Parsons School of Design, The New School
Theresa Lang Center, Arnold Hall 
55 West 13th Street,
New York, NY 10011


Friday, March 2, 2018
Join us for an unruly feast
RSVP required
Wollman Hall, Eugene Lang
65 West 11th Street, New York, NY 10011


Saturday, March 3, 2018
Panel presentations and discussions
Theresa Lang Center, Arnold Hall
55 West 13th Street,
New York, NY 10011

The School of Art and Design History and Theory is pleased to announce its inaugural colloquium, scheduled to take place Friday and Saturday, March 2 and 3, 2018 at Parsons School of Design in New York City.

“Unruly Design” explores the rules that govern design concepts, acts of making and fashion practices both historically and in today’s context. Who sets the rules within a design field, designers, clients, consumers or end-users? How should designers engage the legal structures that bind production and consumption and/or respond to market forces? How might consumers and end-users rewrite explicit or implicit codes of use through practice? How are the rules of design made, changed or broken? Discussions will move across several fields of design— from design history to fashion studies; design studies to intersections of design with artistic practices—taking into account current historical and contemporary perspectives including policy making and service design. This two-day colloquium responds to current discussions on the inherent political and ethical implication of design practices, as well as an expanded cultural terrain where the idea of design has become mainstream. This series of interventions and conversations navigates the complex relationship of design with a certain sense of order—with ways of doing and modes of saying that frame design processes and their outcomes within more or less strict, often conflicting sets of rules. Is today’s design unruly or can it be?

Speakers: Paola Antonelli, Museum of Modern Art; Otto von Busch, Parsons School of Design, School of Design Strategies; Lily Chumley, New York University; Tracy L. Ehrlich, Parsons School of Design, History of Design and Curatorial Studies; Carma Gorman, University of Texas at Austin; Denise Green, Cornell University; Elizabeth Guffey, State University of New York at Purchase; Victoria Hattam, New School for Social Research; Jamer Hunt, Parsons School of Design, Transdisciplinary Studies; Charlene K. Lau, Parsons School of Design, Fashion Studies; Ulrich Leben, Parsons School of Design, History of Design and Curatorial Studies; Andrea Lipps, Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum; Lauren Downing Peters, Centre for Fashion Studies, Stockholm University; Nicole C. Rudolph, Adelphi University; Georgia Traganou, Parsons School of Design, Design Studies; McKenzie Wark, New School for Social Research.

Event Schedule

Friday March 2, 2018

5:30 – 7:00pm Opening conversation with Paola Antonelli and Jamer Hunt

7:00 – 10:00pm Unruly Feast

Saturday March 3, 2018

10:00 – 10:30am Participants arrival & coffee

10:30am – 12:00pm Session 1 – RULE MAKING

Drawing Beyond the Academy in Eighteenth-Century Rome 
Tracy L. Ehrlich, Parsons School of Design, History of Design and Curatorial Studies

The world of plenty or a headless chicken?
Ulrich Leben

Dangerous Curves: Disciplining the Fat, Female Body Through Design Discourse
Lauren Downing Peters, Centre for Fashion Studies, Stockholm University

Design wants to be free: copying as democratic practice in the USA
Carma Gorman, University of Texas at Austin

Lily Chumley

12:00 to 1:15pm Lunch break

1:15 – 2:45pm Session 2 – RULE CHANGING

Robes of Resistance: Nuu-chah-nulth Declarations on Cloth
Denise Green, Cornell University

Making and Breaking Rules: Selwyn Goldsmith Designing for the Disabled
Elizabeth Guffey, State University of New York at Purchase

Rule-makers and Their Discontents: Who Changed French Postwar Housing?
Nicole C. Rudolph, Adelphi University

Border Rules: Design and Production across the Rio Grande
Victoria Hattam, New School for Social Research

Design in Autonomy
Jilly Traganou, Parsons School of Design, Design Studies

2:45 to 3:00pm Coffee break

3:00 – 4:30pm Session 3 – RULE BREAKING

Touching and Taking power: Hacking and DIY Activism
Otto von Busch, Parsons School of Design, School of Design Strategies

Joris Laarman Lab: Design in the Digital Era
Andrea Lipps, Assistant Curator, Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum, Smithsonian Design Museum, NY

The “Porn-Again Avant-Garde”: Transgression and the Contemporary Fashion Vanguard 
Charlene K. Lau, Parsons School of Design, Fashion Studies

Design for Concepts
McKenzie Wark, New School for Social Research

4:30 – 5:00pm Closing Reception


Organizing Committee:
Rosemary O’Neill, History of Design & Curatorial Studies;
Caroline Dionne, Design Studies;
Rachel Lifter, Fashion Studies

Program Contact

Caroline Dionne, Program Director

Program Update

Parsons is not currently admitting new students to this master’s degree program. Parsons is now offering a Graduate Minor in Design Studies that is designed to complement the MA History of Design and Curatorial Studies and other graduate programs across the university in design, liberal arts, and social research.