Change Lab: Conversations on Transformation and Creativity

Change Lab: Conversations on Transformation and Creativity

ArtCenter College of Design’s bi-weekly podcast features intimate interviews with leading artists examining the ideas fueling their work and how the creative process can be a catalyst for change—personally, professionally and globally. Hosted by ArtCenter President, Lorne M. Buchman, these conversations examine the many ways in which artists and designers are enriching our lives. ArtCenter College of Design is a global leader in art and design education; and our mission statement—Learn to create. Influence change—lies at the center of all we do.

Episodes

May 18, 2022 41 min
When we first heard from Jackie Amezquita four years ago, she was an ArtCenter Fine Art student on the cusp of graduating. In a raw and revealing interview, she traced the arduous path she’d walked to find the stability she needed to risk everything for her art.  Her remarkable journey (captured in E14 of Change Lab) began in her native Guatemala, where surging violence and poverty had forced Jackie’s mother to migrate to the Unit...
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Aimee Mullins is a true polymath. Her passions and professional pursuits are as varied and boundless as the awards and groundbreaking strides she’s achieved within her many chosen fields. She broke new ground in athletics as the first amputee in history to compete against able-bodied athletes in the NCAA’s Division 1 track and field events. She went on to set records in the 100 and 200 meter races and the long jump. Her poise and a...
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We’re lucky as artists that we can recover much faster because we can express. Nature recovers and we recover.  Lita Albuquerque is an artist whose body of work has often defied the strictures of convention and, ultimately, canvas. Over the course of her celebrated career, her paintings and sculptures outgrew the traditional materials contained within her studio and expanded to inhabit the land and people around her.  To experience...
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Client hypothetical. This is the term pioneering architect and designer Eileen Gray used to classify the many Modernist masterpieces she designed in the absence of actual paid commissions. She was simply making things because that was what she was made to do.  Gray now stands alongside other towering talents whose under-recognized body of work were later exalted by their artworld peers. First among Gray’s admirers is artist Kim Sch...
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James Meraz joined the faculty of ArtCenter’s Environmental Design department in September of 2001, shortly before 9/11. In the wake of that tragedy he wavered about how to proceed with his planned curriculum. How would it all be relevant? In the end, he resolved to lean into the uncertainty of that “cataclysmic moment,” realizing that the only way out of the pain, chaos and confusion was to go through it.  Above all he discovered ...
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The next season of Change Lab debuts on March 23. We’re calling it Forged in Fire: Make to Heal and we’re looking at the ways in which adversity can be a conduit for creativity and, more importantly, how creativity can offer solace during the hardest of times.  You’re not going to want to miss a single episode of a season that explores the connection between heartbreak and hope on the path toward resilience and reinvention.  Please...
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As Google’s vice president of hardware design, Ivy Ross is breaking new ground in the physical world for a trillion-dollar company synonymous with building tools for navigating the virtual one. Since assuming the role in 2014, she’s been tasked with translating a corporate identity consisting of a primary colored logo and blinking cursor into three-dimensional products and environments that are inviting, accessible and add value to...
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In the two decades since she graduated from ArtCenter with a degree in Transportation Design, Tisha Johnson has blazed trails for female design leaders in industries dominated by men. Her success has been propelled by her genuine passion for each phase of the design process, from research to experimenting with materials to aligning aesthetic beauty with human need.  The results of her efforts are written into her ever-evolving care...
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For novelist Aimee Bender, magic is not a limited resource. Nor is it something to be feared, coveted, mistrusted or monetized. In her view, rather, magic is an everyday occurrence woven into the fabric of our lives captured in fleeting moments of transcendence all too often overlooked.  No wonderment, however small, seems to escape Aimee’s notice. And as her readers can attest, her comfort with uncanny occurrences can be found thr...
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To experience one of Ann Hamilton’s installations is to be transported into a world of invention unlike any other. Recognized for her large-scale public projects and performance collaborations, Ann uses space as her canvas and fills it with a sense of mystery and drama that is as inviting as it is provocative.  Though much of her work is, by nature, transitory, its impact and ideas endure. To get a sense of the experiential texture...
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To call Mike Shinoda a rock star would be technically accurate and yet incomplete. He is the lead singer and driving force behind Linkin Park (one of the best selling bands of the 21st century), Fort Minor (his hip hop project) and a thriving career as a solo artist. But that list of headlining achievements doesn’t even begin to capture the scope of his creative versatility.  He’s always been a creative omnivore since his days as ...
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For Diana Thater making art is like oxygen. It sustains and nourishes her. And when her access to it is suddenly limited -- as it was in the spring of 2020-- she figures out a way to create her art. By any means necessary.  Her latest exhibition, Yes, There Will Be Singing, is the captivating result of one such extraordinary pandemic pivot. She conceived the idea for the sound-based installation when her in-person show was cancelle...
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September 2, 2021 2 min
Pop quiz: Do artists and designers create to express what you know? Or do we make things to get to know ourselves and the world we inhabit?  Those are a few of the questions we’ll be grappling with throughout the next season of Change Lab, launching on September 29th, with Lorne’s revelatory interview with Mike Shinoda, artist, musician, ArtCenter alum, and rockstar in all senses of the word. This season coincides with the release ...
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Erika Endrijonas isn’t just an advocate for the pivotal role community colleges play in providing equal access to the American Dream. She is also an alum of Cal State Northridge and direct beneficiary of California’s longstanding commitment to affordable higher education for all. As such, she has an intrinsic understanding of the system’s value to society. And in her current position as the Superintendent and President of Pasadena ...
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There are many apt metaphors for Carol Christ’s achievements. Most of them have to do with breaking things like glass ceilings or barriers or new ground in Victorian literary scholarship. But none of those do justice to the sheer scope of the professional arc Carol has traversed en route to her current role as the first female Chancellor of UC Berkeley.  Carol has spent the better part of her five decades entering academic spaces a...
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As President of Fuller Theological Seminary (with more than three decades of pastoral experience behind him), Mark Labberton is more than comfortable dwelling in uncertainty. For him, the space of the unknown is at least one way to access the kind of epiphany familiar to those of us on the creative path.  Mark is far more than just a big picture thinker and leader. He’s a prolific writer and orator with a unique gift for mining th...
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Dan Brodnitz didn’t set out to join a revolution in online education. He saw himself changing hearts and minds through his novels and poetry. Fate, however, had a different plan for Dan’s talents — but one no less transformative. It placed him at the helm of global content strategy at LinkedIn Learning at a time when the entire world migrated into digital classrooms. Never has his expertise in creating meaningful virtual learning e...
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Harry Elam and Lorne had only met casually before we sat down to record this episode of Change Lab. Interestingly, they had spent much of their early careers as two ships passing in the San Francisco Bay. Harry pursued his PhD in theater at U.C. Berkeley while Lorne earned the same degree at Stanford. They then traded places and Harry became a theater professor at Stanford and Lorne took a faculty position in Berkeley’s Dramatic Ar...
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D’Wayne has a lot in common with Michael Jordan, his former boss. His appetite for excellence has propelled him to superlative success. D’Wayne turned his childhood passion for drawing sneakers into a high-flying design career, moving from L.A. Gear to Sketchers and then eventually landing his dream job at Nike’s Jordan Brand. D’Wayne’s designs have, in total, earned over $1.5 billion. But D’Wayne was determined to leave a mark on ...
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As we begin a new year and a new season of change lab, I think most of us are torn between looking forward with hope and looking back with a kind of weary amazement we've prevailed over enormous obstacles in the last year. But as educators and designers, we know all too well that every challenge we meet offers an opportunity for learning and progress. That was certainly the case here at ArtCenter, where we migrated along with t...
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