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Kimberlie Birks with Lora Appleton, "Design for Children"

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SVA MA Design Research, Writing and Criticism

136 W 21 Street, Second Floor

New York, NY 10011

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Far beyond mere toys and objects, the things with which we surround our children both form and define their world. Design for Children: Play, Ride, Learn, Eat, Create, Sit, Sleep is a compendium of thoughtful and beautiful products conceived especially for the youngest members of society. This global survey presents over 450 timeless, innovative and aesthetically exceptional children’s objects created over the last century by industry pioneers such as Gerrit Rietveld, Marcel Breuer, Jean Prouvé, Alvar Aalto and Charles and Ray Eames, to contemporary trailblazers like Naoto Fukasawa, Philippe Starck, Nendo, Marc Newson, Kengo Kuma and Marcel Wanders. Together, they stand as testament to the importance of design for children, and provide a thought-provoking look at the ways in which we shape the world for future generations. Author Kimberlie Birks will discuss the project with contributor and kinder MODERN founder Lora Appleton, in a conversation moderated by Lila Allen of Metropolis Magazine.

Kimberlie Birks writes about art and design and is the author of Design for Children, published by Phaidon in Fall 2018. Born in Montreal, she studied art history at Brown University and is an alumna of the Design Criticism program at the School of Visual Arts, where she wrote a graduate thesis on playground design. Her writing has been featured in Dwell, Domus, Metropolis, Azure and The Architect's Newspaper.

Lora Appleton is the founder of kinder MODERN, the only gallery worldwide specializing in the collection and selling of contemporary and historical children’s furniture. Appleton is also the principal designer at studiokinder, kinder MODERN’s in-house design studio which produces sophisticated, yet functional, furniture and rugs, as well as commissioned public spaces, for children of all ages. She additionally serves as the publisher and editor-in-chief of KINDER, a quarterly journal exploring children’s design of the past, present and future through pedagogy and materiality. Under Appleton’s curatorial guidance, kinder MODERN has grown from an entrepreneurial gallery into a robust design authority, further paving the way for her establishment of the Female Design Council in 2016.


This lecture is followed by a short Q&A, book signing, and drinks reception, where you can take the opportunity to chat with our speaker as well as students and faculty of the program. This lecture free and open to the public, but you must RSVP to attend.

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SVA MA Design Research, Writing and Criticism

136 W 21 Street, Second Floor

New York, NY 10011

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