Debora Biffi, Benjamin Moser
'Senior Design Factory'
The Senior Design Factory pursues the objective of bringing together old and young persons as partners of equal value, and encouraging communication between the generations through engagement in creative projects. It highlights new ways in which older people can be linked in with everyday living, and their resources and talents used intelligently. Design plays a central part in this project, functioning as a mediator and building bridges between the generations on the social and creative planes. The centrepiece is the 'Atelier' or studio, where young designers work together with senior citizens who have craft skills. The 'Shop' then markets the products they have created. The 'Kitchen' restaurant is designed to be a cross-generational meeting place, and the 'Workshops' serve for the exchange and transfer of knowledge between young and old.
Debora Biffi and Benjamin Moser studied Style & Design at the Zurich University of the Arts. In 2008 they developed the Senior Design project as a diploma study, working with retired people and the young and linking up the ideas and abilities of the generations. The project met with an enthusiastic response, and continues to do so. Senior Design is now established as a charitable organisation.
Comments of the Nominators:
A convincing concept, in that it is contemporary and realistic, beneficial and effectively executed. The wave of interest in the press seems well justified, since the idea is harmonious and shows careful thought and commitment.
Comments by the Jury:
Senior Design Factory is definitely the favourite project of the jury of DPS 2011. Undoubtedly this is in part the result of the attractively simple and modest products that have been used. These are the perfect response to the demand for a design for the common man. A more important aspect in the eyes of the jury, however, is the exemplary way in which the project places a central emphasis on the social dimension of design. In addition to this, Senior Design Factory illustrates important new themes – design as group work, for example, and design as a tool for bringing about social change.