At Urgent.Agency we are engaged in knowledge sharing and knowledge production often with a very practical, hands-on approach. ‘Urgent.Practice – Culture design and design culture in the 21st century’ is part of this ambition and an introduction to our culture design practice.
We call our practice culture design – but what exactly does that mean? We begin by exploring the concept and practice, sharing our thoughts and methods – frankly and honestly. We explore our own hybrid practice of culture and design methodology. With this backdrop, we explore three main obsessions of Urgent – building culture, creating places and designing identity – in a melange of professional reflections, methods and tools that inspire us. We mix our own reflections and cases with insights from some of our heroes and collaborators, including Hunter Tura from Bruce Mau Design (US), Martin Gran from Snøhetta (NO) and Carla Hjort from SPACE10/ArtRebels (DK).
What we have assembled in this book is not a final statement. We share reflections about what happens as we work – both specifically in our field of design, placemaking and cultural transformations, and in the world in general. And we have used the occasion to express some quite practical information about how we work – and what we believe to be the best practice. We hope you, our potential reader, will see why we believe that it is urgent to explore these borderlands.
“An essential component when understanding culture – whether it is understanding the social exchanges at a festival, the clashes of cultures in a company merger, or a film – is engaging in an interpretation of what you have in front of you. This interpretation entails a certain level of curiosity, empathy and imagination.”
“By insisting on human experience and curiosity – and fusing practices from a variety of skilled people – we can, in fact,come up with more creative, more humane, more meaningful solutions to the urgent challenges of today and tomorrow.”
We are very thankful to the Danish Arts Foundation for their generous support that made the book possible.
Ricky Storm Braskov
Emilie Holm Sandholdt
Cecilie Kirkeskov Knudsen
Mads Christian Sandholm