Design is creation; but now it must become re-creation. Design for Wellbeing is design for health and happiness, and Re-Creative Design, driven by the same urge, is a renewal, a ‘re-think’ of ourselves, our environment – both built and natural - and our attitudes towards it. Without Renewal, there is no Wellbeing. Our health and our planet’s, matched with the pace and extent of digital technology, force us to re-examine our priorities, redefine what is important, rebuild our relationship with nature, re-assess our vision of what is beautiful – and re-create the way we live, work and play.
‘Re-create’ means recreation, rest, refreshment. As we engage with the new imperatives of survival, we seek psychological and spiritual nourishment. Our homes, workplaces and public spaces must reflect this quality, give us a sense of value. As part of this change, we shift our understanding of Luxury to something which feeds the mind and soul as well as the body. It has a direct relationship to the authenticity and innate nobility of craft and craftsmanship, a rediscovered language of materials, the reassurance of connection – to our true selves, to each other, to the natural world.
At the same time, digital technology is driving our world and our behaviour in ever more powerful ways. The point where this pervasive energy meets our basic human motivation to renew and re-create, and to work in harmony with nature rather than exploit it, is the new focus for design. Yes, Design can indeed save the world, because re-designing ourselves and our attitudes is designing our Wellbeing.
In less than half a generation Design Shanghai has established itself as the world leader in innovative thought and design practice. In 2022 we push the boundaries yet further. That’s what you expect, because that’s what we do. Join us in Shanghai in June and work with us to explore Re-Creative Design, to design and build a new global Wellbeing.
——Aidan Walker, Design Shanghai Forum Programme Director