London-based designer awarded Robert Garland Treseder Fellowship for 2018

London-based artist, designer and consultant Adam Peacock has been awarded the 2018 Robert Garland Treseder Fellowship.

Instigated in 2017 by Creative Futures in partnership with the Melbourne School of Design, the Fellowship enables artists, business innovators, designers, policy leaders, start-ups, architects and scholars with a dedication to the development and promotion of design-based innovation to visit Melbourne.

Adam’s work specialises in defining the twenty-first-century technology integrated human that exists behind the consumer of today.

He works with architects, designers, brands, companies, research labs, publications, galleries and educational institutes to ask the right questions and create frameworks necessary for future related design.

His project Genetics Gym, is currently on show as part of Science Gallery Melbourne’s PERFECTION experiment | exhibition, a provocative and diverse exploration of the human desire for perfection in a non-perfect world.

Genetics Gym attempts to uncover the consumer psychology behind how and why we might want to change ourselves if we had the ability to do so through the lens of genetic technology and artificial intelligence. The project is a collaboration between Adam’s studio, UCL's Human Genetics and Embryology department, and London College of Fashion’s Applied Psychology in Fashion department.

“It's an interesting moment to be a designer, economically speaking”, says Adam,“I believe the most relevant contemporary architects and designers of our time will not just design the buildings, objects, clothes, cars we use, but the technological infrastructures that we inhabit, psychologically and culturally.”

“When we start to confront these design realms, it’s important to have the perspective to understand that what you might consider perfect, ideal or utopian might well be another person's dystopia. This is particularly interesting when you start to consider the possibilities of synthetic biology, genome editing, and artificial intelligence. I believe that these conversations, through architectural and design processes will be some of the most important design challenges of our time.”

As part of his visit to Melbourne, Adam will work directly with Master of Architecture students to explore new design perspectives from the student’s own cultures, interests, and specialisms. “Architecture students are great to work with because of the dexterity involved in architectural design processes. In order to design a building, you need to juggle so many different considerations of high level-complexity, moving between both conceptual and technical outputs. Architectural methodology allows for very ambitious projects to be embraced”, explains Adam, “beyond learning the technical intricacies of a specific discipline, all new design problems require cross-disciplinary, and highly strategic thinking; and that actually the ‘safety’ of disciplines in some cases might hold a designer back from really achieving the best-designed outcome.”

Whilst in Melbourne, Adam will present the Treseder Fellowship Lecture titled “Perfection & Speculation – The Validation Junky” where he will discuss the strategy, design, and process of the Genetics Gym project, the ideology behind his design studio including ‘The Validation Junky’ lens, and discuss the new and future roles for contemporary design practice, questioning what it might mean to be a relevant designer in 2018/19.
Register to attend the lecture here.

Image: genetically modified bodies as part of the Genetics Gym exhibit

Adam Peacock is a Lecturer of Design Strategy and Future Related Design at London College of Fashion for MA Fashion Futures. He holds a Foundation in Art & Architecture from Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London (UAL), a BSc. in Architecture from The Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London (UCL) and an MA in Design Interactions from the Royal College of Art (RCA).