About Fair Design


In 2015, the Warsaw Academy of Fine Arts started to organize a series of conferences dedicated to the theory and criticism of design in terms of its functioning in the quickly changing social, cultural, economic and other circumstances. The conference is intended to serve as a forum for discussions which could stretch beyond the professional designer circles.

Such opinion exchange, ongoing in the world for quite some time now, is an opportunity for design theoreticians and practitioners to better understand the objectives, methods and strategy of designing both today, and in the nearest future. The notion of design is ever more often perceived in terms of a “design culture”, and for that reason the discussions have come to involve a whole range of specialists from other disciplines, such as philosophy, sociology, economics, or anthropology of culture. In Poland, however, such debate is still virtually non-existent, and the opinion exchange platform is limited to publications in academic and professional press, as well as popular weeklies or dailies. These texts are rarely exposed to a differing reflection or solid criticism, hence they do not provoke any genuine intellectual exchange, nor do they help shape a complex set of opinions on the state of the design today.

In light of the above, the series of FAIR DESIGN conferences, dedicated to design theory and criticism, could trigger a debate on defining or applying research tools for the description and analysis of the changes taking place in contemporary design. We hope that such meetings could help in the opinion exchange among theoreticians representing different disciplines and design practitioners. We expect the theoreticians to provide us with a description of the state of contemporary society from the viewpoint of the humanities and social sciences (including those dealing with design theory), while from the practitioners we expect to share with us their thoughts on their own experiences of designing in the unstable world of today. We invite to the conference both, design professionals, as well as people representing the art world, philosophers, anthropologists, or economists. We would expect our guests to share with us their thoughts on the quickly changing relations in culture, politics, the society and – obviously – in design. The papers are delivered in Polish and English (with simultaneous interpretation).


Department of Design History and Theory, Faculty of Design, Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw

The Faculty of Design, Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, is one of the most important design schools in Poland, specializing in teaching product design, visual communication and fashion design. The subjects of study are diverse, and include applied art and design issues in modern and advanced technologies that are up to date or ahead of their time. The curriculum of the Faculty includes also research projects, focused on current problems of our civilization. All the hands-on design activities are assisted by the Dept. of Design History and Theory. Its mission is to educate on history, theory and criticism of design by organizing seminars, lectures, exhibitions, consultations and by conducting MFA theses. The Faculty of Design, Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, was ranked #13 in the Red Dot Design Ranking 2013: Universities in Americas and Europe.

Programme Board

Prof. Bruce Brown, Royal College of Art in London (Great Britain)
Bruce Brown is Visiting Professor at the Royal College of Art in London. Previously he was Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of Brighton, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities and Professor of Design. He was selected by the Funding Councils for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales to chair the Main Panel responsible for Arts and Humanities in the UK Research Excellence Framework 2014. He recently has worked for organizations in Austria, Portugal, Hong Kong, and Israel and lectured widely on research in the arts. He is an editor of Design Issues Research Journal and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Prof. Prot Jarnuszkiewicz / Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw
He studied at the Faculty of Cinematography and Television Production at the Leon Schiller National Higher School of Film, Television and Theatre in Lodz, Poland, with a specialisation in film, television and photography. Professor of fine arts. Dean of the Faculty of Media Art at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw in 2016-2020. He runs the Visual Relations Studio at this Faculty. He works creatively in two fields – artistic photography and directing light and video projections in theatre performances. Since 2007, he has cooperated with, among others, Teatr Rozmaitości, Teatr Wielki – National Opera and National Theatre in Warsaw, as well as with Teatr Nowy in Poznań and Teatr im. Juliusz Słowacki in Kraków. Author of numerous publications, including three monographs. He was awarded the Bronze Medal „Gloria Artis” for Merit to Culture. (2016). His works are in several dozen private collections and museums in Poland and abroad.

Dr. Katarzyna Kasia / Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw
Philosopher, graduated at the Faculty of Philosophy and Sociology of Warsaw University, granted with the scholarships of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Italian Republic and of the Kosciuszko Foundation, visiting scholar at Princeton University. Deputy Dean of the Department of Visual Culture Management, Chair in Art Theory at Warsaw Academy of Fine arts. Author of the book “Formative Craft. Luigi Pareyson’s aesthetics of formativity”, translator of the texts of the Italian philosophers (Pareyson, Vattimo and others).

Dr. hab. Magda Kochanowska / Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw
A designer by education, she is also the author of numerous publications on design in specialist and popular magazines. She has been affiliated with the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw Faculty of Industrial Design since 2005, where she works as an assistant professor. She defended her PhD in 2010. For many years she was an editor for the 2+3D design quarterly. In 2011-12 she lectured at Universidad Europea de Madrid. She explores design theory, criticism, and methodologies. She has made Polish and international exhibition designs both in Poland and abroad. In 2014 she created Polish Job – an exhibition of Polish design for Design Week in Milan. She was the general curator for the Polish design presentation at the Second Design Biennial in Istanbul in 2014. In 2016 she made the exhibition of Polish design for the 21st Triennale di Milano.
Contact: magda.kochanowska@asp.waw.pl

Dr. Józef A. Mrozek / Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw
He has worked for the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw since 1978; until 2004 in the Interdepartmental History and Theory of Art Chair, from 2005 to 2016 he was head of the History and Theory of Design Chair in the Faculty of Design. He has lectured at many foreign academies, chiefly in the USA and in Great Britain. In 1999-2003 he was editor-in-chief of Meble Plus magazine, and contributed to the 2+3D grafika plus produkt quarterly. He has written numerous publications on industrial design, applied arts, and architecture. He is a member of the Society of Art Historians and the Design History Society.

Dr. hab. Monika Murawska / Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw
She graduated in philosophy and art history from the University of Warsaw, where she mainly explored film history. She studied at Université Paris X Nanterre and Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. In 2008 she defended her PhD at the University of Warsaw on contemporary French phenomenology. She is a three-times French Government scholarship winner, secretary of the Przegląd Filozoficzno – Literacki board of editors, and a member of the Polish Phenomenology Society. She translates from French. Her writings include Problem innego [The Problem of the Other, 2005] and Filozofowanie z zamkniętymi oczami [Philosophizing with Eyes Closed, 2011] as well as numerous articles on the phenomenology of art.

Prof. Michał Stefanowski / Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw
He is a designer of products, small architectural forms, packaging, information systems, and visual communication. He is presently part of the INNO+NPD design team. He has created or jointly created the designs for dozens of products, five information systems, and numerous graphic and image designs. He co-designed the Municipal Information System in Warsaw, information systems for the University of Warsaw Library and the Royal Castle in Warsaw, and the visual ID for the Polish National Bank. He has written articles on industrial design, curated exhibitions, and has been a juror at competitions. He is the Vice Chair of the SPFP (Industrial Designers’ Association), and a member of the BEDA (Bureau of European Design Association) board. He is a member of the Work Group for the Ministry of the Economy, 19 National Intelligence Specialization. He has been a consultant for the European Commission and the Head of the Faculty of Design at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw.

Prof. Susan Yelavich
Professor emerita, long-time Director of the MA Design Studies program in the School of Art and Design History and Theory at Parsons The New School for Design. She has also taught at Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti, Milan, Italy, and The New School’s Democracy & Diversity Institute in Wroclaw, Poland. She explores the parallels between design and literature and the relationship between textiles and architecture. Yelavich is the author of numerous articles and books, including Design as Future-Making (2014), Contemporary World Interiors (2007), Pentagram/Profile (2004), Inside Design Now (2003), Design for Life (1997), and The Edge of the Millennium: An International Critique of Architecture, Urban Planning, Product and Communication Design (1993). She was a Fellow of the American Academy in Rome (2003-2004), and the assistant director for public programs at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York.



FAIR DESIGN 2015 – Activity / Activity
FAIR DESIGN 2018 – Excess / Excess
FAIR DESIGN 2023 – Emotions / Emotions


redakcja naukowa dr Katarzyna Kasia, dr Magda Kochanowska,
Wydawnictwo Akademia Sztuk Pięknych w Warszawie, 2018, ISBN 978-83-66098-16-9 [PDF]

redakcja naukowa dr Katarzyna Kasia, dr Magda Kochanowska,
Wydawnictwo Akademia Sztuk Pięknych w Warszawie, 2017,  ISBN 978-83-65455-65-9 [PDF]