INTERAKCIJE 2004 – 2012 (The Exhibition)



Interakcije workshops from 2004 to 2012 at the Gallery of Croatian Designers Association, Zagreb.


The exhibition shows selected student works designed and developed at the Interaction Design Workshops that have been organized in Split, since 2004, by the Department of Visual Communication Design, Arts Academy. The primary goal is to present the specific methodology and conceptual frame of the workshops, and to initiate the conversation between the participants of the design practice, critique and education in this field.

Interaction design

Interaction design is looking at the relationships between people, technology and society. It is not just about people or the world around them, it is about the interactions between them. Tony Dunne says that the interaction designers are ‘hybrid designers’ that don’t fit in neat categories; they are mixture of designers, researchers, engineers and artists. The interaction design is an approach – a process of designing relationships rather than things. It is a multidisciplinary filed that includes design, psychology, sociology, communication science, anthropology, computer science, engineering, information and communication technologies, architecture and new media arts.


Department of Visual Communications Design (Arts Academy, University of Split) is organizing series of workshops as an introduction to the interaction design in region. The workshops promote the multidisciplinary educational approach that started with the successful Convivio Summer School in Split in 2004.

Educational goal of the workshop is to encourage all participants to go beyond the limits of design definitions, to re-think what design is today and to explore the present design role in the society through the critical design practice. The workshop offers participants the unique experience of multidisciplinary group work and that enables them to perceive design as different way of thinking – reflective, critical and socially-responsible design.

The primary focus of the workshop is not on technology itself, but the wider social implication of emerging technologies. New designers are connecting their researches with other scientific fields: computer science, engineering, sociology, psychology, architecture, and recently with biotech – all for the purpose of critical reflection of the development and the role of technologies in the society.

Also, the purpose of these activities is to define Split and Croatia as a regional centre, in this new and propulsive field of design; the field that has highly growing perspective especially because it is multidisciplinary and has its foundations in new technologies.

Workshop – a place where ideas, people and discipline meet

Themes of the previous workshops were: Communities in Transition; People-Centered Methodology; Public Spaces; Relations between Technology, Interactions and Learning; Invisible Cities, Hybrid Cities and Real Utopias.

Previous workshops were led by well-known international experts from the field of interaction design, coming from the following institutions: Royal Institute of Technology – KTH, Stockholm; Limerick School of Art and Design, University of Limerick; California State University East Bay;  School of Arts and Creative Industries, Edinburgh Napier University; Royal College of Art (RCA), London; Konstfack – University College of Arts, Crafts and Design, Stockholm; Birmingham City University; Coventry University in Design; Swedish Interactive Institute.

So far, 180 students of design attended the workshops – students of visual communications, new media design, interaction and product design, fine arts, architecture, computer science, ICT, film and video, and sociology, all from the major Croatian Universities  and other Universities in the region – University of Ljubljana and Schools of Design in Belgrade and Cetinje.

Also, the workshops have been organized outside Croatia – at the Magdalena Festival of Creative Communications in Maribor (2010 and 2011) and Faculty of Fine Arts, Cetinje, 2011.

Projects were presented at the exhibitions and festivals in the region and awarded at the Biennial exhibition of Croatian design and Zagreb Salon of the Applied Arts and Design.

Critical methodology

Designers today are focusing more on cultural implications of using technologies through the critical designer practice, and not exclusively on the technology itself. Rodgers and Smyth in their book Digital Blur: Creative Practice at the Boundaries of Architecture, Design and Art discuss about the changes in the practice. New generation of practitioners is emerging; they are blurring the boundaries between traditional disciplines (art, engineering, fashion, architecture, etc.). They act at the intersections between art, design and technology.

Critical Design explores new roles, contexts and methods for design in relation to social, cultural and ethical influences of new technologies. This way of thinking about design is opening a new sphere for imagination and redefinition of its relation with the reality. Dunne points out that it is about the paradigm shift – from the technology applications to its implications. It is about the detachment from the commercial design perspective that is market-led, and becomes more concentrated on broader social context.

The critical design and interaction design projects do not represent projects only for today, but for the future that will come. Its opposite is affirmative design: design that reinforces the status quo, whereas critical design of the interactions anticipates the future and at the same time helps to understand and consider today’s world.

Therefore the methodology, applied in these workshops, in time changed its focus from the user-centered design, and participatory design, toward the critical approach. For example, this year’s workshop theme addressed modern utopias which, through the creation of different worlds and social relations actually questioned the current social, technological and cultural relations. By creating imaginary worlds, designing fiction, we question the world we are living in – its values, functions, its metabolism and its inhabitants’ expectations. Imaginary worlds are exceptional source of designers’ inspiration when questioning the future.


Gallery of Croatian Designers Association, Zagreb

“Ajmo Splite: Kaži što misliš!”, Čiribimba, Umashup, BallB, Desktop Olympics, Behind the Corner, The Ball, “Smile! You’re on Candid Camera!”, Na zidu, Čekingrad, Digitalantique, Gosssplit, Brainblender,

Lynne Baillie, Nelly Ben Hayoun, Sara Božanić, Demitrios Kargotis, Oliver Kochta-Kalleinen, Pekko Koskinen, Christina Kral, Marilyn Lennon, Dash Macdonald, Ivica Mitrović, Marc Owens, Gwyan Rhabyt, Erik Sandelin, Michael Smyth, Magnus Torstensson, Tuur Van Balen.

Mirko Andrić, Sarah Baron – Brljević, Luka Bekavac, Ana Bekš, Mia Bogovac, Marko Borota, Marina Bošković, Ana Cveić, Dora Đurkesac, Kateryna Falkovych, Jan Foraus, Adi Franković, Vesna Gabaj, Milica Golubović, Mario Grkinić – Jurjević, Ivan Jelačić, Ivana Jukić, Koraljka Jukić, Marina Jukić, Marija Juza, Damira Kalajžić, Josip Kaloper, Adrijan Karavdić, Jernej Kejžar, Ante Klaić, Branimir Kolarek, Mišo Komenda, Sinna Lindquist, Kristina Lugonja, Špela Majer, Nada Maleš, Stanko Maletić, Marko Marendić, Ena Masić, Ivo Matić, Ivona Mihajlović, Petra Milički, Elena Mirčevska, Nera Nejašmić, Pika Novak, Hristina Papadopulos, Katarina Perić, Vesna Petović, Anthony Phillips, Luka Predragović, Aleksandra Prole, Matija Raos, Joi Roberts, Dina Rudić, Sara Salamon, Ovidiu Sandor, Boris Sekulić, Davor Sikljan, Marina Stančev, Antonija Škugor, Jakov Šuran, Oleg Šuran, Alma Topalović, Klemen Trupej, Ivan Vranjić, Ivor Vrbos, Mia Vučemilović, Damir Zekić.

Interakcije 2004.-2012.