Projects

Lerival (2009-2011)

Client

lerival is a DESIGN HOUSE that bridges contemporary furniture and architecture and brokers relationships to the most current and relevant architecture talent. Lerival manufactures furniture based on the exploration of innovative techniques, and with rigorous attention to details and new materials. Lerival champions CONTEMPORARY ARCHITECTURE’s advanced design sensibility, inspired by a versatile modularity, personality-driven forms and high performance.

Project

Working in close collaboration with lerival, futureflair operates as the in-house BRANDING & STRATEGIC PLANNING ARM, involved in both active, deliverable-oriented initiatives and longer-term developmental goals. In practice, futureflair responds to lerival’s needs with regard to brand management, business development and strategic marketing, while also contributing to and guiding the curatorial direction of the company and its proactive expansion.

Results

Within this ongoing partnership, futureflair has been advising lerival on its branding positioning and strategic development through various means: identifying marketing and promotion opportunities notably with real estate developers; helping produce events that position lerival as one of the new leading American players in contemporary design (tribecaIssey Miyake’s installation and cocktail party in Oct. 2009 and ICFF booth 2010, WantedDesign 2011); refining language for collateral materials and brand narratives (including mission statement, PR material, sales catalog and company website); nurturing new strategic alliances with galleries in Paris, shops and showrooms in the US; assuring media coverage in the US and abroad, as well as cultivating new relations with an expanded pool of architecture talent.

Info

lerival.com


EmpathiCITY, Making our City Together (2013)

Client

The Cité du design, under the auspices of the City of Saint-Etienne (France) and Saint-Etienne Métropole, has been hosting, since 1998, the International Biennial Design Saint-Etienne. For its 8th edition, they commissioned co-curators Laetitia Wolff and Josyane Franc to produce a project that aimed to activate the UNESCO Creative Cities of Design network, which Saint-Etienne joined in 2010, while exploring the general biennale theme, “empathy or the experience of the other”.

Project

“EmpathiCITY, Making our City Together,” is an international exhibition and colloquium, that was inaugurated at the 8th International Biennial Design Saint-Etienne on March 13 and 14, 2013. By inviting the 11 cities of design, members of the UNESCO network (including Buenos Aires, Berlin, Montreal, Nagoya, Kobe, Shenzhen, Seoul, Shanghai, Saint-Etienne, Graz and Beijing) we created a critical survey and engagement strategy to demonstrate the potential of the designer as an empathic intermediary between citizens, communities and municipal governments. The project was inspired by the European programme “Human Cities”, which the Cité du design is part of and by the “expoTENtial” collaborative platform oiginally curated by Laetitia Wolff. Our curatorial aim was to reveal the transformative power of design as a tool for social cohesion in the urban context. In partnership with non-profit organizations, community associations, municipal agencies, the featured designers conceived urban interventions to improve the quality of urban life while fostering social bonds.

Results

The 800 square feet exhibition captured the 11 cities’s diverse identities, over lively and disparate portraits, in addition to featuring case studies of EmpathiCITY projects and a selection of products which alluded to the notion of empathy while celebrating the various designers and industries of the 11 cities of the UNESCO network. Adrien Rovero’s scenography, inspired by the public bench, was setup in the immense building H of the old arm Manufacture of the Cité du design.

The symposium, rallying close to 40 speakers – including designers, urban interventionists, activists, makers, thinkers and mayors – allowed the sharing of experiences among city members of the network, while opening the dialog to other pertinent international practionners of community-based design. Stimulated by the debate of Making our City Together, the 11 mayors of the UNESCO network signed an EmpathiCITY manifesto, promising to commit to community design. 500 Journalists attended the opening ceremony of the biennale in presence of the French Minister of culture, and more than 100,000 exhibition visitors came throughout the duration of the biennale.

Info

• EmpathiCITY on Cité du Design Biennale’s website, click here

• EmpathiCITY on Saint-Etienne Ville Créative de Design facebook page, click here

• “EmpathiCITY in the World,” a special project as part of the exhibition, click here. As the result of an international call for project, we presented a panorama of 30 projects from 12 countries (other than the UNESCO network). All of them convey, often with humor, resourcefulness, and great imagination, design’s potential as a mediator of empathy.

 


Gimme More: is Augmented Reality the Next Medium? (2013)

Client

Founded in 2007, the EPFL+ECAL Lab (www.epfl-ecal-lab.ch) is a unit of the Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, located on the premises of its founding partner ECAL/University of art and design Lausanne. It cooperates on a regular basis with several top design schools such as the Royal College of Art (London) and ENSCI-Les Ateliers (Paris). Its mission is to explore the prospects of technologies emerging from research labs and to open up new fields of action for designers. The EPFL+ECAL Lab conducts numerous projects with industrial partners.

Project

“Gimme More, Is Augmented Reality the Next Medium?” is an exhibition presented at Eyebeam, from February 21- March 2, 2013 that explored the link between the physical and digital worlds via seven augmented reality-based immersive installations. Previous incarnations of the show had travelled to London, Milan, Paris and San Francisco, but the New York project was re-designed in collaboration with SOFTlab studio and public programs conceived and produced by Laetitia Wolff. “Augmented reality allows everyday objects to tell their stories, reveal information and interact with users in real time. What transpires is a radical shift of interdependence between the object and the information it conveys,” explains Nicolas Henchoz, director of the EPFL+ECAL Lab.

Results

Laetitia Wolff coordinated the NY showing of Gimme More and made it a memorable experience for both the hosting venue, Eyebeam, and client EPFL+ECAL Lab, by recruiting top notch creatives to help generate a thought-provoking conversation around AR, and inspire the audience to challenge traditional perceptions and rethink how we generate and use content. The immersive quality of the work on display was echoed by SOFTlab’s scenography, conceived as a cocoon-like environment. Architect Michael Szivos, principal of SOFTlab, brought on Pentagram’s partner Natasha Jen for beautiful exhibition graphics. Over a period of 10 days, the exhibition was viewed by more than 1,650 visitors, the opening night, sponsored by the Swiss Consulate, gathered 500 guests, and the panel conversation moderated by Laetitia Wolff featured some of NYC leading figures in interactive design, art direction, and media culture, including Jonathan Lee, JP Williams and Christine Paul.

Info

For Gimme More on EPFL+ECAL Lab website, click here
For Eyebeam’s press release, click here

 


The Interdisciplinarians (2010-2011)

Client

The Interdisciplinarians is an original, lively and analog platform for conversations addressing contemporary design and art matters, that explores the interconnections of creative disciplines. Co-hosted by Zesty Meyers and Evan Snyderman of R20th C, a leading art+design TriBeCa gallery, and cultural engineer Laetitia Wolff, the dinner is conceived around a themed conversation that is current, engaging, and provocative.

Project

The Interdisciplinarians brings New York thought-leaders in art, architecture and design, cultural generalists and taste-makers coming from diverse backgrounds – culturally, generation-wise, and professionally. Participants are hand-picked to connect to a specific theme conceived for each dinner. The event is also an occasion to honor a special guest represented by the gallery. Participants of our Learn&Play dinner for instance were leaders in the field of gaming, toy design, children education experts who debated of the value of play. The second dinner, entitled The Power of the Hand, was based on an exclusive interview with Brazilian Modernist master Hugo França, followed by a conversation+picnic that gathered leading art and design personalities to discuss França’s work in his absence.

Results

For our first dinner, a collaboration with award-winning photographer Henry Leutwyler and emerging interactive design talent Simeon Poulin enabled us to produce a dynamic photo-collage of the event. It captured the amazing energy of the conversation around the notions of learn and play, the delicious and artful five-course dinner by chef Giacoppo Falai and Renate Müller’s therapeutic toys, a striking example of universal design. For our second dinner conversation, with the collaboration of filmmaker Craig Lowy and SVA Social Documentary MFA program, we produced a documentary film of the conversation, capturing the multifaceted and controversial perception of Brazilian designer Hugo França’s work, the passion triggered by his monumental “cocoon” sculptures around the theme of the handmade in art and design.

Info1

The Interdisplinarians #1, “Learn&Play” collage-film, conceived by Simeon Poulin with Henry Leutwyler photography, can be seen Special thanks to Henry Leutwyler for his gorgeous photography.

Info2

The Interdisciplinarians#2, “Power of the Hand” documentary film, by Craig Lowy, was featured on DesignMiami Design log. It can be seen here


Quel Chantier! City of Montreal colloquium (2014)

Client

Over the past 20 years, the City of Montreal’s Design Bureau has been leading the conversation around design’s role in enhancing our urban quality of life and territorial attractiveness. Through various initiatives such as their Commerce Design award-winning program, open competitions and workshops, international partnerships with UNESCO’s Creative Cities of Design network and public programs, they have fostered a solid culture and practice of design within their administration. Under the aegis of Les Entretiens Jacques Cartier, a platform for cultural exchange between Québec and the Rhône-Alpes region in France, Montreal’s Design Bureau has produced bi-annual urban design colloquia in collaboration with the City of Saint-Etienne.

Project

Following a series of events focused on discussing design’s role in shaping our cities – which I had the honor of moderating and for which I edited various publications – Montreal is inviting me to direct and produce a colloquium that will address design’s potential role in alleviating large construction sites impact. The construction of new transit hubs, underground infrastructure renovations, urban renewal projects and upgrades of downtown pedestrian zones often generate major disruptions in citizens’ quality of life, whether it hampers their mobility, safety, quietness or small businesses’ activity. Can design propose innovative solutions and participate in improving our collective experience of major construction sites, or at least contribute to lessen their negative impact on residents, commerces and visitors’ daily lives.

Results

The colloquium will activate Montreal’s existing networks with UNESCO’s Creative Cities of Design network and the Commerce Design network, inviting them to submit best practices, while opening up an international call for case studies, recruiting amongst designers, urban planners, city government agencies, engineering and construction companies, etc.
The colloquium scheduled October 8-9, 2014 will take place at the Canadian Center for Architecture and be an occasion to share best practices through detailed case studies, and also invite participants in a one-day, participatory and educational workshop to generate ideas for a specific Montreal site (most likely on Sainte-Catherine).

Info

Information et dossier de candidature en Français: ici

Information and submission application in Englishhere