We exhibited at the London Design Festival 2018

A selection of Master theses developed at Politecnico di Milano, School of Design, was presented in Design < > Research, an exhibition of two new research centres at the Royal College of Art, during the London Design Festival 2018. The exhibition launched two new research centres to the public for the first time and showcased the latest innovations from the newly formed Burberry Material Futures Research Group and the Intelligent Mobility Design Centre. 

The selected projects are the results of an on-going research on DIY materials. Derived from waste resources and embracing Circularity and self-actualization, the selected materials arise as future sustainable materials and are enabling sustainable future consumer experiences. 

Projects by: Helga Aversa, Karen Estefanía Rodríguez Daza, Valeria Munda, and Salvatore Dario Panico. Tutored by Dr. Valentina Rognoli, Camilo Ayala Garcia and Stefano Parisi, at Politecnico di Milano, School of Design.

Vote for "Mine the City!" to be in SXSW 2019

Our workshop "Mine the City!" in collaboration with Border Sessions is now on public vote to be part of SXSW 2019 Festival, in Austin, Texas.

What if we can create new materials out of what seems to be waste, but are actually resources? Facilitated by the Materials Experience Lab and a collective of Japanese designers, in this workshop we explore opportunities in a circular economy through DIY materials. Introduced by Valentina Rognoli and her colleagues in 2015, DIY-Materials are created through individual or collective self-production experiences, as a result of a process of tinkering with materials. After an introduction by Camilo Ayala Garcia from Materials Experience Lab, you will go out to mine the city: find a potential resource of urban waste, which can be transferred into a potential material for product applications. This workshop is part of an emerging movement that started at Border Sessions in The Hague in 2018.

Here you can read the full proposal and cast your vote after registration:


MDD Master Class for Professionals

2-Day Master Class for Professionals, on June 20 and 21 at TUDelft, Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering. 

How do we design (with) materials? How do we design for material experiences with a material as a departure point in the design process? How do we transfer a material into a meaningful product application? How do we know it is ‘the application’? How can we bring forward a unique quality of a material?

Mine the City Lab: 2-Day MATTERathon

In 2015, the average European used 16 tonnes of materials. Our demand for materials is intense. As an activist reaction to the accelerating degradation of the environment due to this high demand for material use, more and more designers act as ‘active maker’ of materials rather than ‘passive recipient’. Accordingly, anything tangible could be a resource for DIY-material makers, including materials which mobilize sources we (the society) consider as waste, such as domestic and industrial waste, and discarded sources or by-products from food or raw material production which most of the time appear invisible to us.

We invite you to join us to explore ‘Dutch ways of living’ as a resource for DIY-Materials tinkering in the ‘Mine the City Lab’ 2-Day MATTERathon at Border Sessions - Tech Culture Festival,  June 15th and 16th 2018.

Here you can find the full call:


Renewable Matter features the course Designing Materials Experiences

Renewable Matter, international magazine on the Bioeconomy and the Circular Economy, has featured the course Designing Materials Experiences in the article “Thinking with our hands” by Barbara Pollini and Francesca Maccagnan. The article describes relevant experiences of leading Italian and European universities in encouraging their students to experiment with innovative materials with a hands-on approach and to assess their environmental impact. The collection includes Designing Materials Experiences, a successful elective course led by Dr. Valentina Rognoli with the assistance of Camilo Ayala Garcia and Stefano Parisi in the Design School of Politecnico di Milano.

Here you can find the complete online article:


DIY-Materials at Design x Designers, Milan Design Week 2018

A selection of results of the course Designing Materials Experiences and related Master’s thesis developed at Politecnico di Milano are showcased in the exhibition Design x Designers 2018. In this exhibition, we present DIY-Materials as the outcomes of a practice of materials self-production using unconventional resources and techniques. These materials allow students to shape materials experiences, enable social changes and encourage material speculation about future scenarios, practices, models and aesthetics.

Visit us at the Design School of Politecnico di Milano, in Via Candiani 72, Milan (building B2), from April 10 to May 2, 2018. 

Download the press material here.

ICS Materials Seminars and Lectures at Politecnico di Milano

ICS Materials: Discovering and Defining Interactive, Connected, and Smart materials is a cycle of open seminars and lectures we have organized in the scope of the project ICS Materials at Politecnico di Milano, Department of Design, and concluded in the last weeks of 2017.

By involving experts from education and practice in the fields of Design, New Materials and Interaction, we aimed to encourage the discussion and share experiences and insights on Interactive, Connected and Smart Materials. We devoted each of the dates to a specific theme, with the aim of framing the State of the Art through methodologies, case studies, and previous researches, and on exploring future scenarios for ICS Materials. A special thank to all the guest speakers who made this cycle unique.

Materials Today Features an Interview about Materials Experience Lab

Materials Today, one of the most prestigious communities dedicated to the creation and sharing of materials science knowledge and experience, supported by Elsevier, has featured the Materials Experience Lab with an interview of the coordinator Dr. Elvin Karana.

Here you can find other pictures of the complete interview:


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We presented DIY Materials at the Materials Farm 2017 - Barcelona

A selection of the results from the course “Designing Materials Experiences” (link of the course page to add) at Politecnico di Milano, School of Design, was presented in "The Materials Farm" by Materfad. The materials were presented in a talk and are now showcased in an exhibition at the Design Hub Barcelona, from 26/06/2017 to 21/09/2017. These actions were part of  the program of the FADfest 2017, the biggest festival about Design and Arts in Barcelona.

The selected projects are the results of an on-going research on DIY materials, in the scope of unfolding their qualities and aesthetics, and novel practices and scenarios around them. Most of these self-produced and open materials are made from waste resources and have social and sustainable purposes.

Here you can find other pictures of the exhibition and the talk.

Projects by: Ioanna Oikonomou, Marina Psimikaki, Yang Yudan, Marta Ziminska, Eileen Krüger, Valeria Munda, Setareh Salehi, Juuso Koski, Dicle Aslan, Dinullah Bayu Ibrahim, Shao Yizhuo, Betul Unal.

Valentina Rognoli talked about Materials Experience - video interview

Materials Experience and some related on-going projects have been presented by Dr. Valentina Rognoli in an interview by the Department of Design, Politecnico di Milano.

"The materials experiences which are currently emerging in the contemporary world concern two phenomena which have recently become established and which are continuing to develop: DIY Materials, i.e. Do It Yourself, and ICS Materials, i.e. Interactive, Connected, and Smart".