Monday, April 06, 2015

Senior Design Factory

(PHOTO: Senior Factory Design) Benjamin Moser (2nd from left) and Debora Biffi
(2nd from right) founded the Senior Design Factory to bring old and young people together.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Each week, we feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United’s endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

This week’s cool idea is the Senior Design Factory, based in Zurich, Switzerland. The company’s centerpiece is the ‘Atelier’, or studio, where young designers work together with older adults who have craft skills.

(Check our archives for parts 1-39.)

The Senior Design Factory, founded by Debora Biffi and Benjamin Moser, pursues the objective of bringing together old and young persons as partners of equal value, and encouraging communication between the generations through engagement in creative projects.

(PHOTO: Senior Factory Design) Click the image to enlarge.
It highlights new ways in which older people can be linked in with everyday living, and their resources and talents used intelligently.

(Read the March 23 New York Times article on the Senior Design Factory.)

Design plays a central part in this project, functioning as a mediator and building bridges between the generations on the social and creative planes.

The centerpiece is the 'Atelier' or studio, where young designers work together with senior citizens who have craft skills.

The 'Shop' then markets the products they have created.

The 'Kitchen' restaurant is designed to be a cross-generational meeting place, and the 'Workshops' serve for the exchange and transfer of knowledge between young and old. 

(PHOTO: Senior Factory Design)
Debora Biffi and Benjamin Moser studied Style & Design at the Zurich University of the Arts.

In 2008, they developed the Senior Design project as a diploma study, working with retired people and the young and linking up the ideas and abilities of the generations.

The project met with an enthusiastic response, and continues to do so. Senior Design is now established as a charitable organisation.

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to #cooligideas? You can also post them to our Intergenerational Connections Facebook Group. We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter! Share the inspiration.

No comments: