Made in Brunel, the annual showcase of innovative design talent emerging from Brunel University London, is moving online this month as part of the London Design Festival – the spotlight on the capital's creative brilliance.
The virtual world is this year's home for the final-year projects from the talented students who've just finished their design studies at Brunel: undergraduates, masters and PhD students. Unable to complete their physical models in the workshops on campus because of the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown, the students collaborated with their academic supervisors to create high-quality digital models.
The photos, videos and stories will be featured on a new Made in Brunel Instagram page alongside 'elevator pitches' that explain the real-world problems the students have tackled and the benefits of their innovative and gorgeously designed solutions.
The more than 140 projects include a gamified way to help people recover from knee surgery, a personal air purifier for commuters, and a robot that cleans up plastic pollution from canals.
Previous years' exhibitions have launched the careers of entrepreneurial designers such as Solveiga Pakštaitė, who created an award-winning food expiry label, and Ehab Sayed, who founded BIOHM to create insulation panels from mushroom-based waste – and have seen other students snapped up by companies keen to employ them.
Several of the projects are in collaboration with local and national organisations, such as Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, Timberland, military and first responder protection experts Avon Protection, and Sayed's BIOHM, all of whom benefit from the students' savvy solutions.
"2020 has been a very different year for this cohort of final-year students. But our strong culture of collaboration between students and staff made all the difference, and this year's online exhibition – part of the prestigious London Design Festival – is a fitting way to celebrate the achievements and potential of what are now our new design graduates," said Dr Vanja Garaj, Brunel's Head of Design.
"As always, the exhibition is a student-led endeavour, with the very efficient Made in Brunel team also producing a book to present the best of our collaborative efforts in these challenging times."
Running from 12 to 20 September, the London Design Festival brings together the greatest thinkers, practitioners, retailers and educators to celebrate and promote design across London, which has the largest creative economy of any city in the world, with an internally renowned designed reputation to match. With the pandemic having disproportionately affected the creative industries, this year's online festival will help to stimulate the creative economy and support young and emerging designers as well as more established names.
Made in Brunel launches at 10:00 UK time on Saturday 12 September with a free online event open to all, including the launch of the 'We are Made in Brunel' book. Registration is open now.
Find out more about Design at Brunel
Joe Buchanunn, Media Relations
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