Design and Industry Lecturer Robert Natata recently released a trailer for his short documentary on the University’s Nathan Shapira Design Archive, home to the internationally renowned renowned design scholar, curator and critic’s works and collections.
Connecting Dots explains Shapira’s significance and how design students, professionals and persons have the opportunity learn about issues such as design thinking, sustainability, education, innovation and cultural identity through the archive. The archive contains more than 2,000 design books, articles, files, documents, audio and video footage dating from 1963 to 2008 relative to design curriculum, lectures, seminars and documentaries.
Shapira was a design professor at University of California, Los Angeles, for more than 40 years. He was an authority on design for developing countries, on architecture and design in Los Angeles and on Italian design throughout the United States and Europe. An award-winning practitioner in graphic design, product design, packaging, architecture, interiors and exhibition designs, Shapira had a special interest in social responsibility. His research and writings frequently addressed the theory that technology has widened the gap between rich and poor societies, and that design could alleviate this problem.
“He was talking about design thinking before anyone really even coined that term,” says Professor Ricardo Gomes, archive director and a former student of Shapira. “He had a very visionary aspact of how design would impact society.”