Design Trust Futures Studio (DTFS) is a long-term fagship programme that makes visible the processes and positive role of design in the culture of contemporary design and production. The programme stems from a project-studio concept that promotes life-long collaborations through a mentor-mentee programme. DTFS is a cross-disciplinary initiative created and conceptualised by Marisa Yiu, Co-founder and Executive Director of Design Trust. Experts from different elds will contribute to the mentor-mentee teams in the exploration of materials, production, and put forth the positive value of design of assets in Hong Kong, the Greater Bay Area and internationally.
"In 2019, Design Trust Futures Studio theme and concept is focused on 'HERITAGE IS INNOVATION', exploring the difficult yet animated definitions of Hong Kong identity, shaping conversations on "Conservation", and finding new ways to open up heritage sites to build new narratives of the role and place of heritage – not as a static subject but a dynamic living and inspiring process. The programme deals with how design disciplines could relate and contribute to making heritage artefacts and buildings in Hong Kong more accessible to the public, while positioning for sustainable tourism in heritage sites in the city and the region. Constituting a major part of our cultural background and collective memory, heritage conservation can be achieved by a dynamic process and design disciplines can play a significant role in the shaping of intangible and dynamic processes." – Marisa Yiu (Co-founder/ Executive Director of DESIGN TRUST)
Design Trust Futures Studio 2019 curates site-specific objects by Hong Kong-based designers, who have been involved in the Design Trust foundation as grant recipients and designer mentees in the last years. The programme tests and experiments with building a series of design dialogues in the old 1936 Haw Par Mansion, the Tai Hang neighborhood, and its extension to other cultures and communities beyond Hong Kong.
Haw Par Mansion has recently been unveiled to the public to become home for a new music foundation, and the neighborhood of Tai Hang is undergoing transformation, both presenting a fascinating intersection of old and new, ancient and modern, colonial and post-colonial histories. Tai Hang neighborhood enables a space for extending the role Haw Par as a public space and space for community. Programme partners such as Tai Ping with its rich history, and specific archives of Hong Kong Heritage; Haw Par and its highlighted collections; and such research on Hong Kong through the lens of various advisory members, will be continuously shared throughout the programme.