Dublin architect joins Taipei design capital committee
Ali Grehan: “Being invited to help curate the Taipei World Design Capital 2016 year is a terrific honour and a huge endorsement of the Pivot Dublin Project.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill
Ms Grehan was in Taipei in 2011 when Dublin narrowly missed out on being chosen as World Design Capital, but has remained active in keeping the capital’s profile high within the global design community.
“Being invited to help curate the Taipei World Design Capital 2016 year is a terrific honour and a huge endorsement of the Pivot Dublin Project,” she said.
“The main job of the international advisers is to make international connections and obviously the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID) and Taipei think Dublin is well placed to do that . . . which we are,” she said.
Adaptive city Taipei’s theme for 2016 is “adaptive city – design in motion”, and it aims to examine questions such as encouraging innovation with limited resources, responding flexibly to challenges and mobilising citizens’ collective power.
As well as Ms Grehan, the committee comprises Shikuan Chen; Arthur Huang; Manfred Wang and Wei-Gong Liou from Taipei; Bulelwa Makalima-Ngewana from Cape Town; and ICSID secretary general Dilki de Silva, from Montreal.
The committee members will also play an ambassadorial role internationally by activating their networks and promoting opportunities for engagement.
“Taiwan is a friendly, comfortable place and this is an interesting opportunity for Irish design businesses to gain a foothold in the Asian market,” said Ms Grehan.
And there are opportunities for Irish designers there.
“A key focus for Taipei is to develop their design industry, and Irish designers should think about connecting or partnering with local industry. I’d be happy to facilitate this,” she said.
There is a lot for Irish designers to learn, as well as teach. Extraordinarily inventive design responses are required in building massive Asian cities, and while these might not always be appropriate to smaller cities, the principles are relevant, such as concentrating development around public transport.