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Ronald Jones

Ronald Jones

The Experience Design Group (edg) at the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies arises from a need to reconsider the relevance of art, craft and design in response to the fundamental shift in western culture from an object-based to an information-based culture wherein information networks distribute knowledge and influence on a global scale. Industry’s deepening appreciation of consumer preference for experience over more traditional commodities, coupled with the ‘dematerialization of the art object,’ in Lucy Lippard’s words, are early indicators of this profound historical shift – namely, the privileging of experience over object-making. These are reason enough to question the continuing relevance of art, craft and design to the emerging experience economy – or, more productively, to investigate what new relevance experience-based culture can bring to these established disciplines.

In music, architecture and dance – the time-based arts – cultural experience unfolds over time and has a long and well-established history and literature. But at edg we additionally investigate new relevance for hybrid studio practices; that’s why edg is comprised of students, researchers and faculty who work across disciplines, typically in advanced hybrid constellations of research and practice.  We are devoted to interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary practice-led research – from art and design to the experience economy; from history to science; philosophy to technology. Our work, while often speculative, remains practically engaged socially, culturally and ethically. We educate artists, designers and craft-persons who can perceive relevance – often furthest from their own discipline – and convert it into new forms of knowledge. To design time as immersive experience is to persuade, simulate, inform, envision, entertain, and forecast events. It is to influence meaning and modify human behavior. This is why edg graduates are the creators and producers of tomorrow’s – as yet unanticipated – experiences.

Ronald Jones, Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies