Over 4000 free audio and video lectures, seminars and teaching resources from Oxford University.
Skip to Content Skip to Navigation

Design for War and Peace: 2014 Annual Design History Society Conference

2014 was a year of commemoration for the wars and unrest of the twentieth century: the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War; the anniversaries of 1944, final year of the Second World War and the opening battles of the Vietnam War in 1954; the end of apartheid in South Africa in 1994. Claire O’Mahony, Course Director of the MSt in the History of Design, convened the 2014 annual Design History Society conference at Oxford's Department for Continuing Education reflecting upon the relationship of design and craft both to conflict and to hopes for peace and justice in our collective memory and our future.

Between Thursday 4 and Saturday 6 September 2014, 120 scholars travelled from 19 countries around the globe to meet at Rewley House to share and to discuss their new research about Design for War and Peace. Professors and doctoral candidates; practitioners, museum and heritage professionals and independent scholars presented 65 academic papers, framed by 3 invited keynote lectures generously funded by the Design History Society and the University of Oxford’s John Fell Fund.

The keynote lectures were filmed and most of the speakers generously gave permission to podcast their 20-minute papers. These recordings form this digital conference proceeding which was made possible through the generosity of the University of Oxford’s John Fell Fund supporting the administrative work of a 2013-5 MSt in the History of Design student, Vega Bantock, and the technical support the Department for Continuing Education IT team.

# Episode Title Description People Date
40 Creative Commons Decorated Handkerchiefs: cotton, colours and conflict ‘in and about’ Northern Ireland This paper examines a cotton handkerchief decorated by women republican prisoners Armagh Jail in 1976. It considers the power of cloth, its appropriation and circulation through in prisons of the conflict ‘in and about’ Northern Ireland. Louise Purbrick 05 Dec 2014
39 A Jewish Teenager in Hiding: Representations of Anne Frank in The Diary of Anne Frank Anne Frank’s The Diary of a Young Girl (1952) chronicles the two years that Anne, her family, and four other Jews spent in hiding during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands during World War II. Sarach Lichtman 21 Oct 2014
38 Design for the Reconstruction: housing Exhibitions and the QT8 Model District at the ninth Triennale in Milan (1947) The reconstruction in Italy is perceived as a call by architects who, after the fall of Fascism and the Civil War. The first postwar Triennale in 1947 is the test for the new design, architecture and urban planning in Italy. Elena Dellapiana 21 Oct 2014
37 Clothing Soldiers: Development of an organised system of production and supply of military clothing in England between 1645 and 1708 This paper will set up and identify certain needs that a soldier's clothing of this period had to satisfy Katherine Elliott 21 Oct 2014
36 How Disabled Design Changed the History of Modernism. This lecture explores disabled design as an alternative to canonical aesthetic and political histories of David Serlin 16 Oct 2014
35 Trapped in Shells: Mindset and Materiality in First World War Trench Art and Beyond First World War Trench Art. Nicholas Saunders 16 Oct 2014
34 Designed to Kill: The Social Life of Weapons in Twentieth Century Britain Weapon design and modern warfare. Joanna Bourke 16 Oct 2014
33 Creative Commons Arthur Wragg: Pacifist Polemics in Black and White Arthur Wragg Damon Taylor 09 Oct 2014
32 Creative Commons “Not for Glory, not for Gain!” The Czech Glass Spartakiad Figurine, 1955 This paper looks at the glass figurines of Czech artist Miloslav Klinger, made to commemorate the 1955 Prague Spartakiad, as complex sites of memory, craft and political propaganda. Rebecca Bell 07 Oct 2014
31 Creative Commons “Design, Domesticity and Revolution: Transitioning the Cuban Ideal Home” Through an examination of domestic advice and advertisements found in Cuban popular magazines, this paper explores the relationship between politics and popular media during the period 1950 to 1970. Sara Desvernine-Reed 30 Sep 2014
30 Creative Commons The Politics of Memory: Designing the Ganatantra Smarak (Republic Memorial), Kathmandu, Nepal Examination of the design competition of Nepal's republic memorial. Bryony Whitmarsh 30 Sep 2014
29 Creative Commons War on Wheels First World War vehicles as instruments of order and chaos. Gregory Votolato 30 Sep 2014
28 Creative Commons ‘Help to win the war’: an analysis of the typographic posters produced by the New Zealand Government 1914-1918 This paper analyses typographic posters produced by the New Zealand Government in WWI to recruit men and money to the war effort. They chart the progress of recruitment strategies from voluntarism through to the contested years leading to conscription. Patricia Thomas 30 Sep 2014
27 Creative Commons ‘Public memory and everyday memorials: work of the Imperial War Graves Commission’ The paper highlights tensions that appeared in the near routine collection of trophies for memorials and the design of war cemeteries between British imperial offices and those of former colonies, particularly Australia’s War Records Section. William Taylor 30 Sep 2014
26 Creative Commons Images of Women in a Changing Colonial Taiwanese Society during the Period of World War I Propaganda: graphic design and print culture Chu-Yu Sun 30 Sep 2014
25 Creative Commons Funky Bunkers: The Post-Military Landscape as a Readymade Space and a Cultural Playgound On adapted reuse of military establishments. Per Strömberg 30 Sep 2014
24 Cultural Trauma: Kós, Kozma, and Hungarian Design in the First World War By comparing the work and career trajectories of these two architect-designers, this paper explored the changes in taste, style and cultural meaning of the dominant trends in Hungarian interior design before and after World War 1. Paul Stirton 30 Sep 2014
23 Furniture in Portugal, 1940-1974: between tradition, authoritarianism and modernity Portuguese design furniture (1940-1974) and the industrial policies of the New State's dictatorship. Helena Maria Souto, Eduardo Cortês Real 30 Sep 2014
22 Creative Commons Authenticity and commemoration: an analysis of Otto Weidt Worshop for the Blind and the Jewish Museum in Berlin This paper will analyse both spaces according to their scale, location in the city, authenticity, phenomenology and prosthetic memory, in order to determine whether design can enhance and protect our collective memory. Ana Souto 30 Sep 2014
21 Creative Commons Collective Memory and Conflict Representation: War and Peace in Colombian Museums This paper studies some Colombian museums that are reflecting upon war. Andrés Pardo Rodriguez 30 Sep 2014
20 Creative Commons 'Ambassador of Good Will': Three Centuries of American Art in 1930s Europe The 1938 exhibition, Three Centuries of American Art, on display in Europe and the United States. Caroline Riley 30 Sep 2014
19 Creative Commons South African poster propaganda during the Second World War The paper examines poster propaganda produced in South Africa during the Second World War. Deirdre Pretorius 30 Sep 2014
18 The AIDS Memorial Quilt: Mourning an Ongoing War Contemporary Design History; History of the AIDS Crisis Clementine Power 30 Sep 2014
17 Creative Commons Syonan Shimbun: Singapore's Wartime Newspaper The presentation looks at the design and production of this propaganda paper as part of the wider history of the Singaporean Straits Times, the newspaper it briefly replaced. Jessie O'Neill 30 Sep 2014
16 Creative Commons Designed to Kill : The Difficult Study of Military Design Design is perceived by most as a positive concept meant to improve people lives. But it is first a means to answer efficiently a specific purpose. How can we morally accept that the act of killing led to the development of an important design industry? Marie-Anne Michaux 30 Sep 2014
15 Creative Commons Camouflage for peace: disruptive pattern material and dazzle painting in contemporary design and art The aim of this paper is to analyse the consequences of this change, in other words, the examination of the ways, the strategies, the semiotics and the social uses of the objects which conform the so-called camouflage for peace. Maite Méndez-Baiges 30 Sep 2014
14 Creative Commons Draw me an AK-47: Transnational imaginaries in the trenches of the cold war This paper examines the image of the Kalashnikov in the cold war period through two intersecting lenses that cut across disciplines of design –– the object in its public mediation and the image in its transnational circulation through print culture. Zeina Maasri 30 Sep 2014
13 Creative Commons "Good Housing depends on You”: Wartime Housing, 1942 MoMA’s 1942 Wartime Housing exhibition demonstrated that housing contributed to the war effort. Through innovative display, the museum proposed that new materials, modern techniques, and community planning would create lively permanent communities. Erin McKellar 30 Sep 2014
12 Creative Commons Quiet, Humane and ‘Anonymous’: Pevsner’s art-historical response to wartime This paper focuses on Pevsner’s wartime writings. Ariyuki Kondo 30 Sep 2014
11 Furniture Behind the Wire An examination of the material culture and social history of the German internees held on the Isle of Man, who made furniture designed by CR Mackintosh for the Northampton home of the Bassett-Lowke family between 1916 and 1919. Jake Kaner, Yvonne Cresswell 30 Sep 2014
10 Creative Commons The secret dollhouse: craft and resistance in Stalinist Estonia My presentation will focus on the subject of nonprofessional craft as a tool of resistance against the official power. I will be concentrating on one particular case study from Soviet Estonia, dating from the 1940s. Triin Jerlei 30 Sep 2014
9 Creative Commons Material objects and visual web presentation: the Virtual Peace Palace Museum Material objects and visual web presentation: the Virtual Peace Palace Museum. Marjan Groot 30 Sep 2014
8 Creative Commons Conflicting Views: Print Propaganda Depicting Tourism in a Landscape of War An analysis of Ruth Taylor White’s “cartograph” for the 1945 guidebook A G.I. View of American Red Cross China, India and Burma, published by the American Red Cross. Dori Griffin 30 Sep 2014
7 Creative Commons Prints of Peace: Elihu Burritt and the graphics of reform This talk examines the propaganda campaign conducted by mid-nineteenth century American reformer Elihu Burritt and a group of engravers and artists who used the graphic potential of postal items, such as envelopes, to pressure politicians for peace. Peter Gilderdale 30 Sep 2014
6 Creative Commons Book and musket | graphic design of Italian school reports and diplomas during the Fascism In the interwar period, the Italian school reports and diplomas turned into a direct expression of the most advanced artistic research. Fascism revolutionized institutional graphic design to achieve a modern effective communication. Caterina Franchini 30 Sep 2014
5 Creative Commons Modernising the V&A: From War to Reconstruction 1918-51 In the aftermath of two world wars, the V&A struggled to reconstruct a national view of contemporary art and design in which Britain’s industrial past and contemporary developments could be reconciled. Laura Elliot 30 Sep 2014
4 Creative Commons Dressed to Dissent: 'Catch-22' Clothing This paper examines dress as a form of anti-war Vietnam protest using the cross dressing character of Corporal Maxwell Klinger on the long-running American sitcom MASH as its focus. Marilyn Cohen 30 Sep 2014
3 Creative Commons Design during the War: the seventh Triennale in Milan and the Mostra della produzione in serie (Serial production exhibition, 1940) The Serial production exhibition, by Giuseppe Pagano, opens a new attitude in Italian design. The most advanced industrial products are shown to the public: typewriters, calculators, metal furnitures, microscopes, optical instruments, raincoats and so on. Alberto Bassi 28 Sep 2014
2 Creative Commons ENIAC versus Colossus and the early presentation of electronic computers A description of the concurrent yet different development of electronic computers during WWII in the UK and US– most notably the secrecy of the UK development compared to the widely known work in the US and the consequent effects on the computing industry Paul Atkinson 28 Sep 2014
1 Creative Commons ‘Propaganda in Three Dimensions’: British Ministry of Information Exhibitions During World War Two Exhibitions designed by the British Ministry of Information exhibitions branch during World War Two as official propaganda: their methods and impact. Harriet Atkinson 28 Sep 2014