BE OPEN Inside the Academy

May 31, 2013, 13:21 ET from BE OPEN

LONDON, May 31, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

BE OPEN launches the Sounding Space Symposium with University of the Arts, London (UAL) and announces the Inside the Academy program for 2013-2014.

BE OPEN, the social and cultural initiative committed to creativity and innovation, is continuing its research into the senses via a collaboration with UAL on the Sounding Space Symposium in London from 6-7 June.

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The Foundation sets a theme each year which is developed through different events and projects and is disseminated via the BE OPEN website and social media channels. The current theme is design for the five senses, involving innovative projects that reach out to the sixth sense, or intuition. Research into the five senses began at the September 2012 London Design Festival, with a series of events conceived around the BE OPEN Sound Portal.

Sounding Space marks the conclusion of the BE OPEN Sound Portal's residency at Chelsea College of Art and Design. This state-of-the-art experimental sound space, devised by BE OPEN, Arup and the London Design Festival, was transported to Chelsea College of Art and Design after its residency in Trafalgar Square  as one of the London Design Festival 2012 landmark events. Students from three UAL colleges have had an opportunity to explore this unique ambisonic sound space in three quite different ways.

Sounding Space will showcase each of the college projects, with a focus on urbanism and sound. Keynote speeches will be made by celebrated sound artist Bill Fontana and by Dr John Drever, Head of the Unit for Sound Practice Research, at Goldsmiths, University of London.

BE OPEN Founder Elena Baturina says, "We wanted to work with UAL's world-renowned colleges to underline our commitment to supporting both practical study and innovative thinking. Our aim is to help brilliant young creatives to shape the future and to do that, they have to be exposed to inspiring ideas today, ideas they can evolve to improve on our tomorrow."

Researching sound and its effect on our cities is a theme that will underpin discussion throughout the symposium. A crucial function of the Sound Portal has been to look at the problem of noise in our cities and to find ways of mitigating its impact.


During Sounding Space, BE OPEN will also reveal a series of initiatives for its Inside the Academy program. The new, extended programme offers three ways of supporting young creatives, schools and universities through an awards scheme, a master class program and a ranking system.

Open calls for entries will be via BE OPEN's website and social networks and a close working relationship with schools and universities will help the Foundation identify designers and design solutions for tomorrow's world.

Elena Baturina says, "Schools are an essential part of what we become as people and as citizens. Choosing the right way to develop your creative talent is crucial and too often young people are left with no support to develop their capabilities. BE OPEN's aim is to become a partner for students and institutions to give much needed support and to accompany talented young individuals on their journey towards a bright future."

Roberto Zancan, will curate the Inside the Academy program in collaboration with BE OPEN. He is an academic as well as a journalist and the deputy editor of Domus.

The BE OPEN Inside the Academy program will be announced to press at Chelsea College of Art & Design on 6 June where the three key elements will be introduced:

BE OPEN Inside the Academy: Design Institute Ranking System

A unique design education ranking system to compare offerings at the key design schools and universities worldwide. The report will become an essential tool for design students.  BE OPEN'S ranking aims to scout out new institutions, looking for the best of the new universities and courses that are currently often overlooked.

BE OPEN Inside the Academy: Master's Program

This will be an innovative trans-disciplinary master's program for the world's top-ranking design institutes. The idea is to create a bridge between design academies and scientific programs, research laboratories, high-tech and innovative companies. The program will be financed so that institutions can offer students the right environment to further develop their abilities and vision.

BE OPEN Inside the Academy: Young Talent Award

This new prize for the design world will be dedicated to young, emerging designers who have just begun to express their ideas and visions for the future. A world-class jury will select an annual winner who will receive from a 24,000 Euro allowance for the year, crucial funding so that they can continue to develop their work and explore their potential.

The press briefing will also host a panel discussion on creativity today, led by Zancan with Shay Alkalay of Raw Edges, Jay Osgerby of Barber&Osgerby and Sofia Lagerkvist of Front Design.  

The BE OPEN Sound Portal program and Sound Symposium at UAL bring the Foundation's sensory year to a close and a new theme will be launched for 2013. This will be the interaction between the North, South, East and West in terms of culture and the different, creative approaches to dealing with critical urban issues of our time.

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Press contact:
Theresa Simon & Partners, London
Theresa Simon,