Prof Michael Trudgeon

RMIT University, Melbourne

Dr Michael Trudgeon is a professor of design in the School of Design at RMIT University. He is the Deputy Director of the Victorian Eco-Innovation Lab [VEIL], founded at the Faculty of Architecture Building and Planning at the University of Melbourne. He is responsible for delivering the Master of Design Innovation and Technology final design studio program and the international VEIL Eco-acupuncture design studio teaching program into the Masters of Architecture program at UoM. He has taught masters and undergraduate students in architecture, interior design, industrial design and graphic design since1983 at RMIT, the University of Melbourne, Swinburne and Monash University. In practice, he is the founding design director at Crowd Productions, a Melbourne based architecture and industrial design studio started in 1983. His practice background is focused on developing strategies to prototype new technology and spatial solutions for commercial architecture projects. .

From EIDOS to MAGH. Living in a material world.


“Together let us desire, conceive, and create the new structure of the future, which will embrace architecture and sculpture and painting in one unity and which will one day rise toward heaven from the hands of a million workers like the crystal symbol of a new faith.” (Gropius,1919). “The Bauhaus had attempted to crystallize the still unformulated desires of a new man – the post-war German – who had not yet realized what he needed. This man had to construct a new way of life from the debris of a wrecked world – a way of life utterly different from that of pre-war times” (Bayer, 1975). Encapsulated within these ideas drawn from the Bauhaus one can identify two critical streams of thought; firstly, a change in living and the production of the setting for living is required and secondly that that change will be primarily developed through experimentation and practice. Through a panoply of media and disciplinary knowledge, the Bauhaus assembled an approach to rationally build a new platform to live or dwell in the world. Fundamental to this approach is the belief it is possible to design new ways to live that are better or more suited to the needs of people and their bigger social, biological and material contexts. And a belief that researched and tested, orchestrated and designed change could bring about a better world. These simplistic and naïve propositions are the premises I wish to engage with for this presentation. Through a series of lenses and reflections, I want to ask where do these two streams of thinking lead us today: what are our current circumstances regarding design and designed objects? How do we understand the role of making, consumption, human behaviour and economics is changing the way we regard the contribution of our future dwelling spaces? What might it hold for us and what it should it hold for us?