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COOL LAB

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Sarah Chayeb

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Finalista seleccionado por el jurado en PerúDesignNet
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Cool Lab is an innovative project aiming to experiment with collaboration between artisans, designers, schools, companies and professional organizations and institutions.

These collaborations are an opportunity for young designers and entrepreneurs from all over the world to discover Peruvian crafts, as well as for the artisans to develop their expertise and share their considerable knowledge. Artisans and designers will work together, sharing skills, techniques and processes, to create a collection of cross-cultural products.

The main tool of Cool Lab will be its website where video profiles of different Peruvian artisans will be uploaded, allowing designers from everywhere to connect with them and discover the diversity of their traditional crafts. These video profiles will explore and cultivate the character and potential of each artisan by drawing on their personal stories and skills - the aim is to preserve the different identities of each craftsperson rather than homogenize. Seeing what these artisans do and the way they work and live showcased in these videos will inspire young designers to consider their work from new perspectives.

The personal stories of the Peruvian artisans and the particular history of the area will form the basis for events and workshops that will be developed alongside local universities and institutions. This step will help us understand the mechanics of the market and the relation between craft and design while also encouraging debate about the industry’s future.

Using the Cool Lab website, young designers will be able to communicate their ideas and sketches to the artisans, making their collaboration easy and direct. Working with universities and institutions will also help by offering a space for foreign designers and local artisans to work on their joint projects.

By providing an online platform for such a significant intercultural and inter- institutional exchange, Cool Lab will develop an identity and community of its own with a diverse spectrum of participating members.

After making its start in Peru, Cool Lab will aim to increase the input of artisans from different countries and cultures who will all provide their stories and personal experiences and in turn create a design collaboration movement that would become something of an anthropological adventure.

1 - 2 - 3 - The first step of the project is meeting the Peruvian artisans. This will be an occasion to discover the diversity of their crafts. Each one of the artisans has their own skills and personal stories, they will be the subject of video reports. The series of Portraits of Peruvian artisans will be uploaded on Coolab.com, the main tool of the project. The website of the project will allow students, designers, schools, companies and professional organizations and institutions to discover Peruvian crafts and traditional techniques. With the videos, they will learn about each artisan and their environment. Designers will start getting ideas taking in consideration the skills and traditional techniques they discovered in the videos. Once ready to present their sketches, they will contact an artisan using the Cool Lab platform.

4 - 5 - These collaborations will encourage the creativity of both artisans and designers. Their project will be the opportunity for them to exchange and improve skills and techniques. Collaborating with schools and institutions will allow young designers to work hand in hand with artisans in Peru in order to produce a collection of products. This collection will reflect the stories behind each product - the collaboration between a talented artisan and a passionate designer. The aim of Cool Lab is to rescue regional techniques and knowledge by encouraging exchange and education for the next generations. It will allow artisans to understand the mechanics of the market and also their environmental and social issues. Cool Lab will develop an identity and community of its own with a diverse spectrum of participating members - Its an intercultural, intergenerational and interdisciplinary project ! After making its start in Peru, Cool Lab will aim to increase the input of artisans from different countries and cultures who will all provide their stories and personal experiences and in turn create a design collaboration movement that would become something of an anthropological adventure!

The main tool of the project will be its website - Coolab.com. Here are some screen shots of how this platform would work.

On this page, students, designers and companies will have a first look at Peruvian artisans diversity of skills. Portraits of Peruvian artisans is a series of videos presenting each artisan and his personal specialty. By clicking on a portrait, the visitor will learn more about each artisan.

On this page, visitors (designers, students..) can watch the video report concerning an artisan in particular. After discovering his skills and traditional techniques, the young designer will be able to contact the artisan for a future collaboration.

Cool Lab presents Portraits of designers, a mini series of videos. On these videos we follow some young designers in their creative process - the story behind a product. Marion Faydit is studying textiles at Encsi, in Paris. She presents us her work of textile structures meant for refugee camps. By observing how is organized life in these precarious housing, her project considers environmental issues with an ecological approach. Manon Piat is a young designer graduated from École Camondo in Paris. She works as a freelancer, and develops new techniques she learned after her travel in Southeast Asia. Charlotte Le Gouvello, also graduates from École Camondo, and currently working at Philippe Starck Agency , is presenting us one of her personal projects she loves most, La Mar Azucar, inspired by African Culture. Portraits of designers is showing how crafts from all over the world are inspiring designers. Its also an introduction to Portraits of Peruvian artisans, the next step of the Cool Lab project.

"Portraits of designers" is available on Vimeo : https://vimeo.com/sarahchayeb/portraitsofdesigners1 https://vimeo.com/sarahchayeb/portraitsofdesigners2 https://vimeo.com/sarahchayeb/portraitsofdesigners3