Sustainability News

Posted on Monday, March 30, 2015 by Laura Braun

But Kloehn didn’t set out to make any political or symbolic statement. As long as he can remember, he loved building things. At first, growing up in Denver, it was forts. After getting his undergraduate degree at Evergreen State College, then attending California College of Arts and Crafts (now called California College of the Arts), he had a fantasy of building an “art utopia” in Oakland, filled with artist friends.

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Posted on Tuesday, March 17, 2015 by Laura Braun

And, of course, it isn't just the bike itself that needs to evolve—so do cities. "We do need a better or different bike," says Colin Owen, who teaches bike design at California College of the Arts and founded an urban cycling brand called Sparse.

Posted on Monday, March 16, 2015 by Laura Braun

Bred in the Digital Craft Lab at the California College of the Arts, the current progress demonstrates the principle of deploying multiple eight-legged drones that can drill and deploy their liquid payload, intended to “repair or maintain” the landing site.

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Posted on Monday, March 2, 2015 by Laura Braun

I am excited to share the highlights of our second-annual partnership with California College of the Arts (CCA) in San Francisco.  We worked with the Advanced Materiality class and Amy Campos, the class instructor.  The purpose of the class was to have students understand how materiality and design affect global ecology.  More specifically, how could potential waste be transformed into real world usable applications.  This is where 49 Square Miles came in by donating thousands of sample or waste leather belts to the class (about 6,000).  Since the project was focused on “materiality,” or ho

Posted on Thursday, January 22, 2015 by Laura Braun

From the Serpent & Bow blog

When Rachel Blodgett (Textiles/Printmaking, 2011) first arrived at CCA’s Oakland campus, she knew she had found her place. As someone drawn to history and nature, the century-old college and its foliage-laden campus instantly called to her.

In fact, the lush landscape of the campus served as an impetus for her fascination with dyes, which inspired her to launch Serpent & Bow, a full-fledged online business specializing mainly in sustainable indigo-dyed lingerie.

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“The Oakland campus felt magical and it just felt like home to me. I enjoyed taking the shuttle between campuses. My first year I took Fashion [Design] and had to get up early and it was just really beautiful,” says Blodgett.

Posted on Friday, January 16, 2015 by Jim Norrena

In 2011 students Anna Acquistapace (DMBA 2011), Olivia Nava (DMBA 2012), and Eric Persha (DMBA 2012), launched an idea inspired by the MBA in Design Strategy program's Social Ventures course (taught by faculty member Steve Diller).

The idea involves working with members of a solar-distribution company as a partner organization to offer community members in rural Tanzania connectivity services that use renewable solar energy.

(Initially the partner organization had wanted to address better solar-powered lighting solutions in Tanzania, which evolved into the more wide-serving Juabar business model.)

"Our [CCA] education helped us realize that you don’t approach innovation by answering questions, but rather you look to understand end-users’ needs.

"So we didn’t come to that project on 'how can we better sell solar lights?' but more 'how do we understand the electricity experience of Tanzanians with little or no electricity experience?'"

Posted on Wednesday, January 7, 2015 by Laura Braun

Splitting time between Brooklyn, New York and Managua, Nicaragua, Aaron Poritz designs and creates furniture and accessories that are meant to endure. His architecture studies at the California College of the Arts instilled in him the principles of sustainability, which continues to inform Poritz’s designs today. Many of his designs are made from hurricane-felled lumber and local materials from Nicaragua.

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Posted on Monday, January 5, 2015 by Laura Braun

A CFDA-affiliated school, its students have won many industry awards and landed jobs with marquee-name labels and companies, including Nike, Badgley Mischka and Thom Browne. There is also a notable focus on sustainable design. 

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Posted on Monday, December 15, 2014 by Em Meine

Metamorphosis: the Transformation of Everyday Objects is a current exhibition of Jewelry / Metal Arts alumni at the Museum of Craft and Design. The exhibition is curated by CCA faculty member David Cole and features the work of 10 California College of the Arts alumni.

About Metamorphosis

What is beautiful? How do artists see the world around us?

These artworks were selected to examine the creative process of makers who choose to use common and even humble objects as their medium. Some of these things were found in thrift stores -- or the trash -- and have an entire history of manufacture and use before they were rediscovered for another purpose.

Their relationship to some previous, unknown owner and the journey of that object into and out of the life of that person, is recorded in the patterns of wear on the surfaces.

Other materials have inherent beauty that is easy to overlook because of the context in which we perceive them. The luster and radiance that would distinguish the rarest pearl is viewed quite differently when it is seen in grains of rice or pencil leads.

Posted on Wednesday, November 19, 2014 by Laura Braun

In San Francisco, “speculative” architects are turning their attention to how buildings might be redesigned to accommodate local water sources and a changing climate.

In a bright and airy studio in San Francisco’s Dogpatch neighborhood, Nataly Gattegno, a co-founder of the Future Cities Lab, introduces me to Hydramax.

Hydramax is a model of a theoretical structure (the word “building” doesn’t quite feel adequate; Gattegno calls it a “port machine”) designed for the San Francisco waterfront.

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