Workshop: Think Local, Act Global—Modularity Across Cultures

Nov. 4 to 6, 2015, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Modularity across cultures: collaborative workshop

Modularity is a term with many meanings in many contexts ranging from architecture to design to engineering and software development. Regardless of which type of modularity we refer to, one of the most essential - if not the most essential part of a module - is its interface, or the link / juncture between two or more modules. Using countries and cultures as a metaphor for modules in a global society, one can observe that between countries and cultures this interface can be of a physical nature; borders and landscapes, or of a metaphysical nature; between language and rituals (culture).


This investigation into the topic of MODULARITY has been conducted between three design faculties from three countries and continents – Germany/Europe, Japan/Asia, and USA/North America: The Rosenheim University of Applied Sciences (Prof. Linn Song, Prof. Rainer Haegele, Doz. Wolfgang Jäger), Chiba University (Prof. Kaname Yanagisawa), and The University of Texas at Austin (Prof. Tamie Glass).


During this collaborative workshop in Austin, students were asked to address the topic of communication and language between Americans and Germans through a drawing exercise integrating “modules of constriction.” In a subsequent design charrette, students examined the relationship and possible interfaces between viewer and art, as well as viewer and viewer(s) in the form of developing a modular x‐cape for a gallery at the Blanton Museum of Art.


The Rosenheim University of Applied Sciences – Innenarchitektur

Instructor: Linn Song, Professor of Visual Communication, Director of the MIXstudio Laboratory

Participants: Sabrina Bauer, Anna Bosnjak, Katja-Sophie Elfroth, Laura Hoffmann


The University of Texas School of Architecture – Interior Design

Instructor: Tamie Glass, Associate Professor

Participants: Natalie Boverman, Janet Chen, Kim Gabosch, Kate Krikorian, Taylor Moore, Kaylen Parker, Ceci Sariol, Madison Schell, Samantha Shiminski, Shawna Stockon


The Blanton Museum of Art

Hannah W. Wong, PhD candidate, 20th C. Visual Culture & Art History, UT

Francesca Consagra, PhD, Senior Curator of Prints and Drawings, and European Paintings