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We Can Create shakin’ it up

We Can Create shakin’ it up

The world of creativity is all about shaking things up and upcoming art, design and creative technologies event We Can Create is no exception. There’s a bunch of exciting news tinged with a bit of sad, so let’s get the bad out of the way first. Due to production delays on his new MTV sitcom, Taika Waititi has had to pull out of this year’s event. And medical reasons mean interactive architecture guru Usman Haque has also pulled the plug on his appearance. But not to worry because some exciting new additions to the line-up of speakers have also been announced. 

First up is local Chris Graham, director of Sione’s Wedding and nautical horror The Ferryman, starring John Rhys Davis and Kerry Fox. Graham has also notched up a Cartoon Network kid’s show, a slew of award-winning music videos and boasts and an impressive portfolio of television commercials. Right now he’s busy screenwriting his next feature. 

New York-based director and designer Karin Fong, of Imaginary Forces, also joins the fray. Fong combines live-action, design and animation for projects in film, television, and immersive environments. And she has quite the impressive portfolio. For starters, she has designed title sequences for numerous feature films, including Ray, Charlotte’s Web, The Pink Panther 2, Terminator :Salvation, and Going the Distance. Her most recent film project is the upcoming documentary Magic Trip, for which she’s created a visual language for Ken Kesey’s acid fueled adventure across America. 

As a commercial director, Fong has helmed spots for Target, Chevrolet, Herman Miller, Sears, and Honda. Other projects include combining cinema with architecture for diverse environments, including Las Vegas. 

Also joining the We Can Create fold is visual artist Rafaël Rozendaal. Using the Internet as his canvas, Rozendaal’s artistic practice consists of websites, installations, drawings, and writing. Spread out over a vast network of domain names, he attracts a large online audience, over 12 million unique visits per year. 

The remaining speaker line-up is as follows: 

Sara Blake from ZSO (New York City): A NYC-based illustrator, designer and art director who combines traditional hand-drawn work with digital printing.

Eike Koening from Hort (Berlin): Koening is the creator of Hort, a small graphic design studio made up of a mixed bag of uniquely selected, creative and spirited people. Hort has been a constant pioneer in re-inventing the visual language of contemporary graphic design.

Engin Celikbas from KesselsKramer (Amsterdam): Celikbas joined Amsterdam start-up agency Kesselskramer as managing director and partner in 1998, after several years working in the Amsterdam, London and Brussels offices of DDB.

Tomas Roope from The Rumpus Room (London): One of the founding partners of The Rumpus Room, has been a leading digital practitioner since 1994. 

Morag Myerscough (London):The integration of design and its environment is central to Morag Myerscough's approach, not controlled by labels and limitations. 

Eric Rodenbeck from Stamen Design (San Francisco): Stamen was founded by Rodenbeck in San Francisco in 2001 and has established a reputation for creating compelling data visualisation. 

Kris Sowersby from Klim Type Foundry (New Zealand): Sowersby graduated from the Wanganui School of Design in 2003. After brief employment as a graphic designer he started the Klim Type Foundry in 2005, currently based in Wellington. 

Frank Kozik (San Francisco): Credited with single handedly reviving the “lost” art of the concert poster, Kozik's creative career rose largely out of his enthusiasm for the growing underground punk rock scene in mid-eighties Austin, Texas. Starting with black and white flyers for friends’ bands, his reputation grew as an artist whose work was graphically compelling as well as culturally gripping.