OCAD University

OCAD launches Art & Design Society with talk

by author Dr. Paul Polak

TORONTO, June 4, 2008—The Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD) is proud to announce the launch of the Art & Design Society, a new patron group supporting and promoting the education of emerging artists and designers.

“The Art & Design Society is a group of leading individuals championing the role of creativity and innovation in a changing world,” said Jessica Kamphorst, President of the OCAD Foundation and Executive Director, Development & Alumni Relations. “The Society will be a cornerstone of support for OCAD and its extraordinary students.”

To celebrate this exciting new initiative, the Art & Design Society is presenting a free public talk by Dr. Paul Polak, founder of International Development Enterprises, a global non-profit organization that has helped 17 million people in developing countries escape poverty. His new book, Out of Poverty: What Works When Traditional Approaches Fail, exposes the flaws in Western efforts to alleviate poverty and offers effective alternatives. Dr. Polak’s talk will preview the highly anticipated Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum touring exhibition, Design for the Other 90%.

“The majority of the world’s designers focus all their efforts on developing products and services exclusively for the richest 10% of the world’s customers,” says Polak. “Nothing less than a revolution in design is needed to reach the other 90%.”

Design for the Other 90% will open at the OCAD Professional Gallery (presented in partnership with the Design Exchange) during Scotiabank Nuit Blanche on October 4, 2008.

“As an inspiration for this acclaimed exhibition, Dr. Polak will provide a uniquely insightful discussion about global poverty,” said Charles Reeve, Curator of the Professional Gallery.

Dr. Paul Polak: Out of Poverty: When Traditional Approaches Fail
Free public talk and book launch
Tuesday, June 17, 2008, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Ontario College of Art & Design
Auditorium, 100 McCaul Street, Toronto
All are welcome; admission is free.
Seating is limited. Guests are advised to arrive early.

“The Art & Design Society will enhance OCAD’s leadership in this imagination-driven economy,” concluded Kamphorst. “We’re thrilled to welcome Dr. Polak at our inaugural event.”

About Paul Polak and International Development Enterprises
A psychiatrist for 23 years, Paul Polak founded Colorado-based non-profit International Development Enterprises (IDE) in 1981 to develop practical solutions that attack poverty at its roots. In 2003, Polak was named in Scientific American magazine’s “Top 50” annual list recognizing outstanding acts of leadership in technology for his policy work in agriculture. In 2004, Polak received Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year” award in the social responsibility category. Under Polak’s guidance, IDE has obtained more than $40 million in funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

About the Art & Design Society
The Art & Design Society of the Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD) is made up of partners who play a critical role in supporting OCAD, one of the world’s leading universities of art and design. Membership benefits include invitations to exclusive events, lectures by leaders in art and design, gallery openings, and behind-the-scenes tours of OCAD studios. To learn more, visit www.ocad.ca/thesociety.

About the Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD)
The Ontario College of Art & Design (www.ocad.ca) is Canada’s “university of the imagination.” OCAD is dedicated to art and design education, practice and research and to knowledge and invention across a wide range of disciplines. The university is building on its traditional, studio-based strengths, adding new approaches to learning that champion cross-disciplinarity, collaboration and the integration of emerging technologies. In the Age of Imagination, OCAD community members will be uniquely qualified to act as catalysts for the next advances in culture, technology and quality of life for all Canadians.

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Media Contacts:

Sarah Mulholland, Media & Communications Officer, OCAD
416-977-6000 Ext. 327 (mobile: Ext.1327)

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