About Mario Gagliardi

Mario Gagliardi is Principal of MGD.

Innovation starts with concepts

Organisations often struggle to change. One fundamental hindrance are tacit mental concepts, the foundation for both daily decision-making and the long-term strategy formulation of organisations. Once mental concepts have become taken for granted, they are held implicitly and can be barriers to novel thinking around a common aim.

Continue reading

Posted in Design by Mario Gagliardi

Social consciousness and design

Larger shifts in social consciousness offer chances for new product concepts.

The green movement, the emerging consciousness of our environment, is a long-term influcence which in the nineteen-nineties gave way to concepts such as Body Shop, in the early 2000’s supported the emergence of organic and fairtrade food, and  in the late twenty-tens leads to the popular adoption of Veganism. It also changed corporate communication strategies: Petrochemical company BP, for instance, changed their corporate identity from a shield to a sunflower in order to communicate an image of environmental consciousness. Continue reading

Posted in Design by Mario Gagliardi

From Photoshop to Artificial Intelligence

President Trump recently tweeted about allegedly photoshopped pictures of Melania. It shows that in our social media age, the task of editing images becomes increasingly important. The current market leader in image manipulation is Adobe’s Photoshop, namesake of the now common verb “photoshopping”. Photoshop is part of Adobe Creative Cloud, a subscription service for image software which generated a revenue of over 1 billion US$ in 2017.

The playing field is changing with a new breed of image software powered by Generative Adversarial Networks. Photoshop features intricate workflow processes, making it useful only for trained specialists. AI-powered image manipulation is however capable of much more, with the potential for a much larger market.

Continue reading

In Memoriam Alessandro Mendini

New bridge for the Accademia, Alessandro Mendini, Biennale di Venezia, 1985

In European living spaces, the classical credenza was an important interior object full of meaning. Depending on the household, it was in the the kitchen or in the dining room, containing objects which could reveal the status, memory and history of a family – plates, cutlery, candlesticks.

Continue reading

Posted in Design by Mario Gagliardi

FUTURE CITY at MAK Vienna

For the event FUTURE CITY at MAK Vienna, I invited three creatives to collaborate and show perspectives for the future of cities. I asked: In the not too distant future, how will we get from home to work? How will we dress and express ourselves? How will we nourish ourselves?

Performance at MAK Museum of Applied Arts in Vienna with fashion by Dr Noki, sculptures by Kristiane Kegelmann, and visuals by myself

Continue reading

Posted in Design by Mario Gagliardi

Like friends, follow uses

Digital machines such as smartphones frame behavior and instill new cultural and social practices. ‘Liking’, ‘sharing’, ‘following’ are relational activities which have been defined by social media and established as new normal in the shaping of human relationships. The phenomenon of communication devices prompting new behaviors and expressions is not new: for instance, the word “hello” did not exist until the development of the telephone.

Continue reading

Three approaches to the design process

The design process as it is usually taught and applied at the beginning of the 21st century is concerned with goals, aims and targets. It is dealing with business and industry, target groups and financial targets. It is looking at the often “wicked” problems found in all areas of life. It is, in general, working with – or trying to work with – the world, its structures and problems, including its systems, its territories, its politics and power struggles. But is this the only way the design process can be approached?
Continue reading