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A dynamic educational platform for discovering, deepening and furthering the Slow design movement.
slowLab Europe
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1 Team Member

Slow greetings :)

Hello everyone and welcome to the wonderful world of slowLab, a nonprofit laboratory for Slow design research, learning and activism.  

For nearly 10 years, slowLab has been the central catalyst of the Slow design movement.  We lead design research, host public dialogues and exhibitions, develop academic projects, and support an international network of Slow design activists whose ways of thinking and working contribute to a richer, Slower, more sustainable world.

slowLab is here on IndieGogo to take Slow design knowledge to the next level in a way that's open, inclusive and available to all.

We’re developing a comprehensive Slow Design Knowledge Platform to enable broader acceptance of Slow design, to amplify the voices of the Slow design community, and to catalyze new Slow design ideas, artifacts, learning programs, local actions and dialogues: in schools, neighborhoods, organizations, and enterprises.

As you consider supporting this campaign, please keep in mind that Slow design is not only for designers.  Every individual can be inspired by and appropriate Slow creative thinking and tools in their lives, in their localities, in how they view and choose to engage the world!


• • • • • • •

About the project


The Slow Design Knowledge Platform has two central components:


This is a central online hub that collects, connects and helps people share a spectrum of Slow design knowledge.  It will operate like a giant honeycomb of Slow design ideas, projects, tools, and resources, organized and dynamically linked to help deepen people's understandings and practical uses of Slow design.  And, importantly, it will be a resource that’s accessible to people around the world, inspiring local Slow activism while transforming how people think about and practice design into the future.


This is a multi-disciplinary program to enable organized research within academic institutions and professional organizations, as well as to support independent research by emerging designers.  It will offer a set of teaching and learning modules for delving into (and further iterating) a set of core Slow design topics, tools and resources.  This research program is intended to enable diverse models of mentorship and collaboration for incubating emerging ideas, expanding research topics, and developing new teaching tools.  And it’s organized so that the fruits of the program feed directly into the Slow Design Knowledge Index, thereby becoming widely visible and available.


Still wondering what Slow design is?

Please scroll down to learn more about Slow design and why this project is so important.  We've included a specific example of how the Slow Design Knowledge Index might work, and to see images of the lovely Slow rewards offered to our IndieGogo supporters!

To learn more about the images and people featured in our video, please check out the posts and Slow design knowledge highlights on our Facebook page: SlowLab - A Slow Design Network.  Note: You don’t need a Facebook account to view the page.


• • • • • • •

What we need / What you get :)


Here on IndieGogo, we’re looking to raise $15,000.  

This money will help fund the preliminary design phase of the Slow Design Knowledge Index, and will get the Slow Design Research Program rolling.

Carolyn Strauss and Ana Paula Pais (shown in the video) will lead a small team in developing the base architecture of the Slow Design Knowledge Index. This includes final research and definition of the core set of Slow design topics, tools and resources, and beginning to define the parameters of the content management system within which all the research information will be organized, stored, and later will feed the online index.  

We’ll also use the money raised here to develop the first modules of the Slow Design Research Program, and to fund outreach to international design schools, organizations, and professional networks.  This work will take place from June to September 2013.


Here’s a rough breakdown of the costs:

> Core development of Slow Design Knowledge Index: design meetings & workshops = $6,500.00

> Preliminary development of Slow Design Research Program research modules = $2,500.00

> Slow Design Research Program outreach to schools and professional organizations = $2,000.00

> Administrative costs, travel and misc = $1500.00

> IndieGogo reward fulfilment (materials, shipping) = $1,450.00

> IndieGogo fees = $1,050.00



Reaching our goal

If we DON’T reach our financial goal here on IndieGogo, we’ll have to revise our plans according to the amount we raise.  We promise to keep all the people who supported us here informed of those changes and of the next steps.

If we EXCEED our goal, we’ll use the funds for further development of the Slow Design Research Program, as well as to start working on the full information architecture of the Slow Design Knowledge Index.  We'll also keep you informed about that!


• • • • • • •

About the Slow ‘perks’ you’ll receive for supporting this :)

All of the ‘perks’ offered to our IndieGogo supporters are created by artists and designers from slowLab’s network.  We are thankful for their participation in this campaign and we are proud of their diverse contributions to a Slow-er world!  Many of these are limited editions, and some of them are created especially for this campaign, meaning that you can be the first to own them :)

Please scroll all the way down to see the images.  Enjoy!


Even Slower Rewards

We’re honored to provide material perks to the generous supporters of this campaign.  It’s a way for us to share Slow design with you, and (we hope) for you to share it on with those around you.

Having said that, we ask you to consider that preparing and sending out all the items involves material (packaging), energy (shipping) and time (ours, that we otherwise could be using to make the project!). 

So, if you feel inspired to support this campaign, but don't care as much about the material reward, please just say so.  In doing that, you'll be giving the world a Slow gift of your own :)  


• • • • • • •

Other ways to support this campaign


We know some people may like the project, but can't contribute financially. If that’s you, you can still contribute to this campaign by helping us spread the word in the following ways:

> Share this campaign with your friends, family, and anyone else you think might be interested.  You can use IndieGogo’s sharing tools, or just send people the link.

> ‘Like’ our page on Facebook SlowLab - A Slow Design Network and share our posts with your personal network.

> Follow us on Twitter @slowlab and re-Tweet to your own followers.

> Join our mailing list on the homepage of slowLab's web site to stay up to date about Slow design ideas and activities.

> Send us your good vibes... it works!


• • • • • • •

But wait, back up… What exactly is Slow design??

Slow design is an emerging field that offers an expanded set of values and conditions for sensing and moving toward more sustainable forms of living.  

It’s a way of thinking holistically.  It’s a tool for investigation.  And it’s a seeding process that can transform how we view, experience and affect the world we live in.  

At a time when ‘fast’ has become the default pace of living, Slow design reminds us that there are other speeds and rhythms for engaging the people, places, and information around us.  It challenges dominant habits of material consumption and expands our spatial, relational and sensory consciousness. It encourages us to trust and collaborate with others in ways that Slow consumption and strengthen communities, like turning to the person next to you when you have a question rather than looking it up on Google, or initiating a project in your neighborhood. And it helps bring awareness and intention to our cultural values and rituals, from celebrating traditional know-how to being mindful and critical about the role of technology in our lives.


• • • • • • •

The Slow Design Knowledge Index and how it might work...

Again, think of this online platform as a giant honeycomb filled up with an inspiring array of Slow design ideas, artifacts, tools, people, actions, resources, and research-to-date.

For design novices, the Slow Design Knowledge Index offers an informative and stimulating introduction to Slow design.  Visitors can forge individual paths of discovery or can choose to follow the traces of inquiry left by others. Dynamically linking through projects and keywords will bring them to deeper levels of understanding of Slow design and encourage them to exercise design agency in their own lives.

Let’s say your curious about the topic ‘Time’ in relation to Slow design. Perhaps your interest was piqued after streaming one of the Long Now Foundation's  brilliant seminars on long-term thinking, you’ve just seen a compelling work by the Dutch artist Germaine Kruip or the Japanese photographer  Hiroshi Sugimoto in a book or museum, or maybe you’re just overwhelmed by the feeling that there aren’t enough hours in the day

On the Slow Design Knowledge Index, you can choose this topic, try typing in the name of a project, an individual or organization, or select from a wide range of keywords like ‘transience,’ deceleration,’ ‘rhythm,’ or ‘enduring’.

Depending on your choice, the platform will offer up a menu of projects, tools and resources to explore:  You might encounter the Society for the Deceleration of Time based in Austria. Or be introduced to Eco-Cathedral Thinking, a philosophy about time in spatial processes championed by urban visionary Louis Le Roy.  You might find artifacts like Icelandic designer Thorunn Arnadottir’s Sasa Clock, a Slow timepiece that encourages people to relax and let time flow (‘Sasa’ is a word from African Kiswahili culture meaning ‘What is now’), or Takumi Endo’s TypeTrace, a software application that records the unique rhythm of an author’s keystrokes, revealing otherwise invisible, intimate details underlying the text.  You could be linked to a blog post by performance artist Julia Mandle about Slowness Here, a Slowing exercise with students from the Amsterdam Architecture Academy, or directed to resources like Hare Brain, Tortoise Mind,  British psychologist Guy Claxton’s in-depth book about the importance of the Slow Mind.

Each of these unique entries offers the opportunity to go deeper:  To learn in more detail about the creative or technical processes involved.  To discover related areas of research and the people who are conducting it.  And so on.


• • • • • • •

Last but not least, here are images related to the 'perks' you'll receive when you support the campaign...

$15 perk >  ‘Ask Me Why’ posters, shown here side by side as a triptych‘Ask Me Why’ posters, side by side as a triptych


$15 perk >  'Private Times In Public Places,' the first album of the band Slow Six, pictured herePortrait of the band Slow Six


$25 > 'Slow Design Reader' preview edition Slow Design Reader preview edition


$50 > 'Slow Dialogue Toolkit' for hosting a Slow dialogue in your community.  Shown here is a Slow dialogue held in London in 2010 with (left to right) Carolyn Strauss, Andre Viljoen, Alastair Fuad-Luke, Bas Kools, Helen Carnac, Julia Lohmann, and Stuart WalkerA Slow dialogue held in London with (left to right) Carolyn Strauss, Andre Viljoen, Alastair Fuad-Luke, Bas Kools, Helen Carnac, Julia Lohmann, and Stuart Walker


$75 perk > ReMark Series porcelain cups by Studio BoomWehmeyerReMark Series porcelain cups by Studio BoomWehmeyer

ReMark Series porcelain cups by Studio BoomWehmeyer


$100 perk > Set of two ‘Open & Close’ doorstops by Marijke Annema‘Open & Close’ doorstops by Marijke Annema

‘Open & Close’ doorstops by Marijke Annema


$225 perk > ‘These Things Take Time’ silkscreen print by Hrafnhildur Helgadottir

‘These Things Take Time’ silkscreen print by Hrafnhildur Helgadottir


$500 perk > ‘Pictures Maps Shadows’ diptych of two photographs by Leslie Grant‘Pictures Maps Shadows’ by Leslie Grant: community found photo

 'Pictures Maps Shadows' by Leslie Grant, interior of salt mine


$1000 perk > ‘Ask Me Why I’m Slow’ wearable ribbon‘Ask Me Why I’m Slow’ wearable ribbon with custom stitching by Dima Stefanova

‘Ask Me Why I’m Slow’ wearable ribbon with custom stitching by Dima Stefanova




Find This Campaign On
raised in 2 months
26% funded
No time left
$15,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on June 8, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $5USD

    Your name listed as a supporter on project materials, now and into the future. THANK YOU for believing in this project :)

    2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $15USD

    Choose one of the three different posters featuring three beautiful members of slowLab's international network: Jogi (India), Lotte (Netherlands) and Bill (Ireland). The portraits were made by Beijing and Amsterdam-based photographer Qiu Yang. To learn more about the project 'Ask Me Why I'm Slow,' look here: www.slowlloyd.slowlab.net/ASK-ME-WHY

    1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $15USD

    A digital download of the album 'PRIVATE TIMES IN PUBLIC PLACES' by the New York-based band Slow Six, featuring American composer/musician/software engineer Christopher Tignor. The long-form music of Slow Six is mesmerizing and addictive. Learn more and hear samples at www.slowsix.com

    3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $25USD

    Take a sneak peek at the SLOW DESIGN READER, a collection of writings by leading thinkers and actors from the Slow design movement. You'll receive an early-beta version of this material. Not only will you be the first to see it, but you'll also become part of the community that helps to shape it. We'll look to you to provide feedback and new ideas about how people will access, navigate and actively use the information in this volume.

    11 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $50USD

    This is a reward that's immaterial, but with a lot of substance. We'll provide you with a toolkit for hosting a Slow dialogue in your organization, business or locality. Your local Slow dialogue will be announced via slowLab's newsletter. NOTE: Pledge $150 for this perk and get personalized Skype support for your local Slow dialogue.

    4 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $75USD

    ONE 'REMARK SERIES' PORCELAIN CUP by Dutch-German design studio BoomWehmeyer. These cups are part of a project of raising design consciousness and forging Slower relationships in China and beyond. Learn more about BoomWehmeyer's work here: www.boomwehmeyer.com

    1 out of 35 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $100USD

    Set of 'OPEN & CLOSE' DOORSTOPS hand-crafted by Frisian designer Marijke Annema. The doorstops were inspired by a story about interpersonal trust and community-building. They come in pairs of two: one for you and one for your neighbor. Marijke Annema’s work as a socially-minded product designer brings people into more intimate contact with their environment and with one another. Her recent work can be seen at www.marijkeannema.com

    3 out of 50 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $225USD

    A limited editon silkscreen print by Icelandic artist Hrafnhildur Helgadottir. This item Slows us down reminds us that everything has its own rhythm. Time is (literally) on our side when we allow things to express themselves and flow at their natural pace. Prints are in A3 format (16.5x11.7") on archival paper, and are signed and numbered by the artist. See some recent work of this young, rising art star at www.hrafnhildurhelgadottir.info

    2 out of 25 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $500USD

    A diptych of TWO HIGH QUALITY PRINTS FROM 'PICTURES MAPS SHADOWS' by New York-based documentary photographer Leslie Grant. Side by side, these images (one by the artist and one a found photo) reveal how Leslie Grant uses photography as a 'Slow way of knowing.' Prints are 20x24" digital C-prints, signed and numbered by the artist. Learn more about the project at www.slowlab.net/picturesmaps.html

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $1,000USD

    A limited edition 'ASK ME WHY I'M SLOW' WEARABLE RIBBON. slowLab handmade a very-limited collection of these for people to display their pride in personal Slowness, while triggering others around them. You'll get one that's made unique with custom hand-stitching by Bulgarian graphic artist and media designer Dima Stefanova Dima Stefanova is partner in Ice Cream design studio and the creator of Know How Show How, a project about sharing personal knowledge. Learn more at www.icecreamdesign.net

    1 out of 6 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2013
  • $2,500USD

    A private 2-DAY SLOW DESIGN WORKSHOP INTENSIVE facilitated by slowLab founder Carolyn Strauss and with participation of local network members. We'll share our tools and knowledge with you, your organization, school, or enterprise The workshops are offered in New York (USA) or Amsterdam (NL). Additional costs apply if you'd like us to travel to your location.

    0 out of 4 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $5,000USD

    The week-long format goes deeper into what Slow design is and gets specific about what it can do for you. We'll have time not only to share our tools and knowledge with you, but also to co-design new scenarios for your organization, enterprise or locality. The workshops are offered in New York (USA) or Amsterdam (NL). Additional costs apply if you'd like us to travel to your location.

    0 out of 2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
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