Wind Tunnel

Wind Tunnel Graduate Center for Critical Practice is a forum for events, conferences, exhibitions, residencies, screenings, and publications, centered around a former supersonic jet testing facility on ArtCenter's south campus. The Wind Tunnel GCCP is an initiative of the graduate programs in Art, Media Design Practices, and Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography at ArtCenter College of Design.

Symposiums & Events

September 22, 2016, 4–6 pm

MDP Summer Research 2016

With Sean Donahue, Ben Hooker, Elizabeth Goodman, and Maya Gurantz

October 6, 2016, 4–6 pm

David Townsend

MDP Design Dialogues + ArtCenter Educational Partners

October 21, 2016–March 17, 2017

Double Data: Typography + Data Visualization Exhibition

Curated by Brad Bartlett in the HMCT Gallery

October 21, 2016, 7–9 pm

Opening Reception

November 3, 2016, 4–6 pm

Janet Vertesi

MDP Design Dialogues + Toyota Lecture Series

November 7, 2016, 7:30–9:30 pm

Alain Badiou

Graduate Art Lecture Series

November 17–26, 2016

The Algorithm in the Room

MDP Design Dialogues Symposium + Exhibition with Tim Durfee, Ben Hooker, and Mimi Zeiger

November 17, 2016, 4–9 pm

Symposium + Opening Reception

December 1, 2016, 4–6 pm

The LEAP Dialogues Book: Insights from the frontlines of Design for Social Innovation and Policy

Panel discussion hosted by Dr. Mariana Amatullo, LEAP Dialogues lead editor, with Ryan Murray, Innovation Deputy, Mayor’s Office, City of Long Beach, and book contributors Sean Donahue and Dr. Laura Forlano.

MDP Design Dialogues + Toyota Lecture Series

December 5, 2016, 7:30–9:30 pm

Fred Moten

Graduate Art Lecture Series

December 15, 2015, 7-10 pm

Grad Art Open Studios + MDP Work-in-Progress Show

Wind Tunnel Gallery, Grad Art Galleries, and Hixon Courtyard

February 9, 2017, 4–6 pm

Elizabeth Chin, My Life with Things

MDP Design Dialogues + Toyota Lecture Series

March 2, 2017, 4–6 pm

Benjamin Bratton, The Stack

MDP Design Dialogues

March 9, 2017, 4-6 pm

Shannon McMullen and Fabian Winkler

MDP Design Dialogues

April 13-22, 2017

MDP Thesis Show

April 13, 2017, 5-8 pm

>MDP Thesis Symposium

April 20, 2017, 6-10 pm

MDP Thesis Show Reception + Grad Art Open Studios

Wind Tunnel Gallery, Grad Art Galleries, and Hixon Courtyard


Mariana Amatullo

Mariana Amatullo is the vice president of Designmatters, ArtCenter’s award-winning social impact department. Since co-founding Designmatters in 2001, and later expanding it into a graduate and undergraduate department, she has helped conceptualize and manage a portfolio of global educational design projects, research collaborations and publications at the intersection of art, design and social innovation.

Alain Badiou

Alain Badiou, Ph.D., born in Rabat, Morocco in 1937, holds the Rene Descartes Chair at the European Graduate School EGS. Alain Badiou was a student at the École Normale Supérieure in the 1950s. He taught at the University of Paris VIII (Vincennes-Saint Denis) from 1969 until 1999, when he returned to ENS as the Chair of the philosophy department. He continues to teach a popular seminar at the Collège International de Philosophie, on topics ranging from the great 'antiphilosophers' (Saint-Paul, Nietzsche, Wittgenstein, Lacan) to the major conceptual innovations of the twentieth century. Much of Badiou's life has been shaped by his dedication to the consequences of the May 1968 revolt in Paris. Long a leading member of Union des jeunesses communistes de France (marxistes-léninistes), he remains with Sylvain Lazarus and Natacha Michel at the center of L'Organisation Politique, a post-party organization concerned with direct popular intervention in a wide range of issues (including immigration, labor, and housing). He is the author of several successful novels and plays as well as more than a dozen philosophical works.

Benjamin H. Bratton

Benjamin H. Bratton is a Sociologist and Design Strategist based in Los Angeles. His research, writing, and practical interests include contemporary social theory, the perils and potentials of pervasive computing, architectural theory and provocation, inverse brand theory, software studies, and the rhetorics of exceptional violence.

Stuart Candy

Stuart Candy (@futuryst) is a producer, strategist and educator. He is best known for his influential work in experiential futures and design fiction, evoking worlds to come via tangible artifacts and immersive encounters. In the past decade, Stuart has worked around the world with governments at all levels, the Sydney Opera House, IDEO, Wired magazine, Institute for the Future, and General Electric. He has lectured at New York University, UC Berkeley, and the Royal College of Art, and run workshops at Yale, Singularity University, and the TED Conference. He has recently facilitated foresight processes for groups including the Singaporean government, the leadership of Oxford University, and Burning Man Australia.

Elizabeth Chin

Dr. Elizabeth Chin is an anthropologist whose research interests include children and childhood; consumption; dance; race; urban geography; Haiti. She approaches these from an ecumenical theoretical perspective, grounded in political economy, critical theory and a good dose of literary, artistic and post modern influences. PhD, Anthropology, City University of New York; BFA, Drama and Anthropology, NYU.

Sean Donahue

Sean Donahue is principal of Research-Centered Design, a Los Angeles-based design practice that explores how design can be utilized to make significant contributions to society. MFA, Media Design, Art Center College of Design; BA, Graphic Design, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Tim Durfee

Tim Durfee directs Tim Durfee Studio, and conducts his design research through amp - a studio he operates through Media Design Practices at Art Center College of Design. Previously, he taught architectural design at SCI-Arc, where he was Director of Visual Studies. His work engages a range of subjects and media - including buildings, constructed objects and spaces, video, interfaces, maps, and writing. He has an M.Arch from Yale University.

Laura Forlano

Laura Forlano is an Assistant Professor of Design at the Institute of Design at the Illinois Institute of Technology, where she is Director of the Critical Futures Lab. From 2009-2011, she was a Postdoctoral Associate in the Interaction Design Lab in the Departments of Communication and Information Science at Cornell University. Forlano’s research is on the role of information technology in supporting open innovation networks in urban environments with a specific emphasis on the use of mobile, wireless and ubiquitous computing technologies to support collaboration. Forlano received her Ph.D. in Communications from Columbia University in 2008. Her dissertation, “When Code Meets Place: Collaboration and Innovation at WiFi Hotspots,” explores the intersection between organizations, technology (in particular, mobile and wireless technology) and the role of place in communication, collaboration and innovation.

Elizabeth Goodman

Elizabeth Goodman has taught user experience research and tangible interaction design at the University of California, Berkeley and site-specific art practice at the San Francisco Art Institute. As well, she has worked with exploratory research and design teams at Intel, Fuji-Xerox, and Yahoo! She speaks widely on the design of mobile and pervasive computing systems at conferences, schools, and businesses. She has a masters degree in interaction design from the Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University, and a BA cum laude in art from Yale University. She received her PhD from the School of Information at the University of California, Berkeley in fall 2013. During graduate school, her scholarly research on interaction design practice has been supported by a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship and an Intel PhD Fellowship. She is a co-author of the widely used design research handbook, Observing the User Experience, published by Morgan Kaufmann, and Designing Connected Products, from O’Reilly Media. Currently, she is a design researcher and UX strategist at 18F, a design group within the General Services Administration.

Maya Gurantz

Maya Gurantz is an artist who makes videos, performances, movement-based works, installations, and community-generated projects. She uses these diverse media to interrogate how constructions of gender, race, class and progress operate in American communities, shared myths, public rituals and private desires; in so doing, she dissects the contradictions embedded in performances of power. Formally, she draws on her extensive background in movement-based theater and dance, as well as historical vernacular forms of manipulating sensation. Her work has been shown by the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, High Desert Test Sites, Human Resources, Autonomie Gallery, LAX ART, workspace gallery, GLAMFA, and Movement Research at Judson Church. She recently completed her first public video art commission from the Great Wall of Oakland, in collaboration with artist Ellen Sebastian Chang. Shhe was a 2014 Visualist in Residence with the Institute of Cultural Inquiry. From 1998-2008, Ishewrote and directed original devised theater, creating new works in New York, rural Mississippi, San Diego, the SF Bay Area, and Los Angeles. She has a B.A. from Yale and an M.F.A. in Studio Art from UC Irvine. Check out her blog at

Ben Hooker

Ben Hooker is a designer and artist who works with interactive media in and about urban contexts. His projects, whether conceptual or applied, define new experiences and aesthetic situations which arise from the intermingling of the phenomenal and intangible worlds of physical materiality and electronic data. As daily life contains ever more windows into electronic spaces, and virtual realities increasingly occupy our minds, he investigates how site-specific media technologies can be employed to exploit the play between many realms to enable new kinds of technology-dependent lifestyles. He is Associate Professor and Core Faculty in the Media Design Practices graduate program at Art Center College of Design where he co-directs the new Post-Geographic City research group. Previously he was Visiting Faculty at Intel Research in Berkeley, where he worked as a ‘designer-in-residence’ on projects dealing with both urban and domestic computing. And, prior to that, he was a Research Fellow in the school of Architecture and Design at the Royal College of Art and final-year tutor in the Graphic Design program at Central Saint Martins College, London.

Jeff Maki

Jeff Maki helps organizations working at urban scale deploy technology to improve customer experience and operational outcomes. He is especially interested in public-private partnership, the role of the arts and culture in placemaking, and new approaches to service delivery—particularly transportation. Past clients include MTA/New York City Transit, NASA's Ames Research Center, The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, The City of New York and others.

Fred Moten

Fred Moten is author of In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition (University of Minnesota Press), Hughson’s Tavern (Leon Works), B. Jenkins (Duke University Press), The Feel Trio (Letter Machine Editions) and co-author, with Stefano Harney, of The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Study(Minor Compositions/Autonomedia). His current projects include two critical texts, consent not to be a single being (forthcoming from Duke University Press) and Animechanical Flesh, which extend his study of black art and social life, and a new collection of poems, The Little Edges.

Ryan Murray

Ryan Murray is the Innovation Deputy, Mayor’s Office, City of Long Beach. He worked in government and nonprofit settings in New York City for more than fifteen years, after moving from his childhood home of Barbados. His career has focused on building partnerships to address social and economic justice issues and create opportunity for those most vulnerable. Most recently, he worked for the New York City Mayor’s Office. There he oversaw external affairs, and learning and change management for innovation initiatives designed to reduce administrative burdens faced by human services providers, and to improve residents’ access to programs and benefits. Mr. Murray has also served as a direct social service and HIV/AIDS education practitioner, community organizer, and capacity building manager for a City Agency which administered youth, workforce and community development programs. He holds a Master’s in Public Health Degree from Hunter College, City University of New York.

Shannon McMullen and Fabian Winkler

Shannon McMullen, PhD and Fabian Winkler, MFA are interdisciplinary artists and researchers combining their backgrounds in new media art and sociology to produce collaborative artworks at the intersection of nature and technology, a research and creative practice they define as “critical gardening.” Their work has been shown internationally at venues such as Science Gallery Dublin, IE; VISAP’ 15 School of the Art Institute of Chicago, USA; VISAP '14, Paris, France; China Museum of Science and Technology, Beijing, China; EX3 Center for Contemporary Art, Florence, Italy; Art Center Nabi, Seoul, Korea; ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, Germany and the Spark Festival, Minneapolis, USA. They have also published articles in Leonardo (MIT Press), Plurale - Zeitschrift für Denkversionen (Berlin, Germany), Media-N (Journal of the New Media Caucus), Senses and Society (Berg Publishers) and The Environmentalist (Springer, New York). Their large-scale investigation of "Images of Nature" at the intersection of art, engineering and science was awarded a grant from the National Science Foundation. Shannon and Fabian teach in the Art, Culture and Technology Program at Purdue University in West Lafayette in Indiana, USA.

Joanne McNeil

Joanne McNeil is a writer interested in the ways that technology is shaping art, politics, and society. She is currently working on a book. She writes about things like broken iPhones, virtual assistants in airports, the Chelsea Manning trial, and the future of novels. Her essays and reviews have appeared in the New York Times, Domus, Dissent, Frieze, The Baffler, Modern Painters, Wired, The Los Angeles Times, Saturated Space, Dirty Furniture, The Boston Globe, n+1/Occupy Gazette, and other web and print publications. She is currently collaborating with Eyebeam on OurNet, developing student workshops on networks.

Jenny Rodenhouse

Jenny Rodenhouse is a multimedia designer and artist. Working within the field of interaction design, her research examines the merging of the interface and the landscape. Her projects explore the experiences, environments, and communities that may develop from the merging of these large scale systems [virtual and physical, artificial and natural, local and global]. Appropriating the test site as a design medium, she creates sites of experimentation that act as ways to prototype alternate realities. Through her conceptual and applied design practice, she collaborates with companies, startups, computer scientists, designers, architects, and artists.

John Szot

John Szot is an award-winning architect in New York City. His studio focuses on the relationship between technology and the locus of meaning in the built environment.

David Townsend

David Townsend is the Chief Designer at IBM heading up the Information Management portion of the portfolio—Cloud, Big Data, Analytics, Streams and Mobile—David is leading a global team of over 220 UX / UI Designers, Architects, Writers and Developers, redefining the future of software and how we run the planet. Formerly as the Chief Designer for Samsung STA, David created a new line of high-end devices now known as the Galaxy S, the number one-selling series of Smart Phones in the world. Under David’s leadership, Samsung’s North American studio—a portfolio of 18 billion dollars worth of smart phones, tablets and accessories—developed the overall physical concepts, designed the startup/down UI/UX, branding, packaging, and designed the CMF palettes with major carriers. While creating a minimal organic design for the physical side of the product, David created a minimal graphic design language for the UX/UI side of the experience. The result: an eco-system that encompasses both the digital and physical into one user experience.

Janet Vertesi

Janet Vertesi specializes in the sociology of science, knowledge, and technology. She has spent the past 7 years studying several NASA spacecraft teams as an ethnographer. Her book, Seeing like a Rover: Images and Interaction on the Mars Exploration Rover Mission (Chicago, 2014) draws on over two years of ethnographic immersion with the Mars Exploration Rover mission to show how scientists and engineers use digital images to conduct scientific research on another planet. She is currently working on follow up study of the NASA-ESA Cassini mission to Saturn focusing on the role of sociotechnical organization in research, data-sharing, and decision-making on robotic spacecraft teams. Vertesi is also interested in the digital sociology: whether studying computational systems in social life, shifting sociological methods online, or applying sociological insights to build new technologies. She holds a Master's degree from Cambridge and a PhD from Cornell, has received several grants from the National Science Foundation, and was awarded the Hacker-Mullins prize for best graduate student paper from the American Sociological Association, Science, Knowledge and Technology section in 2007.

Mimi Zeiger

Mimi Zeiger is a Los Angeles-based critic, editor, and curator. Her work is situated at the intersection architecture and media cultures. She is the West Coast Editor of the Architects Newspaper and she is the 2015 recipient of the Bradford Williams Medal for excellence in writing about landscape architecture. Zeiger is author of New Museums, Tiny Houses and Micro Green: Tiny Houses in Nature, and the forthcoming Tiny Houses in Cities. In 1997, Zeiger founded loud paper, an influential zine and digital publication dedicated to increasing the volume of architectural discourse.

She teaches in the Media Design Practices MFA program at Art Center College of Design and is co-president of the Los Angeles Forum for Architecture and Urban Design.


Graduate Art Graduate Art is an interdisciplinary Master of Fine Arts program that encourages divergent ideas and methods. With a core faculty of 10 internationally recognized artists and writers, 10 adjunct faculty and a total of 35 students, we have one of the lowest faculty-to-student ratio among comparable MFA programs. The result is an intense work environment where concentrated art-making is assured equally concentrated and careful attention, whether within specific disciplines or among them: in film, video, photography, painting, sculpture, installation, performance and everything in between.

Fundamental to our program are one-on-one studio visits with faculty and rigorous critical, academic and practical coursework. We extend our reach internationally, inviting artists and writers―famous and infamous―as well as historians and philosophers for weekly seminars and our biannual conference series. Coming from and going to Europe respectively, our artist-in-residence partnership and student exchange link us with programs in Paris, Berlin and Cologne.

Closer to home, indeed at home, is Los Angeles, one of the world’s great art capitals. Closer still is the world class design school to which we are connected, with leading edge software and hardware technology and the equipment that goes with it. On site, we provide students with individual studios, a fabrication shop, several gallery spaces, and dedicated computing and moving image production labs. We make our public gallery spaces and project rooms available to all candidates, from the first term through the fourth, when every graduating student mounts a final solo show.

The mission of the Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography is to set the global standard of excellence in typography and design education; provide a valuable service to the educational and professional communities as well as the public, reinforcing the meaning and value of typography; elevate and advance the teaching and understanding of both letterform design and typographic practice; and honor the past while also anticipating the future of typography in print, digital, and emerging media

Media Design Practices / Lab + Field brings interdisciplinary design practices to a world of cultural and technological change. Graduates get an MFA in Media Design through one of two tracks: Lab or Field.

In the Lab Track, students work with emerging ideas from technology, science, and culture, using design as a mode of critical inquiry in a studio context. External partners—from Caltech scientists to Silicon Valley engineers to offbeat cultural institutions—bring expertise, resources, and the latest advances into the studio.

In the Field Track, students work in a realworld context where social issues, media infrastructure, and communication technol-ogy intersect. A collaboration with Designmatters, Art Center’s social impact initiative, the curriculum includes firsthand experience in the field—from 2012–2016, students work with UNICEF’s TechDev Innovation Lab in Kampala, Uganda.

Location & Contact

Wind Tunnel Graduate Center for Critical Practice
Art Center College of Design
South Campus
950 S. Raymond Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91105

Enter through the Hixon Courtyard on Raymond Avenue. Take the Gold Line to Fillmore Station. Parking is free in lots north and south of the building.

For more information contact:

Media Design Practices
Kevin Wingate