Public Project is located in the Graduate Communications Design Department at Pratt Institute and was initiated by Jean Brennan and Gala Narezo in Fall 2011. David Frisco is a a more recent and natural addition to Public Project’s team.
Public Project’s mission is to use design to create conversations in the public sphere. We seek to broaden the educational experience of our students by organizing engagements with outside institutions, businesses and not-for-profit organizations. Centered around the themes of social practice, research, and entrepreneurship, students engage in opportunities to apply design to real world challenges. The initiative houses a publishing initiative to broadcast student research, critical writings, and formal design experiments to audiences beyond the Institute.
Jean Brennan is an adjunct associate professor in the graduate Communications Design department at Pratt Institute. In her own work, Jean is interested in exploring tactics of engaging the public on issues related to the environment, community and making. She has taught and developed curriculum around design as intervention, making in public and social impact. She also teaches design research, motion, and advises candidates on their thesis.
Gala Narezo is an artist whose work focuses on community and social impact. She is the co-founder of ‘what moves you?’ an organization that uses collaborative, multidisciplinary approaches to engage the public in advocacy issues. She also co-founded Indocumentales/Undocumentaries, an itinerant film and dialogue series on Mexican-US immigration. She was the NGO representative to the United Nations for Designmatters at ArtCenter College of Design for many years and is now teaching and creating educational, multi-stakeholder opportunities for Public Project at Pratt.
David Frisco is a designer and educator working in New York City, and an alum of Yale’s Graphic Design MFA program. He is the principal of DFD: David Frisco Design, a small design practice with an emphasis on the art, architectural, educational, cultural and non-profit sectors. David is an Adjunct Associate Professor in both the Undergraduate and Graduate Communications Design department at Pratt Institute, and teaches in the BFA, MS and MFA programs. As an educator, David has worked towards breaking down disciplinary and institutional boundaries, opening up the classroom to include more innovative, real-world and service-based learning. Recently, David formed IntraCollaborative a design collective comprised of his former Pratt MFA students. They are 2013 recipients of CUP Making Policy Public commission and have been selected for the Center for Architecture’s 2013 Graphic Designer Shortlist.