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In this guest essay, Silvio Lorusso weaves together various themes and issues central to 21st century Western art and design school: professional "proprioception", the role of the intellectual, self-design, the problem of access to problems, the persistence of the two cultures, the spectacle of self-aggrandizing ethics, and the ethos of compromise.
How does the art and design school produce its subjects, namely professional designers? What values, criteria and mechanisms are tacitly or explicitly deployed in education? Over the last two years especially, we have seen the effects of these changes to design education play out through the compounding crises of the pandemic, austerity, the erosion of corporate accountability and the exploitation of the artist via extractive digital platforms. While the future is conceived in other parts of the world, the art and design schools of Europe and North America flounder, compromising the futures of the next generation of artists and designers.