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Scratching the Surface is a podcast about design, theory, and creative practice. Hosted by Jarrett Fuller, each episode features wide-ranging conversations with designers, architects, writers, academics, artists, and theorists about how design shapes culture. Previous guests include architecture critic Paul Goldberger, MoMA design curator Paola Antonelli, architect and OMA partner Reinier de Graaf, Pentagram partner Michael Bierut, RISD President Rosanne Somerson, writer Kurt Andersen, and d ...
 
EJ Scott has in depth conversations with celebrity guests, actors, writers, directors, producers, comedians, improvisers, comic book artists and writers, musicians, legends and up and comers. Conversational, open, honest and humorous. Guests that brought you The Walking Dead, VEEP, True Blood, Marvel's Daredevil, Marvel's Luke Cage, Areested Development, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, Stranger Things, Breaking Bad, Saturday Night Live, MADtv, The Good Wi ...
 
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Liam Young is a speculative architect and director whose work spans design, fiction, and futures. He is cofounder of Tomorrows Thought Today, an urban futures think tank, and Unknown Fields, a nomadic research studio. He is also the director of the Masters in Fiction and Entertainment program at SCI Arc. His latest project is Planet City, a story o…
 
Nicole Killian is a graphic designer and educator whose work spans design, publishing, video, and installation. They are currently co-director of the Design, Visual Communications MFA and associate professor of graphic design at Virginia Commonwealth University. In this conversation, Jarrett and Nicole talk about studying at the Bauhaus and Cranbro…
 
Robert A.M. Stern is an architect, teacher, and writer. He is the founder of Robert A.M. Stern Architects, served as dean of the Yale School of Architecture from 1998 to 2016, hosted the PBS series Pride of Place in 1986, and served on the board of directors for the Walt Disney Corporation from 1992 to 2003. He’s the author, most recently, of Betwe…
 
Lydia Kallipoliti is an architect, engineer, and scholar. She is an assistant professor at the Cooper Union School of Architecture, the author of the book The Architecture of Closed Worlds and is the co-curator of the 2022 Tallinn Architecture Biennale. In this conversation, Jarrett and Lydia talk about being an architect who doesn’t build, Lydia’s…
 
Chris Rudd is a designer, community organizer, and youth worker. He’s currently a professor of community-driven design at IIT Institute of Design and founder of ChiByDesign, a black-owned and people-of-color led human-centered design firm. In this conversation, Jarrett and Chris talk about the intersection of community organizing and design, the li…
 
LinYee Yuan is the founder and editor of MOLD, a print and digital magazine about designing the future of food. She previously was an editor for Core77, the entrepreneur in residence at Quartz, and has written about design, art, and food for Food52, Design Observer, Cool Hunting, and Elle Decor. In this conversation, Jarrett and LinYee talk about t…
 
Zara Arshad is a curator and researcher interested in twentieth- and twenty first-century material and visual culture, liminal spaces, speculative histories, and design futures. She documented contemporary design in China, conducted oral histories on South Korean graphic design, and operates a speculative design practice with media artist Yaloo. In…
 
Justin Beal is an artist and writer based in New York. His first book, Sandfuture, is both a biography of the architect Minoru Yamasaki and a personal memoir about our relationships to the built world. In this conversation, Jarrett and Justin talk about how this book came together to uncover how he arrived at its unusual structure and format, what …
 
Michael Gericke joined Pentagram in 1985, originally working for Colin Forbes before becoming a partner himself (making him the second longest-serving Pentagram partner!). His new monograph, Graphic Life, collects much of the work he’s done at the studio across environmental projects, posters, and identity design. In this conversation, Jarrett and …
 
Sean Anderson is an Associate Professor and Director of the B.Arch. Program at Cornell. He previously was the Associate Curator in the Department of Architecture and Design at MoMA where he most recently co-organized Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America with Mabel O. Wilson. In this wide-ranging conversation, Jarrett and Sean talk…
 
Lorraine Wild is a designer who teaches and writes. A graduate of Cranbrook Academy of Art and Yale School of Art, Lorraine runs Green Dragon Office in Los Angeles and is on the faculty of the graphic design program at California Institute of Arts. She’s written extensively about graphic design for a variety of publications. In this wide-ranging co…
 
Lorne Buchman is the president of ArtCenter College of Design and the author of the new book, Make To Know: From Spaces of Uncertainty to Creative Discovery. He also hosts the podcast Change Lab: Conversations on Transformation and Creativity. In this episode, Jarrett and Lorne talk about new ways of thinking about creativity, his background in the…
 
Fleur Watson is the Executive Director and Chief Curator for the Centre for Architecture Victoria | Open House Melbourne and the author of the new book, The New Curator: Exhibiting Architecture and Design. She previously was curator at Design Hub Gallery at RMIT and an editor-in-chief at Monument magazine. In this episode, Jarrett and Fleur talk ab…
 
Charles Saumarez Smith is the author of The Art Museum in Modern Times, an architectural history of art museums. He previously was the Secretary and Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Arts in London and before this served as director of both the National Portrait Gallery and the National Gallery. In this conversation, Jarrett and Charles talk …
 
Jarrett Fuller is a designer, writer, educator, and host of Scratching the Surface. In this special episode celebrating both Scratching the Surface’s fifth anniversary and our 200th episode, Jarrett turns the tables on himself and and answers questions submitted by listeners like who would he like to bring back from the dead to interview? How’s the…
 
Esther Choi is a multidisciplinary artist and architectural historian. In 2019, she published Le Corbuffet, a Fluxus-inspired artist's book that adopts the form of a cookbook and in 2020, she started Office Hours, a socially-engaged initiative that cultivates the sharing of knowledge among practitioners who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People…
 
Nina Paim is a designer, researcher, curator, educator, and activist. She is currently the director of Futuress, an editorial platform about feminism, design, and politics. She co-edited the book Design Struggles: Intersecting Histories, Pedagogies, and Perspectives and edited Taking A Line for A Walk. In this episode, Jarrett and Nina talk about F…
 
Guus Beumer was the general and artistic director of Het Nieuwe Instituut from 2013 to 2021. Before this, he was director of NAI Maastricht and Marres Center for Contemporary Culture. In this episode, Jarrett and Guus talk about the founding of Het Nieuwe Instituut, institutional administration as a design process, and balancing stability and insta…
 
Aric Chen is a curator, writer, and design historian. He was recently appointed the general and artistic director of Rotterdam’s Het Nieuwe Institute (The New Institute) and previously served as curatorial director for Design Miami, curator at large for M+ and creative director of Beijing Design Week. He also is a professor and founding director of…
 
Bryony Quinn is a writer, editor, and educator. She teaches in design programs at the University of East London, London College of Communication, Royal College of Art, and Camberwell College and has written or edited for a variety of publications and books like Bricks from the Kiln and Failed States. In this conversation, Jarrett and Bryony talk ab…
 
Zak Kyes is the creative director and founder of Zak Group where he leads projects for cultural and commercial clients across scales and mediums. From 2006 to 2016, he was the art director of the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London and in 2007 he curated with Mark Owens Forms of Inquiry: The Architecture of Critical Graphic D…
 
Tereza Ruller is an Amsterdam-based designer and educator. She is the co-founder of The Rodina, post-critical design studio with an experimental practice drenched in strategies of performance art, play, and subversion. She’s also the author of Action to Surface, a theory of performative design. In this conversation, Jarrett and Tereza talk about wh…
 
Tobias Revell is a designer, artist, educator, and administrator. He is currently Program Director of Graphic Design at the London College of Communication, a founding director of the design research consultancy Strange Telemetry, and is working on a PhD in Design at Goldsmiths. In this conversation, Jarrett and Tobias talk about working between ar…
 
Glenn Adamson is a curator and writer who works at the intersection of craft, design history, and contemporary art. He’s the author, most recently, of Craft: An American History. He previously was the director of the Museum of Arts and Design, head of research at the V&A, and curator at the Chipstone Foundation. In this conversation, Jarrett and Gl…
 
Michael Kimmelman is the architecture critic at The New York Times. Prior to this role, he created the Abroad column while based in Berlin and was the chief art critic. He’s also the founder and editor-at-large of Headway, a new venture focused on global challenges and progress. In this conversation, Jarrett and Michael talk about how he transition…
 
Todd Oldham has designed fashion and furniture, books and interiors. He’s also published books on Charley Harper, Alexander Girard, Nest, and Joan Jett. In this wide-range and inspiring conversation, Jarrett and Todd talk about growing up in creative households, Todd’s move from fashion to book publishing, and building a multidisciplinary practice.…
 
Alexandra Cunningham Cameron is a curator of contemporary design and the Hintz Secretarial Scholar at the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum. At Cooper Hewitt, she organized the first retrospective fashion designer Willi Smith that includes an exhibition, book, and online archive. Previously, she was a curator at Design Miami and the editor in chief of Th…
 
Willo Perron is a designer, creative director, and partner of Perron-Roettinger whose work spans branding, interiors, and live performance. Willo has designed stage sets, packaging, and marketing material for artists like Kanye West, JAY-Z, St. Vincent, and Rihanna as well as branding and retail design for Adidas, Yeezy, and American Apparel. In th…
 
Deyan Sudjic likely needs no introduction. From 2006 to 2020, he was the director of London’s Design Museum, he was a founding editor of Blueprint, editor of Domus from 2000 to 2004, and was an architecture and design critic for The Observer and The Guardian. He’s also published a handful of books and has taught at both Kingston University and The …
 
Mike Essl is dean and associate professor at Cooper Union. He co-founded the design firm The Chopping Block, worked at Mule Design, and has taught at Parsons School of Design and School of Visual Arts. In this episode, we talk about disciplinary boundaries in design education, how teaching reignited his love for design, and why Cooper Union changed…
 
Beatrice Galilee is a curator, critic, and editor. She’s currently the founder and executive director of The World Around and is the author of the new book, Radical Architecture of the Future. She previous was the curator of contemporary architecture and design at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, architecture editor for Icon Magazine, and has curate…
 
Dori Tunstall is a design anthropologist, public intellectual, and design advocate who works at the intersections of critical theory, culture, and design. She’s currently the Dean of Design at Ontario College of Art and Design and previously taught at Swinburne University and the University of Illinois Chicago. In this episode, Jarrett and Dori tal…
 
Brendan Cormier is a curator, editor, and designer. He’s currently a design curator at the Victoria & Albert Museum and was previously managing editor of Volume magazine and an urban designer and planner. In this episode, Jarrett and Brendan talk about how urbanism influences his work as a curator, using objects to tell stories, and the intersectio…
 
Milton S. F. Curry is dean and professor at the University of Southern California School of Architecture and holds the Della & Harry MacDonald Dean’s Chair in Architecture. He previously taught at University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Arizona State University, Harvard, and Cornell. He also edited the journals Cr…
 
Jeanne Gang is an architect, teacher, and the founding principal and partner of Studio Gang. The studio’s research-driven practice encourages intellectual curiosity and formal exploration across projects ranging from books and publications up to skyscrapers and urban planning. In this wide-ranging conversation, Jarrett and Jeanne talk about the rol…
 
Sarah Meister was recently named the next executive director of Aperture, beginning in May 2021. Before this she was a Curator in the photography department at MoMA since 2009. In this episode, recorded before her appointment at Aperture, Jarrett and Sarah talk about the challenges in curating photography when everyone is a photographer, the parall…
 
Karla Britton and Robert McCarter are the editors of Modern Architecture and the Lifeworld: Essays in Honor of Kenneth Frampton, a fascinating collection of writing that responds to, expands upon, and honors the great architecture writer, educator, and historian Kenneth Frampton. In this episode, Jarrett talks with Karla and Robert about the Frampt…
 
Ashley Mendelsohn is an architecture curator, educator, and multidisciplinary designer focused on engaging and strengthening communities by demystifying the barriers to access and understanding. From 2015 to 2020, she was the Assistant Curator of Architecture and Digital Initiatives at the Guggenheim Museum and previously founded the 40 Kirkland Ga…
 
Nina Valerie Kolowratnik is an architect, researcher, and PhD candidate at the Human Rights Centre at Ghent University. Her research focuses on indigenous people’s knowledge in human rights courts, migration, and notational systems. She’s the author of the book The Language of Secret Proof: Indigenous Truth and Representation. In this episode, Jarr…
 
Julia Watson is a designer, activist, leading expert on indigenous technologies. She’s the author of Lo—TEK: Design for Radical Indigenism, teaches in the design programs at Harvard and Columbia, and runs Julia Watson Studio, an experimental landscape and urban design studio. In this conversation, recorded live at the 2020 AIGA Design Conference, J…
 
Daniel Barber is an Associate Professor of Architecture and Chair of the Graduate Group in Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design. His research focuses on architecture and climate change, both historic and contemporary. He is the author, most recently, of Modern architecture and Climate: Design before Air Co…
 
Denis Weil is the dean of IIT Institute of Design in Chicago. After studying chemical engineering, Denis has worked across every sector of the design industry, from product design to marketing, including leading design and innovation at McDonald’s, studying civic design at Harvard, and serving as an innovation fellow for Bloomberg Philanthropies. I…
 
Martha Thorne is the Dean of IE School of Architecture and Design and the executive director of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, a latter of which she’s held since 2005 and will be stepping down from next month. Previously she was Associate Curator of Architecture at the Art Institute of Chicago. In this episode, Jarrett and Martha talk about the e…
 
Robert Wiesenberger is a curator and historian of modern and contemporary art, design, and architecture. He is currently the Associate Curator of Special Projects at The Clark Art Institute and on the faculty at Williams Graduate Program in Art History. He previously was a curatorial fellow at the Harvard Art Museum where he worked with the Bauhaus…
 
Jarrett Earnest is an artist and writer. His book, What It Means To Write About Art: Interviews with Art Critics, was released in 2018 and features longform interviews with art writers, historians, theorists, and critics. Jarrett’s writing has appeared in The Brooklyn Rail, The Village Voice, Vulture, and The Los Angeles Review of Books. In this ep…
 
Spencer Bailey is a writer, editor, and journalist. He is the co-founder of the media company The Slowdown and the author of the book In Memory of: Designing Contemporary Memorials. He’s also editor-at-large for Phaidon, contributing editor at Town and Country and was previously the editor-in-chief at Surface. In this episode, Jarrett and Spencer t…
 
Janet Abrams is a writer, editor, journalist, and artist. Her new book, Daddy Wouldn’t Buy Me a Bauhaus: Profiles in Architecture and Design, collects her profiles of designers like Rem Koolhaas, Frank Gehry, Muriel Cooper, and Paul Rand from her time writing for Blueprint and I.D. magazine. In this episode, Jarrett and Janet reflect on the design …
 
Alice Grandoit, Nu Goteh, and Marquise Stillwell are the co-founders of Deem, a new journal that positions design as a social practice. Their first issue, Design for Dignity, features a range of stories, interviews, and profiles of practitioners both inside and outside design. In this conversation, Jarrett talks with them about Deem’s goals, openin…
 
Nikil Saval is a writer, editor, activist, and the newly elected Pennsylvania state senator. He was previously a co-editor of n+1 and wrote about design, architecture, and urbanism for The New Yorker and The New York Times. In this episode, recorded right before the election, Jarrett and Nikil talk about the intersection of design and politics, how…
 
Alicia Cheng is a founding partner of the New York design studio MGMT and the author of the book This Is What Democracy Looked Like: A Visual History of the Printed Ballot. She previously worked as a designer for Method, was a co-design director at the Cooper Hewitt, and is currently an external critic for the MFA program at RISD. In this episode, …
 
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