“The goal of a designer is to listen, observe, understand, sympathize, empathize, synthesize, and glean insights that enable him or her to ‘make the invisible visible.’ –Hillman Curtis
Design is complex and thoroughly collaborative, with its different disciplines inextricably woven into each other. A good designer is aware of the fluidity of design – of how an architect must dip his toes in the waters of product design, and how graphic designers would have to stumble across the basics of user interface design. Creativity is rarely one dimensional, but oftentimes design education is just that.
This is where institutes like Anant National University come in. Committed to nurturing Solutionaries – people who are revolutionary in their thinking, but solution-oriented in their approach, AnantU is India’s first design university. What makes AnantU special is its unique approach to education. The university offers a multi-disciplinary curriculum for holistic learning, with an emphasis on experiential and peer learning. “Everything we do is geared towards a specific impact,” says Nidhi Goyal, Associate Dean of External Engagement. “We’ve existed as a school of architecture in the past, but as we became a University in 2016, we became more ambitious – both in terms of the scale of operations and the quality of excellence we aspire to achieve.”
Situated in a verdant campus in Ahmedabad, Anant National University’s infrastructure comprises collaborative classrooms, studio spaces and well-equipped workshops for climatology, carpentry, metalwork and ceramics. Keeping in mind the principles of sustainability that guide the future, the campus is being designed to be a net-zero campus and plans to become one of the greenest campuses in the world.
One of the primary principles AnantU’s pedagogy is based on is the freedom to carve one’s own learning journey. With a ‘learn first, choose later’ principle that exposes students to various tracks before they’re asked to pick their specialization, AnantU helps them make informed decisions about their academic paths. AnantU offers both Bachelors and Masters programmes, in various fields of design, along with a unique fellowship programme. To know more, head over to their website Anant National University.
*Design Pataki was part a Press Trip to Anant National University for this article.