Outside Design, a collateral event of the first Chicago Architecture Biennial, will explore the turn in art and design toward biotechnology and ecological systems. Curated by Jonathan Solomon, SAIC’s Director of the Department of Architecture, Interior Architecture, and Designed Objects, this show will bring together five firms whose research-based work develops new knowledge at the edges of design practice. The practices—Analog Media Lab (Urbana-Champaign, IL), Ants of the Prairie (Buffalo, NY), The Living (New York City), Species of Space (Chicago), and Sweet Water Foundation (Chicago)—pursue projects that move outside of their core of expertise and into the center of other fields. Responding to these dialogic practices, the exhibition will be organized as a series of laboratories installed across the galleries, engaged throughout the fall by students, faculty, and visiting artists and designers. This mode of collaborative experimentation and exchange will continuously transform the gallery space, resulting in new projects and installations and pushing the boundaries of disciplinarity. An ambitious schedule of programs will further activate the space, and connect to local arts and design institutions.

Outside Design is curated by Jonathan Solomon, Director of Architecture, Interior Architecture and Designed Objects at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Organized as a series of laboratories, Outside Design features the ongoing design experiments of Five practices: Analog Media Lab, Ants of the Prairie, Species of Space, Sweet Water Foundation, and The Living. In addition to five laboratories, Outside Design presents a broad schedule of programs by collaborating participants: workshops, lectures, panels, walks, and class days with students.