SVA MA Design Research

SVA MA Design Research, Writing & Criticism1 is a one-year graduate program2
devoted to the study of design, its contexts & consequences.
Our graduates have gone on to pursue research-related careers in publishing, education, museums, institutes, design practice, entrepreneurship, & more.3

  1. Formerly known as D-Crit
  2. About the program
  3. Applications accepted on a rolling basis. All successful candidates awarded a significant scholarship!
SVA MA Design Research

136 W 21st St, 2nd Floor

New York, NY 10011





(212) 592-2228

Aileen Kwun & Bryn Smith: Authors of “Twenty Over Eighty: Conversations on a Lifetime in Design” – SVA MA Design Research

Aileen Kwun & Bryn Smith: Authors of “Twenty Over Eighty: Conversations on a Lifetime in Design”

Editors (and DCrit alums) Aileen Kwun and Bryn Smith interviewed twenty architecture and design luminaries over the age of eighty and collected their sparkling insights into a book published this year by Princeton Architectural Press. In this talk, the authors will discuss the process of creating Twenty Over Eighty and the lessons learned, about developing this kind of book and from speaking with these great design minds. Hear about their revelatory conversations with graphic designers Seymour Chwast, Milton Glaser, Lora Lamm, and Deborah Sussman; architects Michael Graves, Denise Scott Brown, and Stanley Tigerman; urbanist Jane Thompson; industrial designer Charles Harrison; furniture designer Jens Risom; and critic Ralph Caplan—creators, thinkers, and pioneers whose lifelong dedication to experimentation and innovation continues to shape their disciplines well into their ninth decade.

Aileen is a Senior Editor at Dwell magazine. With a focus on art, architecture, and design, her work has appeared internationally in publications including The Architect’s Newspaper, Detail, Disegno, Domus, Grafik, Icon, and RUM; as well as Jon Sueda’s All Possible Futures: Unrealized Archive and Colophon Foundry’s Five Years. From 2011–2014, she worked at the multidisciplinary design studio Project Projects, and was previously on the editorial staffs of Metropolis and Surface, where she profiled legendary figures including Robert Irwin, Nathalie du Pasquier, Phyllis Lambert, Arthur Elgort, and Iris Apfel. A founding partner of editorial design consultancy Superscript, she holds degrees from the School of Visual Arts, UC Berkeley, and the Columbia School of Journalism, and has received awards from Core77 and AIGA/Winterhouse for her critical essays on visual culture. Aileen is a visiting thesis advisor at Pratt Institute’s graduate department of Communications Design.

Bryn Smith is a graphic designer, writer, and critic. She is co-editor of Design for People: Stories About How (and Why) We All Can Work Together to Make Things Better (Metropolis Books, 2016). Bryn studied Journalism and New Media at the University of Colorado before starting her own multidisciplinary practice in 2002. She received her MFA in Design Criticism from the School of Visual Arts. Bryn writes about design and visual culture for Core77, and AIGA Eye on Design, among others, and was the project director for the recently launched Seymour Chwast Archive. She teaches in the graduate graphic design department at RISD.