In 2009, a pair of 20-something designers had an idea: a design museum for Boston. But rather than reach for a building, the founders and future codirectors of Design Museum Boston, Sam Aquillano and Derek Cascio, threw a pizza party—and spread their belief in design throughout the city.
Nearly four years later, through wide-ranging collaborations with colleagues and institutions, the duo has wrangled exhibits and projects ranging from Retail: Retell. Recycle. Rethink, an exhibition on sustainable marketing, to a competition to design street seating for Boston’s booming Fort Point Channel. In July 2011, Design Museum Boston, in collaboration with the City of Boston and the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to use design to build community and increase the livability of the South Boston Waterfront, home to the city’s burgeoning Innovation District. Over the past 18 months, DMB has cut across individual constituencies to unite this diverse community in ways no one thought possible.
Sponsored by the Pacific Northwest College of Art, Aquillano and Cascio will bring their concepts to Portland in late January, culminating with a Portland design community town hall at Portland Monthly’s Bright Lights.
About Sam Aquillano
Sam Aquillano manages key programs and day-to-day operations for Design Museum Boston. He is also an adjunct professor of design and entrepreneurship, as well as an MBA candidate, at Babson College and a member of the Massachusetts Creative Economy Council. He graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology with a degree in industrial design.
About Derek Cascio
Derek Cascio develops design education and public programs for Design Museum Boston. He is a product designer, an illustrator, and an adjunct faculty member at Wentworth Institute of Technology. Derek is a 2006 graduate from Massachusetts College of Art and Design, where he received his BFA in industrial design.
Bright Lights: Discussions on the City is a monthly series presented by Portland Monthly magazine with City Club of Portland designed to bring the region’s thought leaders to the stage in an informal, conversational setting. Past guests have included Congressman Earl Blumenauer, advertising guru Dan Wieden, and Portland State University president Wim Wiewel, along with candidates for mayor and the Metro council. Many past presentations can be found at vimeo.com/portlandmonthlymag/videos.