Dezeen Magazine

Dezeen's top 10 live talks of 2021

Dezeen rounds up our top 10 live talks of the year as part of our review of 2021, featuring discussions with Neri Oxman, Es Devlin, Joseph Grima, Peter Saville and more.

Es Devlin for Dezeen 15

Es Devlin opened our Dezeen 15 festival this year, which celebrated Dezeen's 15th anniversary with a programme of cutting edge designers and architects presenting their manifestos for a better world.

Devlin joined us live from the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, where she had installed an indoor forest to serve as an events space. During the talk, Devlin presented her idea for a car-free future, and imagined looking back from 15 years in the future at the positive progress made since COP26.

Find out more about Es Devlin ›


Oliver Heath on biophilic design

Dezeen teamed up with CDUK for this live talk, hosted in Dezeen's new Studio Space in London. Biophilic designer Oliver Heath talked to Dezeen editor-in-chief Marcus Fairs about how biophilic design principles can help improve health and wellbeing.

Find out more about biophilic design ›


Joseph Grima on non-extractive architecture

In April, Space Caviar co-founder Joseph Grima spoke to Dezeen about his manifesto for a new mode of architecture that conserves the Earth's resources.

During the talk, Grima discussed how young architects are rejecting "cookie-cutter modernism" in favour of approaches that prioritise conserving the earth's resources, and proposed an overhaul of our current industrial economies.

Find out more about Joseph Grima ›


Neri Oxman for Dezeen 15

Closing the Dezeen 15 festival was designer Neri Oxman, who called for a "radical realignment between grown and built environments".

During the talk, Oxman also announced the launch of her new studio, OXMAN. "We envision it as a kind of a Bell Labs of the 21st century," she said, comparing it to the legendary innovation department of US telecoms giant AT&T.

Find out more about Neri Oxman ›


Sumayya Vally on the Serpentine Pavillion 2021

To celebrate the unveiling of the 2021 Serpentine Pavillion, Dezeen broadcast an in-person interview between Serpentine Gallery artistic director Hans Ulrich Obrist and architect Sumayya Vally.

Speaking from within Vally's pavilion, the pair discussed the influences and process behind her design for the annual commission.

Find out more about Sumayya Vally here ›


Gropius Bau and Hella Jongerius on weaving 

In this talk, artist Hella Jongerius and Stephanie Rosenthal, director of the Gropius Bau museum, discussed Jongerius' exhibition Woven Cosmos.

The speakers discussed the healing properties of weaving, and Jongerius' wider creative philosophy centred around design, sustainability and spiritualism.

Find out more about Hella Jongerius here ›


Rex Weyler on environmental activism and design

To celebrate Greenpeace's 50th anniversary, Dezeen hosted a panel discussion headed by ecologist and Greenpeace co-founder Rex Weyler, to discuss the role of designers in environmental activism.

Also joining the panel were Canadian architect Michael Green of Michael Green Architecture and Nina-Marie Lister, professor and graduate director of Urban & Regional Planning at Ryerson University.

Find out more about Greenpeace here ›


Peter Saville on his Technicolour collection for Kvadrat

Streamed live from 3 Days of Design in Copenhagen, this talk featured designer Peter Saville introducing his new Technicolour collection for Danish textile company Kvadrat.

The talk also included Kvadrat's vice president of design, Stine Find Osther, and Dienke Dekker, design manager of the brand's rug division.

Find out more about Peter Saville here ›


How game engines are transforming architecture with Epic Games

As part of our Redesign the World competition in collaboration with Epic Games, Dezeen hosted a live talk exploring how game engines like Twinmotion are changing architecture.

The talk discussed the future of virtual architecture and the growing link between video games and architecture.

Find out more about Epic Games here ›


Reiner de Graaf on his novel The Masterplan

In the last of our top 10 live talks, Dutch architect and OMA partner Reinier de Graaf unveiled details about his latest novel The Masterplan.

De Graaf was also joined by Russian architect Olga Aleksakova, the co-founder of the Buromoscow studio, and architect and writer Mahfuz Sultan.

Find out more about Reiner de Graaf here ›