The Agency of Design is a London based studio founded by multidisciplinary group of designers who state:
Having witnessed the unhappy ending of products, the studio was founded around the concept of human agency, we wanted to demonstrate that the agency of design was about the potential of design to create change in the world. It is from this ethos that we focus on design that creates a more desirable future. (The Agency of Design 2016)
Their work ranges from commercially realist product design, digital/virtual solutions, guides and instructions through to provocative projects that stimulate debate.
The example shown above is from a range of three toasters designed to illustrate potential future directions that designers could take simple domestic products to promote more sustainable consumption.
There are many other examples on their website of products aiming to create a better future. This includes more sustainable design, as seen with the ‘Design Out Waste‘ project, solutions to infection control in hospitals with the ‘PullClean Door Handle‘ and the ‘Digesting Science‘ project which culminated in a website used to explain Multiple Sclerosis to children whose parents have the condition.
I find their work both exciting and highly accessible, there is a real mix of pragmatic problem solving and speculative ‘critical design’.
Having been enthralled by the work of Dunne and Raby ,but finding their work in speculative design sometimes difficult to rationalise, it is refreshing to find a group whose work appeals to such an extent.