Durst Organization

4 Times Square, 21st Floor


In conjunction with Design Pavilion, Design Talks NYC is a fascinating and culturally relevant conversation and story series featuring architecture, design, art and civic visionaries and creative leaders. Now its fourth year, the program returned in 2018 to 4 Times Square, one of the most recognized buildings in the world. The Durst Organization hosted the talks and conversations, as well as a press lounge for any credentialed journalist covering Design Pavilion and NYCxDesign.



  • Monday, May 14  •  3:00pm

    Industry Needs & Today's Students:
    Are Their Expectations the Same?

    This panel, assembled by Arts Thread, the leading digital platform for emerging artists and designers, explores:

    • Industry needs - which are often different from students' expectations
    • Survey results, generated by Arts Thread and WGSN, of industry perspective on recent graduates
    • Today's generation’s expectations of the work arena and how this has changed from the past
    • How to engage next generations - a two-way conversation
    • The areas of growth and global change in creative jobs



    Alex Brownless, Co-Founder and President, Arts ThreadDavid Hershkovits, Founder, Publisher, Editor-in-Chief, Paper MagAngus McGuffin, Global Creative Director, Avery DennisonEmily Anderson, Senior Manager of Art Direction, Herman MillerFrancis Wong, Global Creative Director and EVP, WGSNModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:


  • Monday, May 14  •  4:00pm

    Changing Role of Designers: How the convergence of physical and digital consumer experience is changing the role of designers

    An in depth discussion between leaders at the intersection of fashion, retail and tech, led by Angus Mcguffin, Creative + Digital Director at Avery Dennison, on the current emerging technologies in the ever evolving consumer experience and the consequential impact on the next generation of design talent.



    Angus McGuffin, Creative Director, Avery DennisonCarol Ross BarneyWilliam MenkingWilliam MenkingDalia Strum, Educator, The Fashion Institute of TechnologyCraig Crawford, CEO, Crawford Consulting


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Monday, May 14  •  5:00pm

    NYC Department of Sanitation presents

    Waste is a Design Flaw

    Every week, the average New Yorker throws out nearly 15 pounds of waste at home and another nine pounds of waste at work and in commercial establishments. Altogether, that adds up to more than six million tons of waste generated per year.


    What role do designers play in New York City’s waste ecosystem? And how can designers help the City achieve its ambitious goal of sending Zero Waste to Landfills by 2030? Join us to explore the latest creative solutions—from high-fashion textile up-cycling to new guidelines for building design.



    Kathryn Garcia, Commissioner, NYC Dept. of Sanitation
    New York
    Jessica Lax, Director of Competitions, Van Alen InstituteHeron Preston, Designer in Residence, NYC Department of SanitationClare Miflin, AIANYModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Monday, May 14  •  6:00pm

    Postmodernism, Past and Present

    A lively and provocative exploration of postmodern design, the most high-profile and controversial movement of the 20th century, and the people and companies that shaped its development. Accompanied by images of postmodern architecture, objects and interiors, the discussion will highlight its politically-motivated rise, its explosive debut in the international marketplace, its precipitous decline and its resurgence in the forefront of contemporary style trends. The panelists will also discuss the current challenge of preserving iconic examples of postmodern architecture that are now endangered.



    Judith Gura, Design Historian and Author of POSTMODERN DESIGN; Faculty, New York School of Interior DesignJohn Kriskiewicz, Assoc.AIA, Architectural Historian, Assoc. Adjunct Professor, Parsons School of DesignPaul Makovsky, Vice President of Design at Metropolis Magazine


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Tuesday, May 15  •  3:00pm

    Bringing the Virtual World to Life: VR to AR to 3D Printing

    Designers working with computers know the frustration of feeling like their work is trapped inside the screen, picturing it from behind a keyboard and trusting they're getting the information necessary to perfect a design. With the advent of VR, AR, and 3D printing, that information is available in dramatically new ways, and designers have a powerful new set of tools with which to create. This panel will address the many advantages of these technologies, and will explore the ways they can be used in combination.


    Virtual reality, augmented reality and 3D printing demonstrations will be included in this session.  Experience live as an object is created using VR, AR, and  3D printing.



    Nicholas Baker, Industrial DesignerTyler Woods, Lead Reporter, Technical.ly BrooklynFelipe Castaneda,
    Sr. Industrial Design Manager, MakerBot
    Dr. Jussi Kajala,
    Co-founder and CEO, 3DBear


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Tuesday, May 15  •  4:00pm

    Creating the Times Square Design Lab

    The Vision and Strategies Behind a New Program for Innovations in Public Space Furnishing

    The Times Square Alliance has launched its inaugural prototypes from a new program titled Times Square Design Lab. These commissioned designs for public space are designed by New York City designers Brad Ascalon, Joe Doucet, Louis Lim, DYAD by Doug Fanning, and Hive Public Space. The program is being managed by 6¢ Design, and introduces Times Square as a laboratory for new solutions to enhance public spaces and as a venue to present New York’s design talent and community. The designs in the inaugural 2018 Design Lab provide new solutions for seating, meeting, and signage, with the intent to provide customers and manufacturers among other public and private space managers nationally and internationally.



    Doug Fanning, Founder, DYAD by Douglas FanningKarrie Jacobs, Journalist, Author and EducatorJoe Doucet, Founding CEO, Joe Doucet x PartnersAlexandra Gonzalez, President and Co-founder, Hive Public SpaceTim Tompkins, President, Times Square AllianceBrad Ascalon, founder of Brad Ascalon Studio NYCLouis Lim, Principal, MakingworksVictoria Milne, Principal, 6¢ DesignModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:


  • Tuesday, May 15  •  5:00pm

    AIGA presents

    Design for Democracy: Building Community Power

    Join AIGA for a panel on what it takes to Build Community Power. We will discuss design-led community engagement strategies to mobilize citizens in a deeper understanding of their place and role in communities. Analyze the case study of work in progress, a collaboration between AIGA New York and Community VOTE, the civic anchor of Nonprofit VOTE. This project is funded by the NEA.



    Laetitia Wolff, Director of Strategic Initiatives, AIGAJames Hill, Director of Communications, Nonprofit VOTEDavid Frisco, VP, AIGANY; Adjunct Professor, Pratt InstituteRich Hollant, Co-Chair, AIGA Design for Democracy, AIGA Connecticut; Principal, CO:LABLouisa Hackett, Director, Community VotesModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:


    View Design for Democracy: Building Community Power Gallery Selections

    Be there or be Square!

    Join us for a 10-minute public viewing on the NASDAQ Tower screen in Times Square Tuesday, May 15th

    4:20pm – 4:30pm - sharp!

    4 Times Square, at the south east corner of West 43rd Street and Broadway


  • Tuesday, May 15  •  6:30pm - 8:00pm

    W New York - Times Square

    1567 Broadway

    W New York - Times Square presents

    What She Said

    W New York - Times Square hosts What She Said: Women in Design & Architecture, an hour-long discussion among female luminaries in the fields of design and architecture.


    The What She Said Series happening at W Hotels throughout the world mixes national marquee events with locally known women to inspire and motivate the next generation of female travelers.



    Parker Bowie Larson, Architectural DigestKellie Sirna, Founder and Principal, Studio 11 DesignRhoda Kennedy,
    AIA, LEED AP, Principal, Deborah Berke Partners
    Alexis Landes, Managing Principal, SCAPENancy Thiel, Founder and Principal, Thiel Architecture + DesignModerator:


    Reservation is required:


  • Wednesday, May 16  •  4:00pm

    Connecting Food Systems, Rural to Urban

    There are alternatives to unequal and unjust food distribution produced, among other things, by industrial agriculture, which entails long distance shipping, corporate control mechanisms, chemical preservatives, et al. Our growing desire for accountable food systems is behind the need to assess the abundance of farmland in close proximity to small, often impoverished, towns and rural communities in every region of the US and around the world.


    Find out how food justice, food production, and food infrastructure connect directly to design. Chefs, designers, architects, biochemists, and farmers are part of this movement.  How are they doing it New London, Connecticut, Lindsborg, Kansas, and Poughkeepsie, New York?


    One-on-one conversation between:

    Caitlin Taylor, RA, MASS Group ArchitectsSusan Szenasy, Director of Design Innovation, Metropolis Magazine


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Wednesday, May 16  •  5:00pm

    Living Legends of Design

    Hear from New York's legendary interior designers as they share their greatest hits and funniest moments working on New York's most elite projects.



    Carl D'Aquino, D’Aquino MonacoWendy Goodman, Design Editor, New York MagazineClodagh, Clodagh DesignJamie Drake, Partner, Drake/AndersonModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Wednesday, May 16  •  6:00pm

    WELLness - Beyond Well

    Along the same line of humanism is the Wellness movement in design, integrating all our senses into our interiors. Many interior designers love the WELL rating system, because it deals with complex human needs and addresses the seven requirements - including circadian light, clean air and water, and organic food.


    We will explore how WELLness embraces human needs, as well as those of the client, and discuss the urgency of a new client understanding and collaboration.  WELLness requires  leaders with vision to develop policies that support healthy behavior and good design.


    Speakers:                                                   Moderator:

    Susan Szenasy, Director Design Innovation, Metropolis MagazineRachel Gutter, Chief Product Officer, International WELL Building InstituteRick Cook,
    Co-founder, Cookfox Architects


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:


  • Thursday, May 17  •  3:00pm

    Once on This Island:
    Designing a Hit Broadway Show

    Nominated for eight 2018 Tony® Awards including Best Musical Revival, Once on This Island tells the universal tale of Ti Moune (2018 Tony Award® nominee Hailey Kilgore), a fearless peasant girl in search of her place in the world, and ready to risk it all for love. Guided by the mighty island gods (played by Tony Award® winner Lea Salonga, Glee’s Alex Newell, American Idol’s Tamyra Gray, and Cats’ Quentin Early Darrington), Ti Moune sets out on a remarkable journey to reunite with the man who has captured her heart.


    Join Tony nominees Michael Arden (Director), Dane Laffrey (Set Design) and Clint Ramos (Costume Design) for a discussion on how a script is brought to life, a story visually enhanced on stage, choreography enveloped and supported, moods and emotions evoked seamlessly leading from one scene to the next. Explore the art, craft, mechanics and technology behind the scenes.



    Peggy Eisenhauer, Lighting Designer, Once on This IslandSara Holdren, Theater Critic, New York MagazineDane Laffrey, Set Designer, Once on This IslandClint Ramos, Costume Designer, Once on This IslandModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Thursday, May 17  •  4:00pm

    From Nets to Net Positive: Tackling Plastic Pollution in Design and in Life

    Scientific Reports published a new study last month suggesting that the Great Pacific Garbage patch is "up to 16 times bigger than previous estimates." In fact, according to some sources, the patch is double the size of Texas, and three times as large as France. The primary source of waste in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and beyond is, of course, plastic. Another study recently highlighted that as of 2015, approximately 6300 million metric tons of plastic waste have been generated, and that only 9% of plastic ever produced has been recycled. Luckily, businesses and organizations are beginning to recognize the damage we're causing to our natural environment and are developing solutions to minimize the amount of plastics entering our waste stream, our landfills and ultimately, our oceans.


    In this conversation, Emma Riley of Lonely Whale and Jane Abernethy of Humanscale will tackle the effects of plastic pollution and what we can do about it as designers, manufacturers and individuals. They will discuss the circular economy and new initiatives to reduce plastic pollution including the Next Wave Initiative, Lonely Whale's Strawless Ocean campaign, and Humanscale's work with Bureo to turn plastic fishing nets into task chairs. As the Director of Strategic Partnerships at Lonely Whale and the Sustainability Officer at Humanscale, a company long dedicated to achieving a net-positive environmental impact, Riley and Abernethy share unique insights and perspectives that can benefit everyone in design and manufacturing, as well as concerned citizens, and ultimately our planet.


    Speakers:                                                   Moderator:

    Julie Lasky,  Design Writer and EditorJane Abernethy, Sustainability Officer, HumanscaleEmma Riley, Director of Strategic Partnerships, Lonely Whale


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:


  • Thursday, May 17  •  5:00pm

    Brooklyn Navy Yard – The Future of Urban Manufacturing

    Due to the resurgence of the 300-acre Brooklyn Navy Yard, manufacturing employment in New York City is set to more than double in the next five years. This talk will focus on the Brooklyn Navy Yard as an example of good urban planning and design, fostering growth in Urban America’s manufacturing sector.



    Jonathan Marvel,
    FAIA, Founding Principal, Marvel Architects
    David Levitt, Real Estate Alert, BloombergDavid Ehrenberg, President and CEO, Brooklyn Navy YardDavid Belt, Executive Director and Founder, Macro SeaModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required:

  • Thursday, May 17  •  6:00pm

    Pratt Institute and Pratt School of Design presents

    Women of Influence in the Business of Design

    This event continues Pratt’s ongoing series that examines the accomplishments of women who are leading change and driving innovation in various industries. Previously, this cycle of high-profile panel discussions has considered the fashion industry with Women of Influence in the Business of Style, the art world with Women of Influence in the Business of Art, and the film industry with Women of Influence in the Business of Film. We are extending the series with Pratt Presents Women of Influence in the Business of Design.



    Frances Bronet, President, Pratt InstituteSusan Szenasy, Director of Design Innovation, MetropolisDebbie Millman, Designer, Educator, Brand Strategist, and Host, Design MattersSybil Yurman, Co-founder and Chief Brand Officer, David YurmanModerator:


    Design Talks are open and free to all, yet a reservation is required: