What is it? What's in it?

The first version of the Future of Fixing was called Brave Fixed World. It was one of two main highlights of the Łódź Design Festival in Poland in 2014. The exhibition had a live makerspace, a library and a small cinema, as well as an exhibition which showcased projects by designers and makers trying to fix their world. A programme of talks and workshops ran throughout, culminating in a one day seminar. This combination of making, reading and showing is the core principle of the British Council Maker Library Network . We adapted this formula to the theme of fixing and repair and added some components which you can see below.

Upwards of 45,000 people engaged inside the 10 days that the festival was live. A year later after a number of conversations about touring and archiving we felt it would be limited, wasteful and frankly against the ethos of the project if it was not made into an open resource. With the co-operation of Łódź Design Festival and the British Council we're creating an open invitation for anyone who is interested - makerspaces, libraries, museums or design studios - to make use of the materials that were created and to adapt, create and share their own versions.

2014-FNO112-BraveFixedWorld-LDF-004-©Łòdź Design Festival-4240 x 2384.jpg

Our version of the Future of Fixing had a number of inter-relating components:

  1. Exhibition
  2. Library of books and materials
  3. Small cinema
  4. Programmed activities
  5. Specially commissioned materials

Your version might take all of these, or might pick and choose between them according to your particular context. All of them will need to be adapted or hacked to suit your context, in particular the exhibition component which you will need to curate and populate yourselves (we share our exhibit list as example but we do not supply exhibits - even if we could (and we can't) there will be more relevant/up to date/local exhibits which will be better for you to use.)

Each of the components is described below. Templates, checklists and other materials we used are shared on the Tools and materials page.
To see pictures from the first exhibition - check our Picasa Album below. (If you'd like to use some of these images, please contact us for rights information, some of them are not ours to gift). You can also check what Core77 saidabout the exhibition at the time.
Brave Fixed World - Lodz Design Festival 2014

1. Exhibition

The role of the exhibition was to inform and inspire visitors - showing what's out there and trying to make sense of it. The projects were chosen because they interrogated technical, philosophical and aesthetic approaches and attitudes to repair. From our research we identified 5 main strategies which we split into clusters:
  • Fixing Things
"Broken and ready for new adventures." This section showed examples of objects that have gone to lead a second life - whether improved or refurbished, or as parts within a newly designed object.

  • Fixing Materials
"Back to basics." An object, however broken, is never useless because it can be dismantled into raw materials. Someone's waste is another person's source material. Even pollution can be broken down into something usable if you understand its material properties.

  • Fixing Process
"How to fix." The process is as creative and inspiring as the result. This section payed tribute to ingenious makers who hack their way through problems and inspire others do the same.

  • Fixing Systems
"From reaction to action." The projects in this section demonstrate that careful manufacture can lead to considerate consumption. The entire life of the object is planned from the outset, from mining raw materials to disassembly and reuse, preempting waste and abusive production methods.

  • Fixing Attitudes
"Inform and Inspire" Our wall of manifestos relayed the voices stemming out of the maker movement and industry, calling for better informed, ethically-aware producers and consumers.

We showed projects by 25 exhibitors from 6 countries. You can see our exhibits list here or in Tools and Materials.

2. Library

The book collection and reading area included inspiration and reference books about making, fixing and fixers for guest-makers and visitors to enjoy.
The library combined recommendations from the Maker Library Network, from the festival organisers and from us at FROM-NOW-ON.

The Institute of Makingand the Royal Society of Arts Great Recovery collaborated with us to curate a large Materials Library which showcased the challenges and opportunities materials represent for makers and fixers.
The Institute of Making showed materials created with the specific goal to enable repair or, in extreme cases, to make it obsolete. The RSA Great Recovery showed materials and objects that either obstruct or enhance a sustainable circular economy.

3. Cinema

The dedicated cinema area showed a loop of films from our exhibitors, Fixperts films and other inspiring videos. The screen and sitting area doubled up as a talks area for guest speakers to give presentations and for social meet-ups.

4. Programmed activities

The makerspace was a versatile workshop area that sat at the heart of the exhibition. In Łódź, the programmed activities explored the relationship of craft and new technology in the context of repair. The resident makers from the FabLab RabbitForm were joined by local and international guest makers. Visitors were invited to bring their broken possessions and learn how to fix them, discovering traditional and innovative materials and techniques.

The exhibition was also supported by a one day seminar organised by FROM-NOW-ON and Łódź Design Festival and supported by the British Council. An international panel of speakers discussed current issues around fixing and reflected on what the future might hold.
The three panel discussions, chaired by Daniel Charny and Gian Luca Amadei were:
- Fixing and Making - Tomasz Ferenc, Heleen Klopper (Woolfiller), Ugo Vallauri (Restart)
- The Future of Fixing - Dr Catharine Rossi, Dries Verbruggen (Unfold), Rami Efal
- Making Connections - Nat Hunter, Heath Nash
See the full programme here.

5. Other commissions

A comic was specially commissioned to accompany the exhibition. Seven artists responded to the theme of the Future of Fixing, through both dystopian confrontation and utopian acceptance. It was distributed freely for the length of the exhibition.
The contributing artists were Koby Barhad, Rami Efal, Krzysztof Ostrowski, Ola Mirecka, Stuart Bannocks and Alexandra Lychagina.

Creative Commons License
The Future of Fixing by FROM-NOW-ON is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.