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Historic First Graduation

by SDI Class of 2017

Starting in 2011, we finally have achieved our first big goal: graduating our first Advanced Class of Strategic Design & Innovation (SDI) at the DeTao-Studio Esslinger within SIVA (Shanghai Institute of Visual Arts). During the last 6 years, we have built a state-of-the-art studio incl. a World Class model shop with German machinery and tools – thanks to the generous support by the DeTao Group. After trying in vain to establish a Master program

for design due to lack of qualified graduate students by our standards, we started our undergraduate program in 2013, and in close collaboration with SIVA, we created a program which is on par with top design schools in Europe, United States and Japan.


Back in February, our Seniors choose themselves the topic of their graduation project and within less than 3 months they had to develop innovative design solutions. Coherently with

our broad view on design we let them work on a wide range of issues: from social tasks like children’s health and personal safety, to sports equipment, autonomous mobility, robotics,

and entertainment. The graduation finals were honored by the presence of Gong Xueping, founder of SIVA and John Xia, CEO of DeTao Group. Our jury included two teachers and

three outside jurors:

Prof. Ping Ye, SIVA, Shanghai

Lidan Liu, Design affairs, Shanghai

Lei Ten, Ark Design, Shanghai

Rain Huan, The Makers, Shanghai

Prof. Dr. Hartmut Esslinger, DeTao/SIVA Shanghai



刘力丹,Design Affairs合伙人

滕磊,Ark Design 设计总监兼合伙人



Two of our students earned extra honors with their projects we are showing here:

“Biky”, a safe child bicycle by Wang Jiaqi and “Xiavari”;



a digital violin by Xia Jing.


I also want to thank our teaching team: Cicy Chen, Chinese Design Leader, William Volcoff, Studio Manager & Foreign Design Leader, Everina Lu, Office Manager, Carlo Chen, Master Modelmaker, Tian Kun Kun, Designer & Modelmaker – and especially Benjamin Cselley, who joined us for the event. Beny supported me for 5 years, and managed the entire build-up of the studio. Also: big thanks to DeTao Group and SIVA – incl. their teachers - for providing the means for our ambitious program.


在此,我还要感谢我的教学团队:Cicy,中方设计经理;William Volcoff:工作室负责人兼外籍设计经理;Everina:工作室经理;Carlos: 模型师;Tian Kun Kun:设计师兼模型师 – 特别鸣谢Benjamin Cselley前来参与我们的毕业生答辩活动。Benjamin在前五年的时间里协助我一起建立并管理整间工作室。与此同时,还要感谢德稻集团及上海视觉艺术学院,包括所有老师们的鼎力协助。谢谢大家为我们这一本科项目所提供的诸多帮助。

Class of 2017: keep going far, create for a better world and be a leader!


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