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Onur Yuce Gun, Ph.D.
The forthcoming lecture at San Francisco Design Week 2023, titled “The in-between is the best place to be at,” promises to offer an insightful exploration of the future of design from a human-centered digital computation perspective. This event is sponsored by New Balance.
Aligned with the event’s theme, ‘Plot Twist,’ this lecture will emphasize the importance of embracing change and the unexpected, rather than clinging to stability and trends, as a fundamental aspect of design thinking and existence.
Just as the city of San Francisco thrives on the twists and turns that drive innovation and progress, so too does computational design. Similarly, “plot twists” that have disrupted industries and economies will be explored as crucial moments that have enriched Onur’s unique design career trajectory. Whether planned or unplanned, these changes will be presented as opportunities to spark creativity and shape the future.
This lecture will uniquely portray Computational Design by drawing on experiences and accomplished projects, ranging from half-a-mile tall skyscrapers to limited production 3D-printed shoes. It will weave a narrative of how these elements intertwine with the human experience and the concept of getting lost.
The discussion will span a variety of topics, including complete value chains, human-centered innovative thinking, hobbyist teaching, servant leadership, ontology, and references to Dante’s Divine Comedy. The lecture aims to provide a fresh perspective on navigating the “plot twists” of our rapidly evolving world, by being persistent on residing in the in-between, and stimulate engaging conversations on this captivating topic.
Onur Yüce Gün is a seasoned computational design leader, researcher, and instructor. Trained as an architect, Onur holds a Masters in Design and Computation, and a Ph.D. in Computation with a minor in Media Arts and Sciences earned at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Recognized by TEDx, and Time Magazine’s best inventions lists, Onur’s work has been internationally published, exhibited, and awarded. His papers won awards at eCAADe and CAADRIA. His work has been exhibited at the Center for Architecture AIA New York Chapter, SIGGRAPH, Centre Pompidou in Paris, and the Tokyo Gallery A4. His computational architecture work got published in Routledge’s seminal book, Elements of Parametric Design.
Onur has been building and leading computational design teams across industries and academia. He instituted the Computational Geometry Group at Kohn Pedersen Fox, NY, in 2006. In 2009, he co-developed the curriculum and co-directed İstanbul Bilgi University’s undergraduate program in architecture. In 2016, he joined New Balance Athletics to build the internal Computational Design Team. In 2022, he consulted Samsung Research America to help the tech giant build their first ever Computational Design Department. Onur taught at MIT, RISD, and Adolfo Ibáñez University in Chile.
Onur is the Director of Computational Design at New Balance, where he develops end-to-end computational design workflows and futuristic concepts. Onur played a crucial role in the R&D process of Triplecell, New Balance’s 3D printing technology, and designed the 3D-printed forefoot component of the limited-edition Fuel Cell Echo Triple that was published in Popular Science in 2019. Today, Onur leads the New Balance Computational Design Team with value-driven innovational thinking while attending to the broad history of computational thinking and making, from Turing to AI diffusion models.
Since 1906, New Balance has empowered people through sport and craftsmanship to create positive change in communities around the world. We innovate fearlessly, guided by our core values and driven by the belief that conventions were meant to be challenged.
New Balance Computational Design Group develops creative, intelligent, and meaningful sportswear concepts, and delivers unprecedented products that disrupt the market through value-centered computational design innovation.