Academy of Art University School of Industrial Design Students Look to the Past to Design for a Greener Future
School of Industrial Design students generate "green" ideas utilizing the Academy of Art
University’s rare resource: The Classic Car Museum. As the only art and design school with its very
own car collection, Academy of Art University gives its students an edge on designing for a cleaner
and greener future.
Raymond Chan’s design from Spring Show 2007
The 55 mint-condition classic cars are a link to the past of great American craftsmanship.
Though these automobiles were anything but "green," they inspire students to solve problems of fuel
efficiency through environmentally friendly design. For example, the 1929 Auburn Speedster, one of
the collection’s most exquisite and rare cars, gets about 12 miles to the gallon. That’s lower than
With increased concerns about global warming, the demand for fuel-efficient vehicles and
greener designs is rapidly increasing. Academy of Art University students are on the frontline of
the future of auto design with the School of Industrial Design’s curriculum, which incorporates
elements of environmentally friendly design and social responsibility.
Paul Kim’s design from Spring Show 2007
"Students are infusing green designs into their car concepts to project the
lifestyle of a person 10, 20 and 30 years from now. They are definitely thinking beyond just
technologies such as hybrids and fuel cells, it is about sustainability in their automotive design
concepts," said Tom Matano, Director, School of Industrial Design.
Roman Mistiuk’s design from Spring Show 2007
In the Transportation Design 4 class, students undertake projects such as designing efficient
vehicles for city car share programs. One student designed a car that doubles as a street sweeper –
a project that not only considers the future, but also the present environment.
With projects like these under their belts, Academy graduates are ahead of the "curb."
Learning from the classic workmanship of the past undoubtedly inspires designs for a better