Hello World

A new look and feel for Fab Lab Barcelona

  • Sep 4, 2020
  • 4 MIN READ

We’re always pushing the boundaries of what a Fab Lab can be and what it can do for the world. Fab Lab Barcelona has an updated identity as a research and design centre for the exploration of emergent futures. 

For over ten years, we’ve been pushing the boundaries of what a Fab Lab can be and what it can do for the world. Led by Tomas Diez and a dedicated team, we’ve built a brand that is synonymous with citizen-centred technology, digital fabrication, productive citizens and emergent futures. 18 months ago, our team embarked on an adventure to organise our vision and now, we’re launching a new identity and website that can deliver this message to the world.

This article aims to re-introduce Fab Lab Barcelona through the new structure that we now prefer to use to explain the work we do. We like this structure because it celebrates everyone in the Lab – their enormous efforts, undeniable creativity and the pioneering work they do. It’s these people that have made Fab Lab Barcelona a benchmark for rethinking the way we live, work and play in cities.

Welcome to the new and improved face of Fab Lab Barcelona, the Lab you know and love has grown up!

1. The Brand

The new face of Fab Lab Barcelona has been crafted as a dynamic brand identity that represents the experimental approach of the Lab, that means, always looking for new challenges and adapting to new realities, with the help of technology, design and people, which represent the three interactive blocks of the logo. The new branding, podcast, content, video series and graphics you see on across this website have been the labour of love for many months of our very own Fab Lab Barcelona communications team – the Happiness Unit.

2. Our Areas of Expertise

In our new identity, we’ve narrowed down the Fab Lab Barcelona strategic areas of expertise. The themes we are interested in which drive our research: Civic Ecology, Distributed Design, Emergent Futures, Future Learning, Materials and Textiles, Productive Cities and Sense Making. The work we do in the Lab can be attributed to one of these lines of enquiry. Some are historic, like Materials and Textiles, that includes projects like Fab Textiles and educational programs like Fabricademy. Some projects fit inside of two research areas, like Fab City – a project inside of Productive Cities and Emergent Futures.

3. Our Activities

Through our experiences, we’ve realised we’re pretty good at delivering three main kinds of activities: Research, Education and Services. Within these activities, we’ve delivered many different things: from coordinating European Research projects to developing hands-on learning programs to delivering the Made Again Challenge in collaboration with IKEA and SPACE10 in our neighbourhood of Poblenou.

→ Research

Collaborations we make to enquire, explore and experiment with like-minded organisations in the pursuit of knowledge across the areas of expertise. Through research, we develop methods that support our approach towards action-research and foster a dynamic, authentic, humane and sustainable culture of innovation. Our research is both private and publicly funded.

→ Education

We create contemporary learning environments and experiences to support growth, learning, innovation and opportunity for solving future challenges today. We engage our Future Learning expertise to deliver short-term learning experiences, Academies and a Master. The Academies are delivered inside the distributed education framework of Acadameny, which includes Fab Academy and Fabricademy programs both of which we offer and co-coordinate from Fab Lab Barcelona.

→ Services

Services help us translate our research to wider audiences, and outreach beyond the Fab Lab and research worlds. We collaborate with many various institutions with the aim to improve the life of people. This includes curatorial services, tailor-made programs and sometimes even products.

4. Content

The busy life of the Lab means we clock-up a lot of knowledge that we want to share with you. We have designed the new website to get our ideas out there through a range of different formats – there’s something for everyone. The blog, Future Talks video series, Future Talks Live IGTV series, our newsletter and our newest knowledge-sharing platform, a podcast dedicated to conversations with friends of the Lab. 

Meet the Future Talks Podcast

And Future Talks on video

5. Knowledge

We are always dedicated to sharing our knowledge in an open source way where possible. In developing the new website, we’ve made two dedicated online spaces where you can get your hands on our knowledge, alongside the content formats above. From today, you can access the Fab Lab Barcelona Market, where we will share free and paid products and tools that we develop at the Lab. From early next year, you will be able to access our open source project knowledge in one place, like a digital library. We’re very pleased to collate all our documentation in one place – stay tuned!

6. People

Our people are everything! Nothing really new here. We just want to give a big shout-out to the Fab Lab Barcelona family old and new for their help and support to get this new identity, website and knowledge-sharing strategy off the ground. We hope that this platform will continue to perfect and synthesise the depth of work our 32-person-strong-team do and that it lays the foundation for the future of Fab Lab Barcelona as we go to work rethinking how we live, work and play in cities.

We hope you enjoy our new web, and this article helps to guide you through the new face of Fab Lab Barcelona. We’re going to continue to push the boundaries of what a Fab Lab can be and what it can do for the world, we hope you can join us. In the uncertainty of the past months, we believe our new identity can offer a powerful message of new, emergent futures yet to come with citizens at the forefront. Stay tuned ⚡⚡

About the author

Kate Armstrong

Distributed Design Strategic Advisor

A Master Arts and Society (University Utrecht) and Bachelor of Design (UNSW), Kate has vast experience in cultural programming, design and open tech fields in Australia and Europe. She has been the communication and dissemination manager for various European research projects at Fab Lab Barcelona concerned with circular economy, open design innovation ecosystems and future cultural heritage. She managed the Distributed Design Platform, a Creative Europe Platform co-funded by the European Commission and currently serves as its strategic advisor. Kate sits on the Management Board of the Fab City Foundation, leading the global initiative’s Outreach. She is Faculty of the Master in Design for Emergent Futures at IAAC/ELISAVA, Faculty of the Master in Distributed Design and Innovation.

Sep 4, 2020