We will host something different, this time.
NEXT is the topic.
It is going to be a conversation in the cloud for those who register and confirm their spot. Details when you ask for them.
The number of people who died today, in Ho Chi Minh City.
Who were they? What stories did they leave? Who is grieving tonight in the city? It is a long distance from the end, here, for the covid fourth wave, looks like, emotionally.
Discussion links to follow on email for members of S P A C E. Personal stories from the pandemic to be shared in 2 weeks’ time. Gathering them now. Listening, feeling..
Cooking!, at times. But also just making sandwiches, sometimes, too. Lockdown continues in its strictest form for another month; which is a long time, but I guess, so is a year and a half and that’s how long I’ve been in Vietnam just kind of waiting for borders to open and meantime looking for fun things to make, and ideally, co-create. I love a good party. Anyway, the food is fun to try and so is learning about how to say things. A different language can open your eyes to an entirely fascinating new way of thinking.
Some new folks and I got together on a call. We talked on a call this week about ‘acculturation’ versus ‘assimilation’ or what I further went on to read is ‘integration’ and then there’s also ‘marginalization.’ All these big multisyllabic words to describe the feelings one traverses, in different personalities of whom we are as we approach those borders that delineate us from ‘something I don’t know yet’, and how we cope with the ‘acculturation stress’. Which is the updated word, it appears, for ‘culture shock.’
Which, after all, is kind of amazing and hard, yes, especially with this Delta thing and lots of time to read the internet while waiting for HCMC to reopen, for one, then VN, then.. the world. Or something. For today, ‘sandwich.’ Miếng săng uých. I like this.
a project of
Atelier S P A C E // Ho Chi Minh City
The food scene in Vietnam is its very own unique thing and well worth spending time with, while DK is here. (And… while I am here, I should also learn how to cook, something that I just skipped over most of my life.)… [deleted]… it’s also quite beautiful to discover new things. Which all began, in September 2020, with this:
So yeah. Since getting the chance to see how quickly one can prepare a gorgeous meal, and being the kind of person who loves collages, and so, yeah, why not just try it. Collaging with… ingredients. So, since lockdown started in June of this year, I got more serious about it. And I decided to try my hand at this new adventure, in.. what is this thing!? Cooking.
Getting better. I think. All this is possible in New Cuizines thanks to some new crowdfunding support. Yes. That’s right. Thank you. So I have been reading more and more about… food. Background, you know. Research. For fun, I found some pictures of the things that I see every day and wanted to put them together in a mini-collage below. I found them online, and the artists’ names are below each image, shared with permission. I got them from a website that lets you share images for free, because it was way too hard to ask people who take pictures here to work with me on anything; it’s just too much effort to get in touch and ask people to meet you and talk about things, share, that sort of craic… [deleted]… With whomever shows up. So, I came online again and searched and sorted. Curating things, now, more and more. Lately I found:
‘The most vibrant and economically wealthy city in Việt Nam has offered financial aid* to help people whose incomes have been slashed due to the city’s 14-day lockdown.
‘When HCM City coughs, the whole country feels the cold. Its daily number of positive cases this week has been consistently above 1,000 and topped 2,000 on Wednesday.
‘The Ministry of Health continues to send medical teams with doctors and other health personnel to help HCM City fight the pandemic. More than 7,000 medical students have been added to the health force to start work in the city’s quarantine camps and hospitals.’
“When a horse is sick, the whole stable feels the pain, goes a popular saying,” writes Nguyễn Mỹ Hà.
*Friends tell us how hard it is to do the paperwork to actually get to any package that might come out, and some people are waiting and waiting for previous similar things to come to fruit, is the word on the street, to our knowledge. Meantime the need for cash is real. So here’s what’s up…. Social sustainability-shaped things, up next, in S P A C E. This is where DK has been taking shelter since the outbreak of the virus, and thanks to help from friends and neighbors, gotten by with… being in a foreign land, unplannedly. Now, this. Support DK’s own effort to create small, paid writing and design commissions. These would be for people whom we have gotten to know and whose work we value and even cherish, at Atelier S P A C E Ho Chi Minh City. See ‘Book of Feelings’ at our recently updated crowdfunding page. Here is a link.
Help me make it *happen*.
Atelier S P A C E HCMC Autumn 2020
an online exhibition
in S P A C E
Monday 5 July 2021
to request an invitation
join mailing list
Images: by Văn Trần, September & October 2020, Saigon
Mục tiêu của bất sự phát triển của bản thân cũng nên tập trung vào tăng trường bền vững dài hạn chứ không phải lợi ích ngắn hạn. Trong kinh doanh chẳng hạn, ‘hack tăng trưởng’ tập trung vào tối ưu hóa tài nguyên cũng như tạo ra khách hàng tiềm năng. Nếu hoạt động kinh doanh của bạn là một cái xô và khách hàng tiềm năng là nước, bạn sẽ không muốn lãng phí tài nguyên bằng cách đổ nước vào một cái xô bị rò rỉ.
Phương pháp? Atelier S P A C E:)) Đây là những gì chúng ta làm…
‘Giải quyết vấn đề, khả năng đối phó với sự phức tạp và giao tiếp. Nhiều chuyên gia trẻ thiếu các kỹ năng mềm và cứng cần thiết để quản lý và thực hiện các dự án một cách độc lập. Tại Atelier S P A C E, mục tiêu của chúng tôi là giúp thu hẹp khoảng cách kỹ năng đó.’
Xem thêm: chuffed.org/project/spacethezine
Our own ‘N’ is going to be part of International Jazz Day…
Here’s the official link.
See our listing under ‘Vietnam’…
16NA jazzy, co-creative evening of poetry and music. Meantime, our playlist will feature contemporary jazz artists from around the world, in a special mixtape curated by DK.
LET’S TALK ABOUT learning. How we discover, find, and make new connections. Ideas, shapes of thinking and the input that comes from places that might not be the ‘usual’ ones. No more boring meetings: What are the containers that make great conversations *happen*? Conversations that lead to better collaboration and better work? Those are important. Let’s not waste time. Let’s make things better, together.
Better and more enjoyable: that’s the key.
How do we design the S P A C E that lets fresh thinking flow? Continue reading “3 April | S P A C E | HCMC, ‘Miniparty’”
Cooooool. That was so fun.
I was taken on a journey that transported me out of Vietnam, but also, outside of all the usual boxes that you can find even when you leave the nation-border box. (HT Jiddu Krishnamurthi) For example, the strict thinking that keeps us from trying new things. All the feelings that I have been having here in Vietnam on my own, for a year, unable to articulate because of English I got to completely open up and share. That was amazing, and I got to hear, moreover, something in exchange. These exchanges are what I enjoy most about making S P A C E. They—the exchanges—are, after all, the whole point of it. And fun. ‘If it’s not fun’, as Boss says, ‘then there’s no point doing it.’ Thanks to conversations with MB this year, though I am coming out of the cave. It’s nice outside. Sunny.
Một ngày nắng đẹp.
Cheers, ladies and gentlemen.
To the journeys, then
PS A week or so from now, I’ll host another popup, maybe. By invitation for those already in my circle, but for those who aren’t, and are reading this blog post, and want to know more, here is a signup page: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/atelier-s-p-a-c-e-meetup-tickets-146866045295
Photo: Van Tran, Atelier S P A C E HCMC, Autumn 2020. Atelier S P A C E is supported by crowdfunding, in-kind donations, and Design Kompany client gigs.
Special thanks to Hanoi-trained and Ho Chi Minh City-based product and food photographer Thắng Chu, of Uncle Photography, for the series of images that he took for us of our magazine, S P A C E. A few of them are below and also at our crowdfunding page.
What is the point of S P A C E? Design and discovery. Putting together the highlights of what we uncover, by simply inserting ourselves into the world, asking questions, and not giving up on the idea that you learn more when you learn more together. Here’s us, doing the jam, still. Discovering, and co-creating, as we go. Together, in S P A C E. Even when it’s a pandemic. Even when we’re not sure who’s around. Who’s interested. Who’s not blocking themselves from becoming better. Who’s okay with looking at something in a new way. In a country that doesn’t like to do that, it’s been one hell of a trick. Still, we keep doing our work, we keep making S P A C E. Boring or depressed foreigners aside, we’re looking for the people who are looking for the new. That’s it. That’s the whole thing. It always was, I just didn’t know it.
More about this project is at our newly updated crowdfunding page.
Here’s a link.
Watch this space:)
PS Reflecting on the 2020 year of change and stuff, I realize it’s time to say a thank-you. Special thanks to those who have supported S P A C E since the start. A lot of you donated anonymously to the campaign so I won’t call you out here. But you know who you are. I appreciate it. The best is yet to come, and I feel amazingly lucky to have the support from so many talented, smart and creative people in my sphere both near, and far. We are making it happen. Sharing the journey, one designful moment at a time. But you already knew I could deliver on that, and I appreciate it that you kept showing up for me, even when the showing up (for you, for me) was not easy. Thanking you. I read on a website somewhere that courage isn’t having the strength to go on. Courage is going on, even when you don’t have the strength…S P A C E was born in the waning hours of 2018. Today, it’s starting to start… naturally, a baby takes time to learn how to find its footing. #readyset #outofthecave2021
Tomorrow is February.
I arrived in Vietnam on 27 February 2020.
Tomorrow is 1 February 2021.
So. Many. Feelings.
Here’s a link to the issue where I’m writing them.
In recent days we have been asked to share more and more about our past work in branding, and brand identity design. Concept design is our specialty, but it is an abstract thing to talk about: ‘concepting.’
A lot. Of things. But, at the center, the one thing I do well is help people discover, through conversations, who it is that they really are.
That is what I do.
I say this and then people might ask further questions. Most of the time, most of the people will ask the kinds of boring questions like:
‘But how do you make money?’
‘Where are you from?’
‘But really, where are you from?’
Yeesh. [For a primer on why that’s a bad idea, check out Taiye Selasi‘s TED talk, ‘Don’t ask me where I’m from, ask me where I’m local’]
When I see these questions coming out of people’s mouths, I basically just end the conversations and go back to typing my blogs.
More broad-minded people might put it like this:
‘What is your specialty?’
Fair enough. And I will be direct. I don’t have to be wishy-washy about it. I know what I do. So I say it. I say, ‘Concepting.’ I really really don’t have to ‘sell’ this. It’s kind of like, if you don’t see the value, right away, then you’re probably not a fit, anyway, because… [deleted]… but honestly, I don’t think you will.
What’s interesting is inside you: go find that. Find it out for yourself. (HT Jiddu Krishnamurthi). In short, if someone is smart and has been in business more than five years, then they will know the value of working with someone who knows what they are doing instead of investing money and time into the relationship only to wind up with something underwhelming, at the end.
My mentor, JM, taught me this. (Thank you for hiring DK more than once, J. I appreciate that. As, I know and understand, you do, too. We have a good awareness of the qualities of each other. Cool.) Speaking of mentors, there was another one who had also been a client, too. He helped me see that you don’t want to promise something cool and then turn out crappy results. You want to deliver. He said: I like to underpromise, and overdeliver. (HT DE. I still remember when you told me that.)
So yeah. The first filter for me in assessing if I want to share more about DK is, ‘Is this person serious about their work?’ If they are keen, and curious, genuine, and probably number one for me is if they are sincere, then sure. I’ll share the link. I always used to send it to prospective customers, because, even if they don’t want to work with me or I don’t want to work with them, perhaps they will learn something on their own.
The link is this one, a Slideshare called ‘The Brand Gap.’ I have referred more than 100 people to this link because I think they might find out something. Sometimes helping people figure things out for themselves is the best way to be of use in doing what I said I do, at the start of this post. Namely, I help people figure out who it is they really are.
A big gig.
Disclosure: No one is paying me to share this link.
Photo: DK / Atelier S P A C E Mito, 2019
From 2017-2019, I went to Finland, Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Slovakia. To discover stories. In the world. By simply showing up to find out things, on my own. There was no one sponsoring this, aside from a handful of people who supported our crowdunding campaign for it. Not religious, no agenda. Just: seeking. Why? To find out the new things. This is how we expand windows. And create opportunities for ourselves. Why did you embark on such an ambitious project, DK? What did you learn? Who did you meet and what did they tell you? I’ll tell you. Check out some of these links, and see if you’re interested in what we are up to, around here, and if you find yourself saying, ‘Yes this is of interest to me,’ then join us on Sunday evening. Learn DK’s techniques and meet new people, at this one-time only conversation party for a maximum of 4 guests.
Ages 21+. Advance bookings only.