Sustainable Food & Farming Iconathon


March 2, 2014
10:30am – 3:30pm


MFA Interaction Design
136 West 21 Street
Third Floor
New York, NY 10011

Agriculture has changed dramatically in the past few decades. Multinational corporations dominate an industry once made up primarily of small farmers, with vertical integration threatening those who remain. The majority of the food we eat is produced by a handful of companies, using technologies designed to increase efficiency, but often at significant cost to public and environmental health. Practices like industrial scale meat production and increased reliance on chemicals in crop production have drawn criticism from environmentalists and animal welfare advocates, as well as from consumers. More and more people recognize the importance of ecological farming practices and are joining the sustainable agriculture movement.

The Noun Project has teamed up with GRACE Communications Foundation and Mother Jones to host an Iconathon for Sustainable Food and Farming.  We're pleased to announce that this public design workshop will take place on Sunday, March 2 in our studio in New York.

We're bringing together sustainable food experts from TEDx Manhattan, GRACE, Mother Jones, and other advocates who will work side-by-side with the highly talented designers from School of Visual Art's MFA Interaction Design, SVA|NYC program.  The goal of this workshop is to create a set of internationally recognizable icons that will help increase communication around food issues.

Tom Philpott, the James Beard award-nominated food & ag reporter for Mother Jones, will kick off our discussion on sustainable food & farming, followed by the director of GRACE's food program Chris Hunt.  Edward Boatman, co-founder of The Noun Project, will present on semiotics and best icon design practices.  Participants will work in groups with designers & food experts, so everyone will be able to participate and contribute – no art skills necessary!

The icons created during this event will be released into the public domain for use in ag journalism, local/sustainable food marketing, online sustainable food directories and mobile applications.

Iconathons are organized to engage the general public in the design process and participants include both designers and non-designers. No design or art skills are necessary, all are welcome to participate. The Iconathon is free to attend but tickets are limited, please RSVP.

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