Interview with Raya Stefanova

Interview by with Raya Stefanova – artistic director of ONE DESIGN WEEK festival of design and visual culture.

What is new this year in ONE DESIGN WEEK?

For the eighth edition of the festival of contemporary design and visual culture ONE DESIGN WEEK 2016 (10 to 19 June 2016, Plovdiv) we deliberately chose the ambiguous title “- Can I help you?”. The title is subject to interpretation, and aims to create a dialogue with the audience. Regardless of age, social status, or profession, everyone can understand it in their own way and the answer would always be correct. The choice of the theme of the festival is directly related to one of our main goals – to reach the widest possible audience. “- Can I help you?” Is both a question and an open invitation for conversation between designers and the people they serve – all of us.

What are the aims of the festival and how you measure success?

The main objectives of ONE DESIGN WEEK always have been to exist as an adequate platform to support the Bulgarian design scene, promoting best practices and supporting collaborations and partnerships between different disciplines of local and international organizations. Through the events organized we want to show and validate design as a medium for social change. ONE DESIGN WEEK aims to become the intersection between the public and authorities from fields such as science, literature, music, dance, theater, journalism and politics, presenting different perspectives on the participating projects in the context of the festival. Through dialogue we will define what is modern design, exploring its multiple dimensions and the impact it has on our lives. The feedback from the participants and the audience are very important to measure the results of the festival as either a success or not.

What is the place of Eco-theme in your work as a designer? What are the messages you send with it to your audience?

It is difficult to limit my work to one topic. In fact, my work as a designer is not to fall into or focus on a specific category or topic, namely it is the opposite – try to observe and analyze the whole. The sense in what I do can often be reduced to simple messages that carry a consciousness and responsibility.

What do wish for the artists in Bulgaria?

I wish for them to strive to change the environment, and simultaneously not to take for granted.