Jason Kelly Johnson

A City of Intelligent Machines

The work of Future Cities Lab forecasts a coming world in which intelligent machines become key building blocks of the next city. The lab is at the forefront of exploring what Johnson calls "robotic ecologies" - places where biology and machine intelligence merge, evolve and co-create. The work of the lab explores how these revolutions will profoundly transform how we live, work, communicate and play in the future. As a part of the lab's core research they interrogate and dissect the cities we live in now, and then re-imagine and recast them into radically new and innovative forms. During Jason Kelly Johnson's talk, he will discuss the current work of the lab and situate it within larger cultural, social and ecological trends.

Jason Kelly Johnson is a founding design partner of Future Cities Lab, an experimental design and research office based in San Francisco, California. Since 2009 Jason has authored a range of award-winning projects exploring the intersections of design with advanced fabrication technologies, robotics, responsive building systems and public space. Future Cities Lab is at the forefront of exploring how advanced technologies, social media and the internet of things will profoundly affect how we live, work, communicate and play in the future. Their approach to design and making, which has been described as “high performance craft”, is also deeply experiential, interactive and materially rich. Future Cities Lab is an interdisciplinary studio employing an adventurous team of designers, architects, technologists, digital craftspeople, urban ecologists and more. Recent projects include "LIGHTSWARM" - an interactive LED facade recently installed at the YBCA in San Francisco, and the "DATAGROVE" - a social media whispering wall for Zero1 in San Jose. Jason also teaches and leads the Digital Craft Lab at the CCA.

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