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Researcher's Profile

Setsu ITO

RCAST Fellow


Link of outside open a new window STUDIO ITO DESIGN


1987.03       The University of Tsukuba, Bachelor of School of Art and Design
1989.03       The University of Tsukuba, Master of School of Art and Design 
1989.04       Designer, Studio Alchimia / Studio Alessandro Mendini (Milan)
1989.11       Designer, Studio Angelo Mangiarotti (Milan)
1995.07       Founder, STUDIO ITO DESIGN / Setsu & Shinobu ITO Design Studio (Milan)
1999.01       Adjunct Professor, IED Milano
2000.05       Special Lecture, Tama Art University
2001.02       Adjunct Professor, DOMUS ACADEMY
2006.06       Adjunct Professor, Politecnico di Milano, School of Design
2006.12       Adjunct Lecture, University of Tsukuba, School of Art & Design
2007.07       Adjunct Lecture, University of Tsukuba, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences
2009.06       Adjunct Professor, IUAV the University of Venice
2017.06       Adjunct Professor, Politecnico di Milano, School of Design
2017.01       Adjunct Professor, Raffles Milano Istituto
2018.01       Visiting Researcher, RCAST, The University of Tokyo (UTokyo)
2019.01       Fellow, RCAST, UTokyo

Research Interests

Since the Renaissance in Italy and Europe, Design has been regarded as an attempt to solve problems that are necessary for society and life and to give form to all things we need. It has been thought that it is a creative act by all-rounders like Brunelleschi, Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci. The history of Design in Europe can be said to be the history of Design driven development and innovation. In Japan, on the other hand, the history of Design is thought to be the act of giving Designs to differentiate products, which came out of the industrialization after World War II. In fact, despite the beautiful temple architectures and crafts history that has been done long before that. During the same period of Leonardo Da Vinci, in Japan there was a master who created new meaning and value of "thing" like a Senno Rikyu.
In our laboratory, operating in Europe and Japan, we develop various product Designs ranging from cross-cutting advanced technology products, traditional technology products, industrial products and handicraft products, product packaging, and also space environment, architecture and interior Designs, collaborating together with international companies and institutes. We are comprehensively designing a wide range of Designs, from large spaces to palm scale things, in various sizes, typologies, materials and different manufacturing methods.
We are not limited to designing the form of thing itself, but also designing including relationships and stories that can occur there. We design relationships between people and people, people and things, people and society and things that are constantly changing. Through experience in development in a wide range of fields and interaction with experts in various fields, we seek to discover new perspectives on individual things and matters, give new meaning, and solve new problems. When we design, it does not make much sense to be aware of the target category, typology. During designing a chair, we will not be conscious to much of the existing chair, but will design with an eye on the creation of new meaning and value that the chair will produce.
After 500 years from the renaissance, in this new age which the harmony of human being, the earth, and space environment is required, we will practice research and development to create balanced things led by Design.


Design of things and matters, Problem-solving History, Value Creation, Product Semantics, Design of relationship

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