Biography

Ilona Gaynor (b. 1986) is an artist, writer and film-maker. She is also Director and Founder of research studio, The Department of No.

Her work continuously draws upon use of narrative, language structures, image and film. The work often takes form as complexly precise plots and schemes that predominantly focus on the interrelations between law, finance, crime and popular culture. Using design as a vehicle, the work aims to form compositions that are imaginary, yet realizable. The various outcomes presented, often take form as dense hypothetical plot constructions and reformed narrative schematics, that manoeuvre between artefact, artifice, cinematic, photographic and graphic representation.

Her work has been exhibited, published and screened internationally, she has also lectured and taught internationally; including institutions such as the Royal College of Art, Princeton University, The Architectural Association, University of Harvard, Oxford University and The Rhode Island School of Design. Ilona set up the Department of No in 2012 as a studio for research and consultancy thats focus lies directly in the constructs between the real and the imaginary; consulting three ways between law enforcement practices, art and film and entertainment.

Education

2009-2011
MA(RCA) in Design Interactions, Royal College of Art, London, UK.
*winner of The Sir Ridley Scott Award

2004-2007
BA(Hons) Moving Image Design, Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication, London, UK.
*graduated 1st class

2002-2003
City and Guilds, Black and White Photography and Chemistry, Stafford College, UK.

2014
Short-Course, Screen Writing, Industrial Scripts, London UK.

2014-2015
Private Investigation (PI) Training,
Detective Training Institute (DTI)
Los Angeles, USA.

Lectures, Talks and Conferences

2016

Lecture
Design as the 21st Century Hustle
Department of Design and Architecture
School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Chicago, USA

2015

Lecture
The Future of Money
Department of Industrial Design
Central St Martins
London, UK

Conference Speaker & Workshop
ACT Festival
ACT Center, Asia Culture Center (ACC)
Gwangju, South Korea

Speaker (Symposium)
Aerials,
The Alpine Review Magazine
Toronto, CA

Symposium, Sleep Science
BBC Radio 4 and The Wellcome Trust
London, UK

Symposium alongside:
Lucy Kimbell, Cameron Tonkinwise,
Duncan Fairfax and Thomas Thwaites
"We Have Never Been Speculative Enough"
Central St Martins
London, UK

Lecture
The Object Agency
Victoria and Albert Musum
Nesta Futures Day
London, UK

Artists Talk,
Department of Film and Television
Staffordshire University
Stafford, UK

Artists Talk,
School of Machine Making & Make Believe,
Belgrade, Serbia

Lecture and Symposium,
C.S.I Design, Crime Scenes and Suspect Objects.
Alongside Barry Curtis, Prof Roger Luckhurst,
Tim Edensor and Brian Dillon.
Critical and Historical Studies
Royal College of Art
London, UK

Lecture, 'Fables & Folly, Narrative Schematics',
University of Gothenburg (HDK)
Gothenburg, Sweden

Artists Talk,
FACT, Liverpool, UK

2014

Lecture and Debate Panelist, 'Welcome to the Apocalypse'
alongside Ken Hollings. Graphic Design Department,
Central St Martins
London, UK

Lecture, Masterstudio Design,
Academy of Art an Design FHNW
Basel, CH

Artist Talk, As They Are Observed
Design Museum
London, UK

Lecture, Design Products Department,
Royal College of Art
London, UK

Keynote, Image Culture Series, Museum of the Image,
Curated by Mieke Gerritzen and Angelique Spannicks
Breda, NL

Artists Talk, W12 Studios,
London, UK

Lecture, Designing Devience,
Royal College of Art
London, UK

Lecture, When Genre's Collide: No Country for Old Dudes,
Museum of Moving Image
New York, USA

Lecture, Drama Department, The Julliard School
New York, USA

Speaker, Resonate 2014, Belgrade New Media Festival,
Belgrade, Serbia

Artists Talk, Visual Communications Department
Royal College of Art,
London, UK

Lecture, Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science,
University College London (UCL),
London, UK

2013

Speaker, Design Fiction and Extreme Scenarios,
V2 Institute of Unstable Media,
Rotterdam, NL

Lecture, Industrial Design Department,
Rhode Island School of Design,
London, UK

Speaker, In conversation with Norman Klein,
Super Talks series, Tent,
London Design Festival,
Truman Brewery, UK

Speaker, Stackivism Unconference,
with Benedict Singleton
London, UK

Lecture, Forensics and Hollywood Conference,
Warner Brothers Studios,
Hollywood, Los Angeles, USA

Lecture, Emerge Talks Series,
Media Department of Research,
Bournemouth University, Dorset, UK

Risk Aesthetics,
The Kennedy School of international and Global Affairs,
Harvard University,
Boston, USA

Lecture, "Cinematic Effect, Situation Room",
Department of Architecture,
Columbia University,
New York, USA

Lecture, 'When Site Lost The Plot',
Fine Art Department,
Goldsmiths University,
London, UK

Lecture and Panelist, "Beyond Design Activism",
History of Design Dept,
Royal College of Art,
London, UK

Lecture, "A Police / Architectural Investigation",
AlterFutures,
Sense Worldwide,
London UK

Lecture, "Design in the Context of FX",
Stan Winston School of Special FX,
Los Angeles, USA

Lecture, "Financial Aesthetics", Film Department,
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA),
Los Angeles, USA

Project Presentation, Tomorrrow's Transactions Forum,
Future of Money and Financial Crime,
London, UK

Artist Talk, Umeåu Institute of Design,
Umeåu, Sweden

Artist Talk, Interactive Media,
Bournemouth University,
Dorset, UK

2012

Lecture, "Gothamite Economies,
Bruce Wayne on Screen" Museum of Moving Image,
New York, USA

Artists Talk, Design + Media,
Rhode Island School of Design,
Providence, USA

Lecture, "Art in the context of Design Thinking",
IDEO,
New York, USA

Keynote Speaker, Emergence Conference,
The Future of New Governments - and Economic Models,
Oxford University, Oxford, UK

Project Presentation, "Under Black Carpets",
MDP, Art Center College of Design,
Pasadena, USA

Pecha Kucha, "When 3 Worlds Collide",
MDP, Art Center College of Design,
Pasadena, USA

Lecture, "Blood Stained Carpets",
David Lynch Symposium,
Tate Modern,
London, UK

2011

Artists Talk, Department of Risk Science,
University of Michigan,
Anne Arbor, Michigan USA

Lecture, "Designing the Darker Sides",
Studio X, Department of Architecture,
Columbia University,
New York, USA

Artists Talk,
Alter Futures, Sense Worldwide,
London, UK

Do You Like Our Owl?, It's Artificial? Of course it is.',
Siggraph Conference,
Vancouver, Canada

Panel Speaker, 'Crossover scenarios, playing in
the fields of Big Society',
Demos,
London, UK

Lecture, Guest Critic
'Speculative Design, Seduction & Sales',
Hyper Island,
London UK

Hosted Workshop, 'Finance & Fiasco',
Public and Economic Policy,
London School of Economics,
London UK

2010

Speaker,'Speculative Design and it's Marcket place'
Proctor & Gamble,
New York, USA

Artists Talk,
IDEO New York Office,
New York USA

Keynote Speaker, Predictable Anomalies,
The Association of Future Markets Conference,
New York, USA

Guest Lecture,
IDEO London Office,
London UK

Artists Talk,
IDEO Shanghai Office,
Shanghai, China

Artist's Talk,
Nottingham Trent University,
Nottingham, UK

2009

Keynote Speaker, 4th Annual Click Conference,
Creative Review,
Soho Theatre, London, UK.

Exhibitions and Screenings

2017

Commission and Curatorial
Biennale Internationale Design Saint-Étienne
Saint-Étienne, France


2015

Issue No.09
The Aram Gallery
London, UK


2014

Disruption, Designers in Residence
curated by Pollyanna Clayton-Stamm
Design Museum,
London, UK

Solo Show
Forensic Ontologies and the Plot,
curated by Gabriella Arrigoni
FACT, Liverpool, UK

Oxford Futures Forum,
curated by Lucy Kimbell,
Said Business School,
University of Oxford, UK

Artefact Festival,
curated by Hicham Khalidi,
STUK,
Leuven, Belgium

2013

Solo Show, 'Paper Moon'
Desgn Fiction and Extreme Scenarios,
V2 Institute of Unstable Media,
curated by Michelle Kasprzak,
Rotterdam, NL

Requiem for a Bank,
curated by Fabian Saavedra-Lara,
HMKV,
Dortmund, Germany

Image, Building, Object: Exploring
Architecture and Design on Film,
Black Cinema House,
Chicago, USA

(Workshop) with Cher Potter
Close Closer,
Lisbon Architecture Triennale,
Curated by Liam Young,
Lisbon, Portugal

MDP Residency Exhibition,
Wind Tunnel Gallery,
Art Center College of Design,
Pasadena, California

Escape Ecologies,
Fine Art Department,
Goldsmiths University,
London, UK

Kakfa Cinema,
Museum of Moving Image,
New York City, USA

Screening,
The Viper Room,
Los Angeles, USA

2012

Artefacts from Earth,
Palais De Tokyo,
Paris, France

Screening,
Goldman Sachs Headquarters,
New York, USA

Screening,
The Global Economic Summit,
New York, USA

Emerging Imagineers,
Siggraph Conference,
Vancouver, Canada

2011

"Glitch Fiction",
Paris Design Week,
Cité de la Mode et du Design,
Paris, France

"SHOW",
Upper Gulbenkian Gallery,
Royal College of Art,
London, UK

2010

Biennale Internationale du Design,
Demain c'est Aujourd'hui,
curated by Claire Fayolle,
St Ettiene,
France

Anti Design Festival,
Curated by Neville Brody,
London, UK

2007

Screening at NY Sci-Fi Festival,
Museum of Moving Image,
New York, USA

Super Contemporary
The Design Museum
, London, UK

2006

Light,
Friday Night Late Series,
Victoria and Albert Museum,
London, UK.

Teaching

2016

External Thesis Advisor
Department of Industrial Design
Rhode Island School of Design
Rhode Island, USA

2015

Workshop "Learning from Mr Orange, Mr White
and Nice Guy Eddie"

ACT Festival
ACT Center, Asia Culture Center (ACC)
Gwangju, South Korea

Guest Critic,
BA Architecture: Spaces and Objects
Central St Martins
London, UK

2014


Faculty, Digtal + Media,
Rhode Island School of Design (RISD),
Providence, USA

3 day Workshop, Masterstudio Design,
Academy of Art an Design FHNW
Basel, CH

Visiting Tutor and Critic
Murder As The Object of Design, 3 Week Project
Visual Communications MA
Royal College of Art
London, UK

Guest Critic and Tutor,
Unit 6 (Unknown Fields),
Architecture Association, London,
UK

Guest Critic,
Unit 23 (Fabricating the Real),
Bartlett School of Architecture,
London, UK


2013

Guest Critic, Unit 14 (Interface Architecture),
Bartlett School of Architecture,
London, UK

Visiting Professor, Digtal + Media,
Rhode Island School of Design,
Providence, USA

Jury / Examiner, MDP Lab track,
Art Center College of Design,
Pasadena, USA

Pratictioner in Residence, Interactive Media Dept,
Bournemouth University,
Dorset UK

Workshop Facilitator, 'Prototyping the Future',
Umeå institute of Design, Umeå, Sweden

Faculty, Digtal + Media,
Rhode Island School of Design (RISD),
Providence, USA

2012

Visiting Professor and Critic, Department of Architecture,
Princeton University,
New Jersy, USA

Workshop Facilitator, "Proof of Life After Death",
Media Department,
Rhode Island School of Design (RISD),
Providence, USA.

Nov 2010

Workshop, 'Finance & Fiasco',
Public and Economic Policy,
London School of Economics,
London, UK.

Selected Press and Publications

Books and Publications

Disegno Magazine no.10
Disegno Magazine no.9 (Cover and feature)
Twelve Tomorrows, MIT Technology Review (Contributing author)
When Site Lost The Plot, Urbanomic Press
Interview with Shona Kitchen, Disruption, Design Museum
Disegno Magazine, No 6.
MADE UP: Design's Fictions, Edited by Tim Durfee
Architectural Design Magazine (AD), High Definition: Zero Tolerance, Edited by Bob Sheil
WIRED Magazine UK, Sep Issue 2013
Architectural Design Magazine (AD), Scarcity Issue, Edited by Jon Goodburn
Biennale Internationale Design Saint Etienne Catalogue / p48
Creative Review
Campaign magazine

Online Publications

Objection!!!, WeMakeMoneyNotArt
Fast Company, Objection!!!
Dezeen
Disegno Daily, Objection!!!
Disegno Daily, Reality Isn't Working
Icon Magazine, Iconeye
It's Nice That, Designers In Residence, Design Museum
Design Week
Dazed and Confuzed Magazine, Economic Art
Uncrate, Under Black Carpets
Disegno Daily, Problems with Design Fiction
Another Something and Company, Heists
Hyper Allergic, Under Black Carpts
Lodown Magazine
The Minneapolis Egotis, Bank Robbery Woman
Core77, Ilona Gaynor wants to know
We Make Money Not Art, Under Black Carpets
It's Nice That, Under Black Carpets
Design Boom
Venue Project
BLDGBLOG, Do Black Swans Dream of Electric Sheep
Boing Boing
Beyond The Beyond, Bruce Sterling, WIRED
Beautifiul Decay, Designing A Robbery
Creative Applications
WIRED USA, Artist Designs Heist
Beyond the Beyond, Bruce Sterlng, WIRED
We Make Money Not Art, Everything Ends in Chaos
Blueprint Magazine, Top 10 Graduates of 2011
Disegno Daily, Under Black Carpets
FRAME Magazine

TV

Jay Leno, CNBC
NNN Nippon News

Radio

T-R-E-M-O-R-S, Arts and Architecture Magazine
99% Invisible, Interview, Breaking the Bank
Art Uncovered, Breakthru Radio
AIL (Artists In Laboratories), Resonance 104.4 FM

Newspaper

The Financial Times
USA Today
The Los Angeles Times
The New York Times
The Philadelphia Herald

Selected Texts

2016

Feature Essay,
Critical Geometries of the Non-Human
Disegno No.11

Feature Text,
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Disegno No.10

2015

Short Story,
Twelve Tomorrows 2016 Edition
edited by Bruce Sterling,
MIT Technology Review

2014

Essay, "What We Want Is In That Room" with B.Singleton,
High Definition and Zero Tolerance Issue,
edited by Bob Sheil,
Architectural Design Magazine (AD),
Wiley Publications

2012

Essay, "The Sub, Sub, Sub Genre",
Silverscreen Journal p44-45,
UCLA Publications 2011

Book, Est in 1703, Everything Ends in Chaos,
Self Published Works (Collated Research Documentation)
A book of curated texts and research taken from several
external resources.

2007

Thesis, 7 Men Died in 72 Seconds and Poor Informatics,
Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication,
RCD&C Library

Awards and Commissions

Solo Show, Biennale Internationale Design Saint-Étienne, 2017

Wellcome Trust Arts Award, 2015

Residence Commission , Disegno Magazine, Issue No.9

Designers in Residence, Design Museum London

Innovation in Extreme Scenarios,
V2 institute for Unstable Media, Rotterdam

Requiem for a Bank, (HMKV)
Der Hartware MedienKunstVerein, Dortmund

Future of Money Award, Tomorrrow’s Transactions,
the annual Consult Hyperion Forum

Sir Ridley Scott Award, RSA Films, London

Summer Research Resident,
Arts Center College of Design, Los Angeles

D&AD Student Award

PROMAX Award

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