Faulty Material

This workshop explores the design potential of faults, mistakes and irregularities. The resulting product of the workshop will be a joint publication, produced by the students with the risograph technique.

Today, designers work with perfect tools, perfect technologies and perfect materials. Every white sheet of paper and cheap pencil are of regularity and pristine perfection that was inconceivable just two hundred years ago. Large retina displays have more than 20 Million pixels. If one malfunction, it is a valid reason to return the device. In our high-tech world, faults and defects have turned into rare curiosities, at least when comes to industrially produced products.

Curiously, as humans, we seem to be drawn to irregular materials and faults. The Japanese aesthetic concept of Wabi-Sabi where faults and imperfections are deliberately integrated into the design is an example of this. Where perfection is inevitably repetitive because it complies with unchanging standards, every fault is a unique deviation, a beautiful starting point for something new.

In this three day workshop, we will explore the potential of mistakes, faults and errors as material for design practice. After a short input lecture, the participants will go on a hunt for imperfections on day one. They will collect and analyse the different types of faulty material and present their findings to each other. On days two and three, we will develop a joint publication created from the faulty material and printed with risograph technique.

Bernd Grether studied graphic design at the Hochschule für Gestaltung Schwäbisch Gmünd. His work focuses on editorial design and visual identities. From 2015 to 2021 he taught in the Information Design class of Prof. David Skopec at University of Arts Berlin.


Sam Kim is a graphic designer who is specialized in the design and art direction of visual identities. He works with a focus on strong visual language and systematic implementation. His projects are often developed in close collaboration with the client, from the initial concept to the final realization. He studied at the UdK in the class of Visual Systems from 2011–2016. Currently, he is working as a freelance designer based in Berlin and Hamburg.


Run period:
18.07.2022 – 20.07.2022
Course time:
10.00 am – 5.00 pm
Application Deadline:

Course fee:
EUR 460

Min. number of participants:
Max. number of participants:

Registration deadline has passed. Limited places still available.