Gabriele Oropallo

Research Fellow, Design History
Phone +4722855331
Mobile phone +4748189164
Room GM 338
Visiting address Georg Morgenstiernes hus Blindernveien 31 0313 Oslo
Postal address PB 1020 Blindern 0315 Oslo

Gabriele Oropallo is a Research Fellow in Design History at the University of Oslo. His research examines the role of visions in the making of sustainable design, and the entanglement between design and nature. His previous work looked at themes such as political commitment in design, and the urban dimension of visual communication. 

Before joining the IFIKK department at the University of Oslo, he was a Marie Curie Fellow at University College London, where he also taught design history, and organized a series of public seminars on the impact of ideology and social commitment on design practice.

In 2013, he participated to the São Paulo Architecture Biennial as part of the Arquipélagos Urbanos collective. In 2014, a project he developed with Joanna van der Zanden and Cynthia Hathaway, "Repair Society," was presented at the Istanbul Design Biennial

The other institutions with which he has been associated as visiting researcher or lecturer include the Zürich University of the Arts (ZHdK), and the University of California, Berkeley. He chaired the 2016 iteration of the programme in design and architecture of the Domaine de Boisbuchet dedicated to "Origin and Translation." 

His recent publications include chapters for edited books such as Crafting Economies: Contemporary Cultural Economies of the Handmade (2017), Iconic Designs: 50 Stories about 50 Objects (Bloomsbury, 2014), Made in Italy: Rethinking a Century of Italian Design (Bloomsbury, 2013), Writing Design: Words and Objects (Berg, 2011), and catalogue essays for exhibitions held at the Triennale Design Museum, Milan, and SESC, São Paulo.


KUN4500 – Design in Nature (Spring 2016)

KUN2201/4201 – Design Culture: Ten Things (Fall 2015)

PhD Course – Design History in Practice: Theory, Method, and Materials (Spring 2015)

PhD Project

"Making or Unmaking the Environment: The Role of Envisioning in the History of Sustainable Design" (pdf)

Tags: Design, Architecture, Sustainability, Climate Change, Politics, Environmentalism, Development


“The Elevation of Repair: Between Pragmatic Utopia and Broken World Thinking”, in Jilly Traganou (ed.) Design and Dissent (London: Routledge, forthcoming). 

“Designing Guilt in the Age of Sustainability”, in Guy Julier and Anders V. Munch (eds.) Design Culture: Object and Approach (London: Bloomsbury Academic, forthcoming). 

“People Have the Power: The Implications of Labour-Intensive Making in the History of the Appropriate Technology Movement”, in Susan Luckman and Nicola J. Thomas (eds.) Crafting Economies: Contemporary Cultural Economies of the Handmade (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2017).

"How Long Should Things Last?", Form 270, March-April 2017. 

22 entries on Italian and Dutch designers, in Clive Edwards (ed.) Encyclopaedia of Design, 3 Vols. (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2015).

Review of the documentary Design is One, by Kathy Brew and Roberto Guerra. AIS Design: Storia e Ricerche 4 (2014).

“Wind-Up Radio,” in Grace Lees-Maffei (ed.) Iconic Designs: 50 Stories about 50 Things (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2014).

“Design for the Real Lifespan: Comparing Two Twentieth-Century Strategies for Social and Economic Sustainability through Life-Cycle Planning,” in Helena Barbosa and Anna Calvera (eds.) Tradition, Transition, Trajectories: major or minor influences? (São Paulo: Blucher, 2014).

“This Way to the Exit: The Re-Writing of the City through Graphic Design (1964-1989),” in Kjetil Fallan and Grace Lees-Maffei (eds.) Made in Italy: Rethinking a Century of Italian Design (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2013).

“The Secret Language of Objects: Geraldo De Barros’s Industrial Design,” in Fabiana de Barros (ed.) Isso: Geraldo de Barros (São Paulo: SESC, 2013).

“Digital Personal Fabrication: Social Actions, Ephemeral Objects,” in Priscila Lena Farias, Anna Calvera, Marcos da Costa Braga, Zuleica Schincariol (eds.) Design Frontiers: Territories, Concepts, Technologies (São Paulo: Blucher, 2012).

“The Form of an Example,” in Ester Manitto (ed.) A Lesson with AG Fronzoni: From Teaching Design to Designing Lifestyle (Genoa: plug_in, 2012; London: Unit Editions, forthcoming).

“The Urban Dimension of Graphic Design in Late Modernism,” in Giorgio Camuffo, Mario Piazza, and Carlo Vinti (eds.) Triennale Design Museum 5: Grafica Italiana (Mantua: Corraini, 2012).

“After the Dust Has Settled Over the War, Architecture Turns Into Evidence: In Conversation with Eyal Weizman,” in Donatella Bernardi and Noémie Etienne (eds.) Standing on the Beach with a Gun in My Hand: Eternal Tour Ramallah-Jerusalem (Geneva: Labor et Fides, 2011).

“Design as Language Without Words: AG Fronzoni,” in Grace Lees-Maffei (ed.) Writing Design: Words and Objects (Oxford: Berg, 2011).

Architettura dell’Occupazione. Spazio politico e controllo territoriale in Palestina e Israele (Milan: Bruno Mondadori, 2009), translation of Eyal Weizman, Hollow Land: Israel’s Architecture of Occupation (London: Verso, 2007).

Published May 23, 2014 2:18 PM - Last modified Feb. 24, 2017 12:08 PM