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SDS on tour at the Birmingham Design Festival

Thursday 6 June 2019
Jamaican street signs, reinventing neighbourhoods and an interactive wayfinding/waylosing workshopComposite image showing signage, and graffiti relevant to SDS on tour in 'Brum' event

About this event

For June’s SDS talk we’re going on tour, heading up to Birmingham to the Birmingham Design Festival. We’re giving members an opportunity to enjoy a full day of design related activities to inspire and challenge. The SDS itinerary will take in two free Birmingham Design Festival talks and a unique Sign Design Society workshop, all hosted by Birmingham City University:

2pm-3pmBig tings a gwaan down di street: hand painted street signs, murals and graffiti of Jamaica (Tracey Thorne, Ghost Streets CIC). An exploration of the visual language of Jamaican streets, expressed through hand-painted signs, street murals and graffiti, collected from five areas of the island and presented using photography, original signage and video stories.

3pm-4pmFinding new truths for old places. Reinvention of remarkable neighbourhoods (Joy Nazzari and Patrick Eley, dn&co). A discussion that explores how designers are uniquely positioned to influence the way in which cities, towns and neighbourhoods develop and build a positive vision of place.

4pm-6pmGet lost > Have fun: SDS on tour workshop (limited to 30 attendees). An interactive exploration of innovative ideas for wayfinding/ waylosing (Colette Jeffrey, BCU, and Wes Sedman, Define). This session will kick off with a brief sharing of ideas on how designers plan new large-scale developments and guide people. Then attendees will be encouraged to work in groups to explore new design ideas for wayfinding, using Birmingham’s Eastside City Park for inspiration. This fun and informative collaborative workshop will be followed by an after session visit to the park. The workshop will conclude in The Woodman Pub with a discussion on new insights and ideas over a drink.

About our speakers

Patrick Eley is the creative director of dn&co and co-founder of Place Press. With nearly 20 years in the design industry, he has wide-ranging experience from static print to wayfinding and immersive environmental work. Place Press is the perfect platform from which he and co-founder Joy Nazzari can explore how people think about place and space. From how they navigate, to what stories they tell and the experiences they take away.

Colette Jeffrey is Associate Professor in Wayfinding at Birmingham City University (BCU) and a member of the SDS Steering Group. She is currently completing her PhD, researching how people get lost inside buildings and what they do when they get spatially disoriented. Before joining BCU in 2009, Colette spent 15 years working as a wayfinding consultant, inclusive design director and information designer. She researched and co-wrote the NHS official guidance on wayfinding in hospitals (1999). She was involved in developing map and sign solutions for legible city projects in Brighton and Leeds; designed wayfinding systems for over 60 complex environments, including Tower Bridge, Wembley Arena and shopping centres in Dublin and Dubai.

Joy Nazarri has a natural curiosity for places and place identity. She has collaborated with architects, businesses, developers and government to create meaningful destinations, from retail and restaurants to entire neighbourhoods. She is the founder of dn&co brand consultancy and Place Press, an independent publishing house. The dn&co team are behind the reinvention of some of London’s most remarkable areas, including Broadgate and Ilford Town. Her recently published book Know Your Place talks about the need to go beyond placemaking to create places with purpose.

Wes Sedman is a qualified urban designer and chartered town planner, with extensive experience in urban regeneration, public realm and interchange design. He is Associate Director at Birmingham-based Define Planning & Design Ltd. Their mission is to pursue the art of place shaping through the core disciplines of landscape architecture, town planning and urban design. Working with both public and private sector clients and multi-disciplinary teams, Wes has broad knowledge of masterplanning, townscape assessments, site layouts and the preparation of design & access (DAS) statements.

Tracey  Thorne. With over 25 years experience working with local communities, Tracey founded Ghost Streets CIC in 2018 to deliver collaborative arts and culture projects. She also carries out independent projects to document and share stories that explore the ephemeral landscape found in streets and urban spaces across the world. Focussing on hand-painted advertising signs, street art and graffiti. Tracey’s original research has produced the largest photographic survey of hand-painted street signs (ghost signs) in Birmingham. Through her work Tracey fuses together the act of walking the street to discover alternative ways to navigate and think about places, exploring themes connected with ‘freedom and space’.

Register for this event

Book Now to join us for this unique SDS on tour @Birmingham Design Festival 2019 programme of events. Hear from speakers on a diverse range of design and wayfinding related topics; participate in a fun and informative workshop exploring new ideas for finding your way or getting lost; and enjoy networking with peers.

We recommend that you reserve your place to attend the 2pm and 3pm BDF curated talks (both free) via the Festival’s website event page.

To participate in the 4pm workshop you must book via the SDS Administrator as usual. To register please email .

NB Tickets for the workshop are limited to 30, so book soon to avoid disappointment. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis.


The Birmingham City University, City Centre Campus, Curzon Building (C402), Cardigan Street, Birmingham, B4 7BD


06 Jun 2019 14:00

Price : Free

Already a member? See details above for booking details.

Please email to reserve your place.