A group of avid creatives and I were interested in exploring the relationship between nature, culture, and food artisanship in the Provençal region of France. We researched products that are traditional to the region: goat cheese, candied fruits, wine, and olive oil. Initially, we gathered background stories on the internet, in books, and in academic publications. From this foundational research, we developed a plan of action for collecting data in the field. We conducted interviews with local artisans, made observations, learned about their lives and both the traditional and novel methods they use. Applying a distinct design research process, we collected, analyzed and mapped data in order to better understand the relationship between nature, culture, and artisanship.

This study led to our deep appreciation of the people of Provence, their land, their practices, and their culinary specialties, created with passion. Conducting research abroad in a foreign language helped us gain a unique perspective about empathy and the design process as a whole that we will carry with us to future projects. This experience will enable us to offer our clients a deeper level of awareness, a way to gain in-depth insights about their challenges, and a platform from which to create innovative solutions.

Strategy group: Nathan Beck, Abbie Francisco, Mark Hemphill, Katie Murray, Monica Seggos, Raquel Serebrenik, Isaac Toonkel, Marcelo Torres, Nicole Walsh.

Contact me for the full project.