MOME Mobility Design Lab opened by the chief design officer of Mercedes
MOME Mobility Design Lab, one of the region’s most cutting-edge vehicle design workshops, has opened in Budapest at the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design, enabling students to work with the most innovative technologies. The studio, dedicated to the university’s reinvented Vehicle Design Programme, was inaugurated by Chief Design Officer of Mercedes-Benz Gorden Wagener together with President of the MOME Foundation Gergely Böszörményi-Nagy on 1 July.
The opening ceremony marked the 20th anniversary of the collaboration between the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design and Mercedes-Benz, celebrated by a series of grand events by the university. The just-opened Mobility Design Lab will be engaged in researching the future of mobility, with students designing drones, ships, motorbikes, and other means of transportation in addition to cars, as well as the related user experience.
The opening of the new workshop represents a major milestone in training and improving the competitiveness of prospective vehicle designers of the region. University students can now create visualisations of their designs using state-of-the-art high-tech tools in addition to conventional clay modelling. Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies and graphic tablets offer students an opportunity to provide a cutting-edge visual presentation of their concepts and developments, just like at the design department of a leading automotive brand.
The most outstanding designs of the MOME Vehicle Design Programme from the past five years were also on display, including Máté Treffler’s rescue Unimog created for the global non-governmental organisation Doctors Without Borders, as well as luxury models by Botond Levente Kiss and Bálint Elek.
As President of the MOME Foundation Gergely Böszörményi-Nagy said at the opening, “The partnership between MOME and Mercedes-Benz is about the future of Hungary. It is our ambition to incorporate creativity, in particular design and product design, as a domestic added value into the production capabilities and dynamically growing capacities of the Hungarian economy. With our new tools at the ready, everything is set for this to be accomplished.”
“20 years ago I was greeted by a completely different scene at MOME, with a vehicle design workshop that looked more like a DIY garage. There has been a massive improvement since then. I am tremendously proud of our work together. Student projects also reflect the refurbishment of the campus. Professional-level concept designs were produced, with impressive standards of digital design. This is important, because the future will be digital”, underlined Chief Design Officer of Mercedes-Benz Gorden Wagener in his speech, who has personally provided feedback during his visit on the student designs presented.
Over the past two decades of collaboration with Mercedes-Benz, the university’s vehicle design programme has risen to the forefront globally. As a result of the partnership, several MOME students were able to start their careers at Mercedes or were hired for the designer teams of major automobile manufacturers such as Volvo, BMW Audi, or KIA.
Such a unique technological facility can contribute to advancing the standards of education not only at our university but in the entire region. Mastery of the new visual language at the workshop will be instrumental in helping our students secure internships at leading automotive companies and factories, making it a substantial investment into the future.
Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer for Mercedes-Benz graduated as an industrial product designer in 1993. He studied under Stefan Lengyel, head of the product design department of Essen University at the time and guest professor at MOME, who forged the link between Mercedes and our university. Ever since, MOME students and lecturers have been actively involved in the design programmes of the automotive brand. Wagener took over management of the product design department of Mercedes in 2008, and since then has completely reinvented the luxury brand’s forms and design philosophy to also incorporate Bauhaus motifs.
MOME is changing its operational model
Since August 2020, the 142-year-old Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design (MOME), has been operating in a foundation model. As part of the model change, MOME has developed a long-term strategy, reinvented its research and development activity, launched the digitalisation of its internal processes, and proceeded to modernise training. In addition to providing a traditionally high level art and design education, the university will introduce entrepreneurial training for all of its BA students, and launch its first English-language MAs from 2022. In 2021, MOME's budget nearly quadrupled, and the foundation also decided to grant the most substantial pay rise to teachers in the history of Hungarian higher education.