December Open Listening Sessions

Dear LA Design Community,

We Love Your Voice . . .

Come join us in our December Open Listening Session! This is the third in a series of community focused conversations that give space to critical, urgent topics focused on design community, community culture, and what a future AIGA LA can be. We are highly motivated by the stories and ideas shared in the sessions so far and the authentic feeling of community that is being experienced, together. Stories of otherness, microaggressions, stress and precarity, the challenges of mentorship, the complexity of designer identity . . . ideas for shared learning, advocacy, generosity. There is so much to talk about, and we are processing how we can turn these dialogues into future action, and how we center community in that work. This is happening as we build our community-inclusive DEI Task Force, and newly formed goals will be shared in a community Town Hall in January 2021.

These conversations are intended to be an open forum for you to vocalize ideas and realness in a safe space, with a particular focus on those who have been underrepresented or marginalized. They are part of a bigger picture in which our chapter is actively challenging it’s own history with the intent of re-emerging as a more relevant, accessible and experimental organization. We want to know, what is urgent for you at this time? Your voice can activate how we shape our chapter for and with you... and together we can build a future design culture that reflects our diverse, future-forward city while upending hierarchies of race, class, gender, and culture.

This session is led by community leader Silas Munro, a partner of Polymode bi-coastal design studio, and Associate Professor of Communication Arts at the Otis College of Art and Design. Please join us for AIGA LA’s second listening session this Wednesday the 2nd at 6:30 PM.

Lets build this inclusive design community together!



Saata Bangura
Saata Bangura is an award-winning, multidisciplinary creative whose work centers around high-impact visual representation. As a freelance art director, design director, graphic designer and fine artist, her career spans numerous organizations in the tech, marketing, entertainment and nonprofit industries. Some of the past brands Saata has worked on include Disney, Star Wars: Force for Change and Major League Baseball. Her designs can be seen at The 3% Conference and in AdWeek publications. Operating from the intersection of creativity, mindfulness and curiosity, she has a track record of creating change and making impact. Saata is a proud first-generation American with roots in Sierra Leone, West Africa, and she often writes about diversity and inclusivity. Born and bred in the Bay Area, she now calls Los Angeles home.

Silas Munro
Silas Munro is a partner of Polymode, a bi-coastal design studio, an Associate Professor of Communication Arts at the Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, and Advisor, Founding Faculty, and Chair Emeritus at Vermont College of Fine Arts. In the past year he emerged as one of the most exciting practitioners of community-engaged design and as an influential scholar known for his contributions to W. E. B. Du Bois’s Data Portraits: Visualizing Black America published by Princeton Architectural Press in late 2018. The project has been featured in articles in Smithsonian Magazine, The New Yorker, and Black Perspectives (African American Intellectual History Society).

Munro’s scholarly research addresses the relationship between designers’ personal identities, formal systems and strategies they utilize, and how both interact with the communities they serve. In workshops and lectures he addresses post-colonial relationships between design and marginalized communities and offers practical ways for educators and practitioners to decolonize the way design is taught and to create inclusive new frameworks. His design work and writing has been published in books, exhibitions, and websites in Germany, Japan, Korea, the US, and the UK including Chronicle Books, IDEA magazine, Eye, and Slanted magazine.

He earned a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA from California Institute of the Arts. He has been a critic and lecturer at leading programs including Yale School of Art, Maryland Institute College of Art, NC State, RISD, and CalArts.

Members | Non-Members: Free
Once you are registered, an email will be sent at 5:30 PM on Wednesday, December 2, with a link to join the online event.

6:30 PM — Welcome
6:40 PM — Introductions with Conversation Lead
6:45 PM — Open Conversation
7:45 PM — Closing Remarks

Twitter: @AIGALosAngeles | Instagram: @AIGALosAngeles

A Few Things to Note About This Session:

  • This session is a safe place to converse and will not be recorded
  • This session will follow AIGA’s Code of Conduct
  • Accommodations for captioning and/or sign language interpreter can be provided. Please let us know at time of registration.
  • This event is free but if you would like to make a donation to our scholarship fund, please go to:

Creating open, inclusive, diverse spaces for conversation and connection
Improving the community with tools for career growth and life balance

Please consider joining AIGA to support our programs and initiatives.

When & Where
Wed, Dec 2, 2020 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM PST