Visual Design Lab

The Visual Design Lab is an interdisciplinary research lab that explores the intersection of visual communication with accessibility, cognition, philosophy, policy, and culture. The lab fosters collaboration between the Arts and Humanities, other NYUAD departments, and local and international partners. By means of its agile interventions on campus, cutting-edge research, and publications, the Visual Design Lab seeks to establish itself as a recognized leader in the region for scholarship on the impact of design practice.

Design research and practice are multidisciplinary fields that draw from various disciplines, such as the arts, cognitive sciences, history, sociology, geography, physics, and medical sciences. The Visual Design Lab creates a dynamic discourse with practical applications by converging these diverse perspectives. It serves as a unique hub for educational research on visual design, cognitive artifacts, and the impact of design on policy and decision-making. Located at NYU Abu Dhabi, the lab provides a hands-on experimental platform for innovative projects prioritizing inclusive and universal design.

Projects of the lab include:

  • Design Errands, a series of design observations and essays about cognition by Roberto Casati and Goffredo Puccetti, hopes to encourage the practice of observing our surrounding environment and paying attention to how things, systems, spaces, etc., are designed and, from that, probing into how design shapes the way we think and act.
  • Mending Our Ways, a student-designed publication analyzing the wayfinding of the campus environment and presenting student-designed solutions
  • Tahwheel, a project to design a cycling-friendly abaya, originating from a student design proposal
  • Emirates Nature-WWF visual identity, a collaboration with the Emirati branch of the World Wildlife Foundation to design a new and locally-relevant identity
  • Naksh, a research project to digitize the learning process of Arabic calligraphy
  • Xenon Dark Matter Project visual identity, an identity for a lab searching for dark matter at the INFN Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso, Italy
  • Logos and identities for NYUAD research centers, including the Center for Astro, Particle, and Planetary Physics, the Arabian Center for Climate and Environmental Sciences, Ma: the Ancient Boat Lab, and the CAMeL Lab


Contact Us

Goffredo Puccetti
Associate Professor of Practice of Visual Arts