Masayo Ave

Born in Tokyo, Japan in 1962, Masayo Ave is a Japanese designer and pedagogue, who has settled in Europe and practiced both in Europe and Asia over the past two decades. She is an embodiment of both cultural and disciplinary synthesis, and as one of Japan’s most intriguing design luminaries, she brings her expertise not only in her innovative design work but also in educational field.

Graduated and trained in architecture in Japan, Masayo Ave’s world renowned career as a designer was launched in Milan, where she completed a Master’s degree in industrial design at Domus Academy and settled from 1990 to 2005. Among her numerous awards, Masayo Ave has received the fellowship grant at Academie Schloss Solitude in 1996, ICFF2000 editors award in 2000 and A&W Mentor Awards in 2006.

After a decade of a praised career as a designer, Masayo Ave has been active also in the field of design education since 2001, conducting many sensory based design workshops for university students and professionals. Masayo Ave founded an experimental design institute of Haptic Interface Design in the University of Arts in Berlin during her guest professorship in 2004-07. The following two years, she was appointed professor and head of product design department in Estonian Academy of Arts, and lately guest professor of Textile- and surface design department at Kunsthochshule Berlin Weissensee in 2012-13. She serve also on the jury of many international design competitions, including Red Dot Design Award and Interzum Award since 2004.

Equally as illustrious as her carrier as a designer, Masayo Ave is one of the most prominent and influential designer-teachers today, hailed as a master pedagogue of design education for children. For Masayo Ave, design is a process of discovery and a profound multisensory experience that needs to be cultivated from young and through entire life. Since 2006, she has been dedicating her career also in early childhood education. Using a blend of sensorial and imaginative approaches to basic design principles, she is developing and conducting special design workshop consists of a variety of design exercises to sensitize children to the world full of mystery around them.

By charting the simplest paths which preschool educators and children can take together on the journey of both humanistic- and scientific discoveries, she has been in charge to develop an early childhood educational program titled ManyWaysOfSeeing in cooperation with DesignSingapore Council, and also developed a new design workshop program for children practiced ad-hoc in design museum in cooperation with Design Zentrum Nordrhein Westfalen in the course of the EU project PROUD (People Researchers Organisations Using Design for co-creation and innovation).

Her European base had been moved from Milan to Berlin, resettling her design studio MasayoAve creation and Haptic Interface Design Institute in PierVago Haus in Hansaviertel, an architectural heritage of InterBau 1957 located in Berlin Tiergarten.