Research Team

Greg Polvi


What I learned most was the need for awareness of other cultures in the creation of any kind of design. I began to understand that the context of design goes well beyond different languages and being on the other side of the world. I experienced how differences in culture and social contexts can create an entirely different systematic universe that I was never aware of, and truly, it was something to be amazed by. While many might rave about the historical aspects of the trip, my overall favourite thing was seeing how things such as urban planning and simple social principles can shape a society and profoundly change the way people interact with one another, affecting absolutely everything through small differences in ideals. Comparing Italy to North America is something that I will do for the rest of my life, for the comparisons are so fascinating, and the introduction that I was given to these different contexts is a wonderful way of looking at things that I will no doubt use for the rest of my life, both as a designer and simply in everyday life.

Perhaps even more exciting about the trip was not just what I learned, but what I discovered to be interests that I previously knew nothing about. Essentially what I learned that I had not yet learned about. I had no idea until the trip that I would discover so many other design-related interests, mainly social awareness and urban design, two areas of study that I will inevitably end up studying in much greater detail in the future. What has always excited me about the design program is it's ability to open up countless potential directions for study. Whereas, if you study history, you stick to history. If you study mathematics, you stick to mathematics. If you study design, it is such a deep and rich field of study that is connected to so many things, that you begin to open doors to many, many things. You excite yourself with the knowledge that for the rest of your life, you will never be stuck in one field of study, and that with added knowledge you can easily shift the focus of your career, because your skills are still relevant and very adaptable.




  • My favourite moment was the first day of the trip, Russel (Taylor) taking the group on an initial tour through the streets of Roma. While talking to my friend Adam as we were walking through a seemingly nothing alleyway, we winded down the street to suddenly find the Pantheon literally on top of us visually, appearing as if out of nowhere. Italian architecture's tendency to create visual surprise was on display throughout the trip, but this was my favourite instance of it, and my favourite moment of the trip overall. Absolutely indescribable.


  • In interviewing Fuksas, he spoke about how he attempts to create conflicting emotions and ideas in his architectural work, such as love and hate, or life and death. I recall being speechless and completely blown away by that idea.


The Pantheon in Roma


At the time of the trip, I had just completed my third year of studying Interactive Arts and Technology, and my first studying Interaction Design.


My goals and interests in the field of design are ever changing as I discover more and more of the possibilities. I'm starting to understand that the potential is limitless, and I can achieve whatever I work hard at, and this excites me to no end.


I am interested in music, the power of the human mind, typography, design, primal human behaviour, and love.