Purpose Prize

Marc Freedman Portrait

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Generational Harmonies

Generational Harmonies

After severe bullying from her high school classmates, violist Isabella Mier was suicidal and losing hope when she discovered the Eisner Intergenerational Orchestra. “Why don’t I just go play for one of my last times?” she asked herself. “And I went, and I just felt...


Eva Maddox and Stanley Tigerman

Purpose Prize Fellow 2008

Bringing good design to the communities, organizations and services that need it most.

In 1993, architect Stanley Tigerman and interior designer Eva Maddox were both award-winning heads of internationally renowned firms. Collaborating on a project, they shared concern that good design seemed restricted to large corporate offices and well-endowed museums. They agreed that good design could improve society by going where it was most needed: to housing projects, welfare system waiting rooms and products for people with disabilities. The result: the Archeworks school. Archeworks is an independent non-profit Chicago design school that involves students of all disciplines (including architecture and design), community members and end users in a joint design process. Teams of design students work with nonprofit groups, for-profit groups, community organizations and government agencies to create functional, beautiful objects and spaces for use by disadvantaged people: those with disabilities, homeless people, schoolchildren, the sick and the elderly. In 15 years, Archeworks has paired 175 students and 37 facilitators with more than 100 nonprofit organizations and other partners in more than 33 projects. The results: 1) transformation of design educational curriculum to engage community in a multidisciplinary model, and 2) creation of distinctive designs to work in meeting eldercare needs, delivering services for people with HIV, reforming disability education and so on. “We decided it was really critical to break down barriers and to think hard about how we could use our talents to make that happen. We decided we would do this in the context of social causes; in other words, designing something for those most in need of it.”