Community Design

Kam Heritage Project
Dimen village, Guizhou Province, China

In cooperation with the Dimen Dong Cultural Eco Museum, Marie Anna Lee and her students have worked in and with the community of Dimen to preserve its cultural heritage, promote local identity and improve its living standards through various design methodologies.

The project received 2013 and 2014 seed award honorable mentions. Standing for Social Economic Environmental Design, seed highlights best practices in the field of Public Interest Design.

Visit the project's website for detailed information

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Concept / What is the project about?

Local Partners


Lee says about her design process:

"I am interested in community-based work where I not only design with a particular audience in mind, but closely involve my clients in the process and use design to solve their specific needs. They in turn are no longer clients simply waiting for a finished work that may or may not be what they need, but become part of the solution from start to finish and contribute to the end product. This approach often leads to my collaboration with professionals from other disciplines, creating solutions that go beyond design and have a broader impact on the specific community."



Cultural Preservation Process

Documenting the Crafts



Workshops for Adults and Children; 2014 Smithsonian Folklife Festival in DC


Student projects: Childrens Documentary, Graphic Novel, Coloring Book





Living Wages



Products made by cooperative for sale in US




Developing Products: Student prototype; prototypes by Lee and Wu Mengxi; How To Guides



Design for Dimen Dong Eco Museum and its parent Western China Cultural Ecology Research Workshop




Incisions of the Subconsceous
Concerto for Brush and Hand
Blind Books
Eye Spy
Shatin Dream
Community Design
Interdisciplinary Design
Design Innovation
Fine Art