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Alice Czarnowska

MA work

'Sounds Good?' Impact of aircraft noise.

Imagine the future impact of Heathrow expansion. London is awashed by constant aircraft noise. At the park, in the playground, in the garden, in the classroom, in your bedroom: every 90 seconds your kids’, parents’, teachers’, lovers’ voice is fading. The purpose of this project is to make people more aware about the hazards and costs brought by the technology and how noise influences our health, wellbeing, cognitive processes and the environment. This project examines how Heathrow Airport impacts London communities living under the flight path, their comfort of life and cognitive perception. Final installation proposes an ironic design fiction solution: anti noise desk for schools, where every 90 seconds teachers voice is fading when an aircraft is passing by. The desk enables to keep listening, despite the noise. It is a message to decisive people asking for more attention in future flight paths planning.

Final installation: Anti-noise Desk. The installation uses bone conductivity and consists from the wooden desk and a chair. The desk contains two surface conductors embedded below its top surface, marked with two elbow fitting shallow wholes. When a visitor rests his elbows inside the table holes and caps his ears with own hands he is able to listen to the soundtrack. Reminiscent of a duck and cover posture of a visitor interacting with the sound reminds covering from danger or here from unpleasant extreme noise (aircraft noise). A flock of paper airplanes surrounds the desk in number of exact flights interrupting every lesson.


  • MA Degree


    School of Communication


    MA Information Experience Design, 2015

  • Raised to be a pianist, Alice Czarnowska chose to become a visual communicator. She joined the Royal College of Art in 2012 as a visual identity designer and evolved into an experience designer. Alice’s previous experience is in territorial branding projects, which gives her a practical approach and unique perspective as a designer, enabling her to empathise with people and their surroundings. These methods and approaches inform Alice’s design when working towards defining the personality of a place at a local and national level. Each branding project was a result of a complex research process: based on qualitative and quantitative data that informed the visual creation. Additionally, she worked on complex industrial projects involving packaging and labelling systems.

    During the two years of studying Information Experience Design, Alice has been able to hone her skills, develop new skills and work out an unique approach to data representation, with social issues, sustainability and new technologies being a key focus in her projects. Her design is 'design for good'; it’s a contribution to improving people's lives by creating more meaningful experiences. Recently she took a more critical approach to design, which can be seen in her final Sounds Good? project. Alice is interested in 'transhumanism', which promotes an interdisciplinary approach to understanding and evaluating the opportunities for enhancing the human condition by the advancement of technology. She is also fascinated by sound, which plays a significant role in the majority of her projects. Early musical education taught her how to listen rather than just hearing sounds. In a world dominated by images, people need to be reminded of the existence of sound, this background noise, sidekick of the visible. It's the sound that alerts our brains first though, before the vision. 

    At the Royal College of Art Alice took every opportunity to engage in collaborative projects led by the Helen Hamlyn Centre – leader in inclusive design – and SustainRCA. Her 'Cultural Interfaces' project applied digital technology to bridge generations and celebrate Hindu culture with 'Show and Tell Companion' – elderly-friendly multimedia device (watch here). 'Effectricity' in respond to 'Seeing Things' brief focused on home energy use. Alice also developed 'Smiling Socket' project, inspired by Imperial College scientists dealing with future energy demand problems and behavioural change of energy consumers. With this idea she had the privilege to join the InnovationRCA summer school. In response to the 'Sound Object' brief, Alice and her team created the 'Default language' project as a metaphorical examination of people's relationship with the technology and the sound as an information constantly alerting us with default sounds produced by personal devices (watch here). 

  • Degrees

  • BA Ceramics and Glass Design, Academy of Art and Design, 2003
  • Experience

  • Art director, Koelner-Rawlplug S.A. Wroclaw, London, 2015; Founder and art director, Studio Luna, London, 2006–14; Senior brand designer, Metamorphosis Brand Communications, London, 2006–10
  • Exhibitions

  • Final BA Glass Exhibition, Cepelia Polish Art and Handicraft Gallery, Wroclaw, 2003; Farbe Bekennen - Gegen Globale Armut Poster competition, Haus der Geshichte, Germany, 2004; Life Examined Exhibition, London Design Festival, London, 2013; Work in Progress Show, Royal College of Art, London, 2013; Here. Now. Where?, Marrakesh Biennial, Marrakesh 2014