Candy Chang is an artist, designer, and urban planner who makes cities more comfortable for people. She’s passionate about redefining the ways we share information in public space to improve our neighborhoods and our personal well-being. As a 2011-2012 TED Senior Fellow and a 2011 Tulane/Rockefeller Foundation Urban Innovation Fellow, she has been recognized as a leader in developing new strategies for rethinking the design of our cities and how to live our best lives.

Recent projects include transforming a blighted house in New Orleans into an interactive wall of aspirations, a project which The Atlantic called “merely one of the most creative community projects ever.” She also repurposed an abandoned high-rise in Fairbanks as an archive of residents’ memories and hopes for the building, and she created interactive stickers and an online tool that help people voice what they want in their neighborhoods. Oprah Magazine named her a “Live Your Best Life” Local Hero and Fast Company named her an Emerging Master of Design. She has also been featured in The AtlanticUSA Network, GOODWiredand more.

She is the co-founder of Civic Center, a civic design studio in New Orleans. She received a BS in Architecture, a BFA in Graphic Design, and a Masters in Urban Planning from Columbia University. Her experience working with residents, community organizations, large companies, and local governments in cities around the world has given her a unique perspective on how to improve our lives. She has worked with communities in Johannesburg, New York City, Nairobi, Fairbanks, Almaty, Turku, VancouverQuerétaro, and New Orleans on projects about street vendors’ rights, tree plantingcriminal justice, housing costscareer choicesdowntown revitalization, economic development, and personal goals. She was also an art director at The New York Times and part of a future innovations group at Nokia. Her work has been exhibited in the National Design Triennial at the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, and she has created public art commissions for civic institutions, international airports, and creative organizations. She also once ran a small record label called Red Antenna and performed electro in New York, Detroit, and Grenoble. She has received awards from the Rockefeller Foundation, Sappi Ideas That Matter, and the Black Rock Arts Foundation. She speaks internationally and has given talks at conferences including TED, TYPO, and the Soros Foundation Youth ArtCamp in Kazakhstan.

Her parents immigrated from Taiwan to the U.S. and she grew up in the cornfields of Ohio and beyond. After years living in NYC and Helsinki, she now lives in New Orleans, where she’s loving porches, palm trees, and ceiling fans while working on projects, big and small. She believes that one of the greatest things in life is spending time in public places with the people you love. She also believes that the design of these spaces can better reflect what is important to us as a community and as individuals.

Photograph by Randal Ford for Fast Company. More about the stencil.

“Through a series of large-scale projects that combine installation art with social activism, Chang has encouraged people to engage with public spaces to let their voices be heard.” O, The Oprah Magazine

“Good urban design doesn’t just help people engage with their cities; according to artist and designer Candy Chang, it also helps people engage with each other… Chang creates public spaces that spark conversation and reflect a sense of community identity—often using little more than chalk, stickers, and some creativity.” - The Atlantic

“It’s hard to know where to begin with Candy Chang… We love how she has opened up discourse around public space by providing people with easy and innovative ways to have a say about how their urban environment should be developed.” – Wooster Collective, USA Network

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Black Rock Arts Foundation Grant, 2011

Tulane University / Rockefeller Foundation Urban Innovation Fellowship, 2011

TED Senior Fellowship, 2011

Fast Company Emerging Master of Design, 2010

Artist as Neighbour Residency, Turku, Finland, 2010

TED Global Fellowship, 2009

Center for Urban Pedagogy Making Policy Public Fellowship, 2008

Sappi Ideas That Matter Grant, 2008

Global Studio Johannesburg Fellowship, 2008

Columbia University Urban Planning Award for Outstanding Contribution to Leadership in Planning Education, 2007

Global Studio Johannesburg Fellowship, 2007

Infrastructure and Poverty Action Lab Fellowship, 2007

Spatial Information Design Lab New Orleans Fellowship, 2006

Global Studio Vancouver Fellowship, 2006



Upcoming: TED Conference, Long Beach, CA, 2012

Upcoming: Iconic Signage Project, Sponsored by the Arts Council of New Orleans, Broad Community Connections, and Open Air Project, New Orleans LA, 2011

Turku European Capital of Culture, Career Path, Turku, Finland, 2011

The Alaska Design Forum, Looking for Love Again, Fairbanks AK, 2011

Hypothetical Development, Mobile Cornucopia, New Orleans LA, 2010

Figment, Pedestrian Timeline, Governors Island NY, 2008

Koltsovo International Airport, Illuminators, Maps for Airports, Yekaterinburg Russia, 2008

Windows Brooklyn, Post-it Notes for Neighbors, Brooklyn NY, 2008



Upcoming: Festival of Death, Southbank Centre, London, UK 2012

Onomatopee, The Voice Of…, Eindhoven, Netherlands, 2011

Du Mois Gallery, Hypothetical Development, New Orleans LA, 2011

East/West Galleries, Subtext Projects, Fort Worth TX, 2011

Du Mois Gallery, Ethnographic Terminalia, New Orleans LA, 2010

GALLEY, Poster Offensive, Minneapolis MN, 2010

Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, National Design Triennial, New York NY, 2010 – 2011

Center for Architecture, Global Polis, New York NY, 2009

Sci-Arc, @, Los Angeles CA, 2009

Traveling exhibition, Poster4Tomorrow, Amsterdam, Ankara, Beirut, Belgrade, Brussels, Chungnam, Derry, Heidelberg, La Paz, Lima, Lisbon, Los Angeles, Marrakech, Milan, Montreal, Paris, Quito, Seville, Stockholm, Tbilisi, Vienna, 2009

MC2 Maison de la culture de Grenoble, Grenoble France, 2007

Conflux Festival, Brooklyn NY, 2007

OPENSOURCE, Skinless Capital: Neoliberalism and Resistance,Champaign-Urbana IL, 2005

Traveling exhibition, Stick Up, New York!, New York, London, Berlin, Tokyo, 2005



Upcoming: Carnegie Mellon University School of Design, Pittsburgh, PA, Mar 27 2011

Upcoming: University of Utah College of Architecture and Planning, Salt Lake City, UT, Apr 4 2011

TEDxTU, New Orleans, LA, Nov 2011

Factor Clave 2011: Visión Diseño (Key Factor 2011: Design Vision Conference), Querétaro, Mexico, Oct 2011

TEDGlobal Conference, Edinburgh Scotland, Jul 2011

Summer Public Art School, Turku Finland, Jun 2011

Soros Foundation Youth ArtCamp Conference, Almaty Kazakhstan, May 2011

Alaska Design Forum Common Space Symposium, Anchorage AK, Fairbanks AK, Apr 2011

TED Conference, Long Beach CA, Mar 2011

TYPO Berlin International Design Conference, Berlin Germany, May 2010

TEDGlobal Conference, Oxford UK, Jul 2009

Aalto University School of Science and Technology, Helsinki Finland, Apr 2009

Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, New York NY, Mar 2007



Master of Science, Urban Planning
Columbia University
Thesis on local communication in public space

Bachelor of Fine Arts, Graphic Design
University of Michigan

Bachelor of Science, Architecture
University of Michigan

And the school of life on the streets of Belize, Canada, Chile, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Mozambique, Norway, Russia, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Turkey, UAE, and USA so far



In documentary film Urbanized by Gary Hustwit, 2011

Book Launch Party for The Road to Somewhere: An American Memoir by James A. Reeves, New York NY, 2011

On the jury for A Logo for Human Rights, 2011

Scottsdale Public Art Think Tank, Scottsdale AZ, 2011

CEOs for Cities US Initiative: Community Challenge, Detroit MI, 2010



Why Design Now?
ed. National Design Triennial, 2010, New York: Smithsonian Institute.

Fingerprint: The Art of Using Handmade Elements in Graphic Design
ed. Chen Design Associates, 2006, Cincinnati: How Books.

Stickers!: From the First International Sticker Awards
2006, Berlin: Gestalten Verlag.



Space Oddity
David Bowie

Didn’t I Blow Your Mind This Time
The Delfonics

These Days

The Dead Flag Blues (Intro)
Godspeed You! Black Emperor

Francoise Hardy

Angor Wat Theme Finale
Shigeru Umebayashi

Waiting for the Miracle
Leonard Cohen

The Chase
Giorgio Moroder

Johann Johannsson


Yester Me Yester You Yesterday
Stevie Wonder

Je t’aime… moi non plus
Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin



The Little Prince
Antoine Saint-Exupery

Tibor Kalman, Perverse Optimist
Peter Hall, ed.

Devil in the White City
Erik Larson

A Little History of the World
E.H. Gombrich

J.G. Ballard

Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth
Chris Ware

White Noise
Don DeLillo

Made You Look
Stefan Sagmeister

Never Let Me Go
Kazuo Ishiguro

Letters from the Avant-Garde: Modern Graphic Design
edited by Elaine Lustig Cohen

Consider the Lobster
David Foster Wallace

City: Rediscovering the Center
William H. Whyte

Understanding Comics
Scott McCloud



The City of Lost Children
Jean-Pierre Jeunet & Marc Caro

Blade Runner
Ridley Scott

Rear Window
Alfred Hitchcock

Royal Tenenbaums
Wes Anderson

New York: A Documentary Film
Ric Burns

Hudsucker Proxy
Joel Coen

Kill Bill
Quentin Tarantino

Fritz Lang

The English Patient
Anthony Minghella

Singin’ in the Rain
Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly

Jean-Luc Godard

Total Recall
Paul Verhoeven

In the Mood for Love
Wong Kar Wai

The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces (watch it here!)
William Whyte




World’s Fairs


The Mathetmatica Exhibit by Charles and Ray Eames

The marketing of The Plan of Chicago by Daniel Burnham

Oskar Schlemmer

Claes Oldenburg

Josef Müller-Brockmann

Jenny Holzer

Cedric Price

A.M. Cassandre

Buckminster Fuller

Joseph Paxton



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