Kelli Anderson

Steiner Lecturer


Kelli Anderson (@kellianderson) is an artist/designer and tinkerer who draws, photographs, cuts, prints, codes, and creates a variety of designed things for herself and others. From interactive paperforms to layered, experimental websites, Kelli subverts expectations by injecting humor and surprise into everyday objects. In fall 2017, she published This Book Is a Planetarium: And Other Extraordinary Pop-Up Contraptions, a book about how humble materials can perform extraordinary feats—and featuring a tiny, pop-up planetarium and other functional contraptions.

Kelli writes: “In my work, I try to better understand how things work so that I might demonstrate their surprising capabilities hidden in plain sight. However, lo-fi research methods are also being used in (what would traditionally be considered) high-tech fields. Using strategies like origami, engineering labs are also seeking ways to make complex problems tangible—to open then up to physical intuition. By engaging abstractions tangibly, we often find surprising possibilities hidden in plain view.”

“Kelli Anderson is one of the most talented, thoughtful, inspiring young designers working today, bringing to each project an artist’s flair, a scientist’s rigor, and a philosopher’s deliberation.” —Maria Popova, Brainpickings