Dear Colleagues and Students,
It is with deep sadness that I inform you of the death of our former colleague Professor Martin Smith. Many of you may already have seen the news that was issued by Art Center College of Design earlier. We have been able to contact Martin's family to obtain further details. Martin has had a car accident where he was hit by a drunk driver. He suffered a number of strokes and passed away in the hospital in Los Angeles, USA. Martin was an organ donor, and through his donation, he was able to save three lives.
Martin joined PolyU Design as a Chair Professor of Product Design in 2008 from Art Center College. He was a real hands-on designer specialising in transportation design with a wealth of experience in studio teaching. He had an excellent sense of aesthetics and was keen on quality in many different types of design. During his 6-year tenure in Hong Kong, he built the new 4-year curriculum for Product Design, shaped the Master's program in Design Practices, and created great synergies amongst our Product Design colleagues. All of these achievements contributed greatly to the reputation that PolyU Design has garnered today.
We extend our heartfelt condolences to his wife, Babette, and his children.
Those who are in Years 3 and 4 will still remember him quite well as some of them graduate this year. Martin joined Art Center College again when he returned to Pasadena, California. Let us take a moment to share with you our fond memories of Martin, his enthusiasm, and his dedication in design education through an interview with him in 2008 (read below).
Cees de Bont