Last session covered early form of visual communication in ancient times to graphic design in WW2. This session started with definition of modernity.
What is modernity?
- Quality of thought
- Quality or condition of being modern
Modernity is related to the term modernism which is quality of thought, expression or technique and heavily influenced the practice of literature, art and design. For instance, before Modernism, Realism was prevailed and in realism literature objective view point of narration tells a story which basically knows every thing. However, perception of Modernism literature is that no one knows everything.
I made a mistake that session today didn’t start with the term of modernity, it started with use of photography.
Why use photography?
- It can convey a message more accurately than illustration or painting
Photography seems to have sense of reality even though most of it in adverts are staged. Also it gives sense of authenticity.
Alexander Rodthenko, Lengiz Book Poster 1925
How does design express ideology?
Fraktur: the most famous font Nazi used, the use of it has a particular ideology behind it. It represents heritage to express return of great Germany from the past.
Ideology played an important role in 20 century. For instance, Nazi evoked sense of nationalism, before the rise of Hitler German society was exhausted then he offered people sense of pride: return of great Germany using graphic design as well as his speech. Nationalistic ideology fits war time. He effectively used land scape painting to convey nationalistic ideology. The reason why he used land scape painting is that it is difficult to subvert.
After WW2, communism raised and it led ideological battle capitalism against communism: Cold War.
Communism still exist today but it’s not as powerful as before. Ideology today kind of disguise, question is “Are you conscious about it?”. There is an ideology behind what you buy, for instance.
Which ideology you express?
Helvetica 1957 It has neutrality that also has ideology behind it; communication should be clear and objective.
Whole earth Catalogue between 1968 and 1972
This image of the earth is first photo taken and give sense of what the earth looks like. Before the photo was taken, people knew the earth is a sphere but look of it wasn’t known. It has changed perception of the earth. The book gave first opportunity to raise green ideology and ecology.
How does design convey meaning?
Louis Danziger, American Painting exhibition poster, 1966
He used visual strategy. The use of metaphor was developed as technique of semiotics in mid 20th century. In this image, a signifier is a paint brush and signified is painting even though every artists don’t use paint brush. The blue square and red borders are signifier and these signified America. Combination of these signified American painting. The text plays minor role in this poster.
IBM, Paul Land 1981
The eye, the bee and M have different level of complexity. The images eye and bee signified a letter ‘I’ and ‘B’, the letter ‘M’ obviously signified ‘M’.
Where design comes from?
Paula Scher, Poster, 1995
A term ‘vernacular design’ was introduced at the lecture. Kristian Bjørnard stated what vernacular design is, “vernacular design is more than a collection of quotable styles and false nostalgia—it is a systematic method for creation that can guide us toward more sustainable practices. Systems thinking is a leading development in contemporary design and those systems re- quiring the least resources will best serve design on its path toward sustainability. Vernacular design offers a valuable model as its aim is accomplishing the most with the least.”
Tim told us vernacular design comes from anywhere which is post-modernism way of thinking. Personally I have been thinking that appropriately applying various past design practices to projects could be my design strategy for some reason on the other hand I have been also thinking this method isn’t ideologically strong enough as using different design theories that has ideology behind these. Anyway he made me realized that the thought is post-modernism way of thinking. I am not sill sure this theory is effective or not, though.
Vernacular design emerged as role of graphic designer has been changed as development of softwares and equipments.
Post-modernism doesn’t concern form and function. It is more like how we express things we know and what level of personal freedom you got.
Kristian Bjørnard, Principles of Vernacular Design (and their application today), at http://www.response-abilityconference.com/paperspdf/Bjornard-VernacularPrinciples.pd (accessed 1 March 2016)
Personal exhibition poster, Stefan Segmaister, 1999
Carved typography on his own body that has strong visual impact whether you like it or not. It evokes me pain of carving letters, although it conveys message pretty well that the exhibition would present his personal view point in graphic design and the word ‘strips’ on the box in his left hand refers that too. Visual strategy he used advanced from that of past times.
What is future of design?
- The internet plays an important role.
- Resistance to authenticity
- Work place-from house/office
- Better work balance
- Also technology plays an important role.
- Resistance to technology
- Balance of high tech and analogue
Internet of things-automatically tells you what you need. e.g. telling low level of ink by computer.
Tim told us “how open are you to find alternatives?” and “think about thins you really don’t like.” I find these quite important to do design as I tend to look at only thing I like. These are very important to progress!!