Wednesday, August 25, 2010

lecture 6

two way street: the designer and the viewer
how do you communicate ideas?
representation sits between what i want to say and how th eviewer interprets it

there is no single definition of representation though

using signs to stand for an idea or an object

what plays significant a role?
the sign
the mental concept
the users of the sign

"building a mental picture of reality"

representation is not universal, it depends on cultural background, life experience, etc

as a viewer,everytime you intereact with a design or concept you assimilate that information within your own life experience

example of orientalism
representation of the 'orient'
painting played a key role, which of course didn't represent the orient accurately

propaganda as a very dangerous method of representation, the manipulation of representation to achieve a particular goal

the analysis of diesel ads (very interesting)

Monday, August 23, 2010

studio 4: coffee machine 2d

this composition also examines dalisi's process, but without colour. i looked at the 'problem' ie the design as a maze dalisi had to see through, but then i thought that the design process entails multiple mazes, so i included five of them. this layer is underneath the second and is physically separated. on the second layer i looked at how he created ideas, and how they become clearer as he goes through the design process. there are no complete words until he experiences the rather chaotic stage where all sorts of ideas clash with each other, but there is still nothing concrete. eventually he starts developing complete words (ideas) and they get together to form the coffee machine.

studio 4: coffee machine 3d

this one develops the first study i made, which is the process dalisi went through. the initial part is mostly black and pink. the black is the uncertainty, and the pink is the initial ideas/plan he applied, which then disappears after the middle part where he has a phase of confusion and there is bit of a chaos. however, the ideas he ends up applying are still visible from the beginning to a certain extent. in the end he comes up with a smooth and concrete form which incorporates several interrelated ideas.

studio 4: paradise carpet

my analysis of the carpet uses some of the methods i applied for my grid exercise. i wanted to work in a grid but not a rectangular rigid grid like the one i worked on for the exercise. so, i made my own grid.

grid sketch:

so the grid still has a mid point like on persian carpets and has several smaller sections. it is also semi-symmetrical.

next i looked at the patterns. i looked at the curvy forms and colours and prepared a study from which i cut pieces to form the patterned part of the composition:

then i combined the patterned pieces with the calligraphic compositions i made for the grid exercise. the words are different, but they're still persian.

and the result:

the composition can be arranged in a circular or rectangular form. in the rectangular form in the photo above, it is spread on an a2 size, however, it fits on an a3 when all the pieces are put together.

i will refine this further during the break.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

studio four: different trains. steve reich, by roger sutherland

"systems music":
represents process, little variation of pitch, rythm, etc.

the emhpasis is on the texture rather than intricate composition. this technique is also observed in arvo paert's work.

heavily influenced by non-western musical traditions. in reich's case, balinese and ghanian music.

reich went through a very long process of experimentation until he found his musical language.

even though reich's works sounds very subtle to the ear, they have a complex structure underneath.

different trains, performed by the kronos quartet (who also perform many of arvo paert's works)

in different trains reich interprets everyday speech into music.

reich's work reflect his experience in ghana, and his jewish background.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Evelyn Glennie : how to listen to music with your whole body

this was a very very interesting video, and as a music lover opened my eyes to a complete new layer of music.

evelyn glennie is a deaf musician, who 'hears' music through the musical values the notes represent, the vibrations within the space and her body, and through the rythm, of course.

it was quite amazing to see how she interacted with the audience and made them think about how they perceive music, and explained that you don't only 'listen' to music with your ears but there are several different factors to be taken into account.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

studio 4: paradise

another study of the paradise. this one draws heavily on islamic patterns.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

drawing in a grid

my paradise: to me paradise is an abstract concept, not a physical place with sunshine, tropical fish, hot guys, perpetual summer etc etc. so i chose two persian words and distorted them, and then combined them together to form an abstract composition that represents my paradise. i first looked at a couple of traditional calligraphy.

some examples:

initial study for the words:

secondary study

for the rivers i applied the same method of distortion, this time more literal, so someone who can read persian may be able to make out one or two of the words. the words are the names of the four rivers in the "paradise".

they are:

for the animals and plants, i thought i might be a bit more literal, so i looked at how animals are represented on persian carpets:

and my interpretation:

Monday, August 9, 2010

studio 4 lecture week 4

recap: generative metaphors, how to approach problems, coming up with solutions etc

three case studies

one. diller and scofidio
blur: the making of nothing

switzerland, looking into the culture, geography, languages etc
exhibitions as forming a national identity in a diverse country like switzerland
"a laboratory of ideas"
analysis of the different parts of the exhibit

"a matrix of associations"
clashing ideas and concepts
the project in evolution
constant exchange of information and ideas
analysis of the site
natural elements; mist, water, wind, etc
interaction between the visitors of the exhibit

the swarowski chandelier; analysing the characteristics of the chandelier and reinterpreting them

some others

studio 4: dalisi's process

a 3-d study.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

studio 4: paradise reading

the first article talks about the concept of paradise within the western context, as well as examining some myths.

the second studies the concept of paradise in islam, drawing on several verses from the koran, and some poems. this is particularly interesting for me, since i grew up in a muslim country so i have a deeper understanding, but i grew up in that muslim country as a non-muslim so i still cannot completely understand how a devout muslim would feel about these ideas.

perhaps the most well known one is pandora's box! pandora opens the box and all blessings escape, but hope stays. hope is the only blessing mankind has to survive.

it is interesting to contrast the perceptions of the west and the east, but what is most interesting about both is the effort people have made to make sense of the things happening around them. people have, in a sense, made up stories in an effort to explain their surroundings, the world they inhabit, and of course, their lives. no wonder religion still plays a very important role in our lives today since there is still so much we cannot explain, including what happens when we die, hence all the ideas about paradise! =)

a study of my paradise:

Monday, August 2, 2010

studio four: paradise

persian paradise carpets

based on the islamic idea of paradise, designs have evolved over many generations

concepts of paradise among different cultures differ

the word paradise is of persian origin: literally meaning walled garden
(reminds me of the garden of earthly delights)

the story of garden/paradise in the genesis

adam and eve are expelled from the garden and since then have desired to go back to that garden

similar ideas in the islamic tradition and certain similar concepts in the buddhist tradition

tibetan tantric art

paradise in ancient greek culture:
perpetual spring with its own stars

garden in islam
a confined space within a wall
(however, there are several interpretations of this concept among different islamic cultures.)

some attributes of the islamic garden:
-usually rectangular
-usually include water channels
-textured plants
-the water brings sound to the space

the manifestation of this concept of paradise on carpets:

kurdish carpets, with different approaches towards the manifestation of paradise ( so they're not limited to persian carpets)

the immense amount of labour and skill that goes into producing a single carpet is in itself a metaphor of the difficulty (or even impossibility) of attaining the level of awareness and perfection one needs to be worth of "paradise"

patterns used in persian carpets and their symbolism (

the use of colour:
red great:joy
green:sacred colour

garden in persian miniatures:
babur's gardens
plants were chosen for their symbolism, their texture, etc

symbolism in alhambra

other cultures:

garden of eden is believed to be based in historical kurdistan

"the task is not so much to see what no one has yet seen, but to think what no one has thought about that which everyone sees".

Sunday, August 1, 2010


a conceptual study of the coffee machine. i looked at the coffee machine as the result/embodiment of several ideas and thoughts etc, how they clash, how they stand as separate entities within the same frame.