How is Design ‘Aesthetic’? Processes of Meaning Formulation and Cultural Framing in Design

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This paper has a dual purpose. First, it will present an interpretive framework for investigating the formation and articulation of aesthetic meaning in design. Hereby, aesthetic meaning can be seen to evolve on three levels, on a sensual-phenomenological level, a conceptual-critical level, and a contextual-discursive level. Taking this as an outset, the paper will then critically reflect the impact of the cultural framing of design and focus at the cultural element of aestheticization, that is, the procedures by which design objects are not only regarded as aesthetic in themselves but also attributed meaning as aesthetic by external factors, e.g. in mediation. The play on aesthetic meaning in the context of aestheticization is reflected in a close analysis of a case of contemporary Danish design, the lamp series Caravaggio (2005) by Cecilia Manz for the company Light Years. Thus, it is an argument of the paper, that when we ask for the aesthetics in design, how design is aesthetic, this may be answered by both addressing the internal meaning formulation and the external cultural framing in design.
TidsskriftWassard Elea Rivista
Udgave nummer1
Sider (fra-til)14-30
Antal sider17
StatusUdgivet - 20. apr. 2014
BegivenhedThe Aesthetics of Design: American Society of Aesthetics - Ascea, Italien
Varighed: 16. maj 201418. maj 2014


SeminarThe Aesthetics of Design