Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Postmodernity, Late Modernism, B

During this time we labeled as Post Modernism there were many political and economic changes as well as changes and advancements in design. "In present context of inclusiveness and relativity, notinos of reform, alienation, resistance and subversion have relinquished a measure of their power to define what has been a vital aspect of the history of modern design." (Raizman 354). Postmodernism is sometimes called post-industrialism or late capitalism, but all of these names refer to a culture where consumption is known as the 'common subtext, emerging first in the early years of postwar affluencein the United States and spreading to Europe and other developed nations." (Raizman 355). Some of the big names during this time that you might recognize are Frank Gehry, Robert Venturi ( who had a series of chairs manufactured by Knoll)and Neville Brody.



This time period was a time for expression and experimentation with shapes as well as materials and color. With these new ideas in mind new organizations started to emerge, creating companies that did more than your average designs. One of the major organizations that emereged was a company called Memphis. Memphis was made up of "industrial designers said to be "liberated" from their contracts with particular companies with freedom to pursue directions beyond the parameters of good design." (Raizman 355). They did everything from organizing group exhibitons in Milan to manufacturing furniture. The table in the picture above was designed by Ettore Sottsass Jr. produced by Memphis.
In this time of expression furniture design was not the only challenging aspect in postmodern culture. Behavior, dress and accessories associated with the punk movement were said to be aggressive, destructive, and uninhibited. This is were 'graffiti' began to become a real problem.

The postmoderism era had a huge affect on our culutre from political and economical issues as well as design and individual style. How do you feel about the push toward looking past average 'good' design? Do you think this was a step in the right direction? Also how do you feel about the epression of individualism with the newly found 'punk' style, changing not only they way people look at design but they way they express their own 'designs' through their dress and behavior?

17 comments:

Meaghan Boenig said...

I think that the push towards new ideas instead of keeping with “average” designs during the Late Modernism period was completely normal and necessary. Think about the history of design - coming up with new ideas is what design is all about. There would be no history of design if people didn’t push themselves and strive to create better things. This is why I’m not surprised artists and architects and designers were aspiring to create something that would stand out from the designs of the Modern era. It was time for a change. I think that the “punk” style was important. It was a new way for people to express themselves. Life would be so monotonous if everyone had the same views and way of thinking, which is why I think it’s important for people to be able to express themselves.

Carrie R. said...

I think that the push towards looking past average design was definitely a step in the right direction. Thinking above and beyond is what design is all about. This is how design continues to grow & evolve because designers are constantly looking for a new & better solution. I think that the “punk” style was pretty important to design. It was not only a new design aspect & idea, but a way for people to express themselves through the way they dress. If you think about it, we all dress a certain way to say something about ourselves. The “punk” style was a way of expressing and conveying beliefs, opinions, feelings, as well as one’s self.

maggie clines said...

I personally feel that as a designer, there is a need to not only express yourself through your work, but also through everything you do; such as dress and behavior. I personally am also very interested in fashion and I feel that by dressing the way I do, shows another side to me and also helps show who I am. The punk movement began a new since of style and individuality which people today continue to strive for. From this individuality, people also began to push for individual design. I feel that because people strived to create individuality in their total lifestyle, and also in their work, it lead to the push for work above average. This way of thinking is continued today, and I can even see in it developing in our studio. Slowly people begin to develop their personal style which filters not just through their work, but also in the way they present themselves such as dress and attitude toward life.

Amy Clark said...

Pushing boundaries is a positive thing even if the result isn't necessarily the best design. The process of being creative is important especially in our field. New items, methods, etc., wouldn't be possible if people didn't think outside of the box. So yes, I do think it was good that society looked past what was considered average design and accepted new or different things. I'm not a particular fan of the "punk" style but it was a way for individuals to express themselves. However, I do think it became a trend at some point vs. self expression. Clothing is definitely a way to communicate who you are, and it is a good vehicle for self expression. The whole idea of pluralism with the encouragement of diversity was beneficial to postmodern design.

Jessica Brake said...

I feel that pushing towards new ideas and designs was practically a necessity in order to advance design forward. Although we look to the past for influences, it’s the way we turn those influences around and create something new and exciting to catch people’s attention. As far as the “punk” style that has been popular for awhile I think it too developed from past styles. If you look at earlier 80’s fashion it was a way for the younger generation to rebel and stand out, giving them an avenue to express themselves. Now, we have that same sort of idea creating the “punk” style. Design is a way of letting your personality show in a creative way so I guess what all this is kind of saying is that if we put boundaries on design we will always see the same type of stuff and it would be hard for us to move forward.

olivia said...

The entire process of creating and designing new things is crucial in interior design. Looking to new ideas is an important part of design and life in general. By stretching the boundaries, individuality arises automatically. Having your own personal style is important when working in the design field and in life. The "punk" style was a very important aspect of this time period. It was a new way to show one's ideas and individuality and to express themselves. Showing individuality in design as well as in your clothing choices helps to push the boundaries and create new ideas.

Veronica said...

I agree with Meaghan when she says that "the push towards new ideas instead of keeping with “average” designs during the Late Modernism period was completely normal and necessary".
Thanks to the development of new materials and techniques to produce objects, designers were pushing their creativity further than ever before, coming up with combinations of lines, shapes, forms and colors that were unique at that time.
The way that the development of new materials and techniques affected design was also reflected in fashion design. Most of the times a change of style in history affects every field of art, architecture, design, industry, engineering and so many more. The punk style was the reflection of a stylistic change that was affecting the Western world at that time. As a reflection of the style of late modernism, the punk style as well used very strong colors with high contrast between them and weird shapes, especially for the hair! Have you ever seen Harajuku in Tokyo? It's the most extreme neeghborhood of the metropolis, for its architecture and the young generations that shop in it, the Harajuku girls, that are the Japanese version of the 1970s punks of the Western societies. For Harajuku, as well as for punks, their fashion is the reflection of the new style and the push toward new ideas. It feels almost as if these teenagers blend with the style of the surroundings. And so did the punks.
So I feel that when a change occurs it affects all society's aspects, and it is necessary in order to move towards something new and more revolutionary than the previous style.

Kelsey Giauque said...

Post Modernism literally refers to the modernist movement, while modern refers to something occurring in the present. I believe that nothing is designed without historical precedent in mind. Everything builds upon the former. But at the same time, it either changes or remains similar. Post Modernism totally rejected tradition. I believe this is a good thing because it keeps our society moving forward. Although the “punk” movement is not necessarily aesthetically pleasing to my personal style, I appreciate it for its uniqueness and where it led us today. what I really apprecaite about the "punk" style is the change from dependence on the past, to a complete focus on one's personal expression. Although it became a mainstream style, it was still highly individualistic. One my favorite people from the post-modern period is Michael Graves. His designs were whimsical and yet they were very simple. He continues to design today, and his style had developed tremendously over the year, and it originated in the –post-modernist era.

carrie w said...

I think the push past average "good" design is one of the best things that has happen to design as a whole. It is great that designers are thinking outside the box without any fear of how people will criticise their work. It is 100% a step in the right direction. If design is going to continue changings as much as it does now and has in the past, things must happen like this in order to keep things new and interesting. i love the "punk" style, it think its great and truly innovative. People should be able to create any kind of work that they want and I think it is so intriguing that they can express their artowrk thorug their appearance and the clothes they wear. Even more so than that is the fact that they express themselves through their actions. It is really a great thing and I truly hope it continues.

Molly Rowland said...

During the period of "postmodernity" boundaries were forgotten within the field of design. I believe this to have been a positive move forward because without challenging what we know, there would never be any progress. As far as the punk movement, I think that society just wasn't used to reform being expressed so freely. People were now portraying their ideas through their actions as well as their appearance. Although this may have been shocking at the time, it is important for people to embody what they believe. Without expression, no new ideas would ever be introduced into the world. No old ideas would ever be challenged by new ones.

Julie said...

The rebellion into the punk style was totally necessary and inevitable. It was almost like through each style American designs were growing up and this was the stray away from the norm and way to seek independence. I think this helped really allow the entire nation get involved in expressing themselves by taking it into clothing. This allowed art and designs to be created by the artists but everyone was taking part in showing their creative side. I think we still have this style its just changed into a more modern and up-to-date direction of our time.

Moore13 said...

Im not really sure how anyone could think pushing the envelop, stirring up controversy with design is a bad thing. Part of being a designer is pushing yourself beyond what you thought was possible, it's giving people a new insight, a new appreciation for what we do. Anyone can recreate what's already been done, but what's the fun in that? Without a doubt pushing and moving further past the "average good" design was a positive move. As for the move towards "punk" design, everyone deserves to express themselves, not everyone may understand or agree but it's what makes design great. Look at the group of girls in our studio, we are all so different, each with a different background and history that makes us who we are today. I think with us being such a random group we help each other see things differently, thus improving our designs and ourselves as designers.

Christa Mueller said...

Like every other country, the U.S. goes through its waves of change in thought and design. After the war America was just settling into normal everyday life again so this "normal life" was the lifestyle most desired. This was reflected in their design. By the time post-modernism came around, Americans had had enough of being normal and were ready to move on to bigger and better things. It's interesting to look at times gone by and see how fully a group of people embraced the trends of the time. I think the most interesting periods to look at are those in which society "rebels" because they are basically rebelling against themselves, or at least what society has raised them to be. Then the youth of the period feels the urge to find truth and expression. Its fascinated to see the the capabilities of people when they push themselves. Whether it's considered genious or just plain mad, expression should always be embrased as a way of life for all of us; through thought, style, and design.

nicoLe said...

I am a strong believeer in expressionism. It is important for people to show their individuality, be it their dress, which is often the easiest, or forms of design or art. Art is a creative outlet. Something that is not simply a question with a correct answer. It is a way for poeple to convey their personal style, beliefs, etc. there is no doubt that pushing toward new ideas and opening our minds to this new expression was a step in the right direction. There is personality in all aspects of one's life right down to the ways he or she completes simple tasks. no two are the same, and that is a concept that should always be remembered.

Elizabeth Chaffin said...

It is evident, that during this movement individuality began to flourish more than it had in previous times. Not only was it expressed through the artists (designers) work, it also filtered through their dress, behavior, and ultimately, the culture as a whole.
Ofcourse, when society was introduced to these new concepts, it was probably a huge shock. For it takes times for ones to adjust to new ideas that they aren't used to. The initial opinion of the viewer with be to hate it or love it, but then that opinion can change as their exposed more and more to it. I feel as if the idea of the desginer to push to box is very crucial. Without their forward thinking, design, and the arts alike would never have movement anywhere, especially a step forward.
The introduction of the punk style was one of these new concepts, and I'm sure at that time it came at quite a shock. But not as much if this style would have been introduced earlier in the century. Since shortly before this, the era of pre spririted "hippies" was prevalent, it sort of set the tone for this kind of behavior and paved the way for the half-century and more ahead. The punk movement only pushed the factors of individuality further, past the point of experimentation and into the establishment of a certain idea. Not only Americans, but the world as a whole was starting to look past the criticism and worries of others opinions and live the life they want to live and not how it is planned for them, through their dress, actions, and everyday lives.

Katie Bluhm said...

I think that the movement toward new ideas was greatly needed. It is true that good design can be influenced from the past, but how many times? We all like those designs because we are comfortable with them. No matter how new they are, they're still the same. The new ideas are a great step in the histroy of modern design. While they may be a bit shocking for some people now, if they keep re-occuring they could be the next "norm." For example, in Disney World (and other places as well) the people mover ride takes you into Walt Disney's view of the future. The designs are very much more futuristic there than they actually are because we keep referring to the past for inspiration. Lets keep looking for new ideas so that we can keep advancing as a culture.

Chris Jones said...

Individualism is what makes a person unique. And if design was unique, it wouldn't be "design". The rebellion of the 60's was very crucial to expressing oneself. Today, speaking out is a little more accepted than back in the 60's. And even thought design somewhat "recycles" itself, there is still something new about it. Different shapes, lines, colors, forms, patterns, materials, and various other principles/elements of design are what make things fresh. It leads into artificial obsolescence, which has been proven to work time and time again. Design can only be constrained when you have certain requirements/parameters that need to be met. Otherwise, design should be as free as needed.

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