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This article has been published in: Ocula 24, Quando è design / When is design / Quand c'est du design
author: Daniele Barbieri (Accademia di Belle Arti di Bologna (IT))
Thresholds and ideology of the project
language: italianpublication date: October 2020
abstract: No idea of design exists before William Morris, in the second half of the nineteenth century, came to develop it and put it into practice. Before the Industrial Revolution there were arts and crafts, and certainly there were also designing activities (architects, for example, have been doing it for a long time), but the project in a modern sense, the design, was born from the idea that society itself can be changed, and predictably, through a project. In his action, Morris designs not only an object, but an activity of social relevance through an object. Before him, objects belonged to the material culture of the time, and were part of it in a traditional way: if they came to transform it, it was not an expected consequence. What should be considered an object is a complex question, however much it can have to be extended to virtual and intangible objects. In any case, a book is an object, even if we make reference only to its verbal or visual content. But a theater play, is it? One of the thresholds that decide when the projectual operation that produces it is design or not, depends on the decision on what is and what is not an object. Another threshold is more strictly pertinent to the precision with which the social consequences of one's action are designed. From this point of view, the domain of art is, for example, completely foreign to that of design, even though there may be objects that fall under both.
citation information: Daniele Barbieri, Soglie e ideologia del progetto, "Ocula", vol.21, n.24, pp.127-133, October 2020. DOI: 10.12977/ocula2020-45
Ocula.it publishes articles and essays in semiotic research, with a particular eye on communication and culture; it is open to dialogue with other research fields and welcomes contributions from all the areas of the social and human sciences.