Reductionism as a Tool for Creative Exploration

Inoue, Shiro, Rodgers, Paul, Spencer, Nick and Tennant, Andy (2015) Reductionism as a Tool for Creative Exploration. In: 11th European Academy of Design Conference (EAD 11), 22nd - 24th April 2015, Paris, France.

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This paper reports on research that investigates how qualitative reduction of elements of an object might stimulate creativity amongst design practitioners. As humans, we have the ability to generate a complete image of an object as a representation even when parts of the three-dimensional object are missing, as long as appropriate visual clues are given. If reduced elements of an object describe the complete state of the object, element reduction might be utilised as a trigger for further creative imagination. In other words, designing the way to reduce elements of an object might be an opportunity to stimulate a design practitioner’s imagination. In order to explore the possibilities of reductionism in design, the authors conducted an experiment wherein design students were given varying levels of reduced information in a design representation and asked to complete the design using simple 3D materials. We observed the ways in which the design students approached the original image of an object using images whose quality were reduced in a variety of ways. The results indicate that even if the design students saw a visually-reduced image of an object, they develop their imagination relying on three factors: materiality, composition and prior-knowledge. The authors suggest that reducing these informative elements could possibly be the key to stimulating their imagination.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Design reductionism, imagination, creativity, communication
Subjects: C800 Psychology
K100 Architecture
W200 Design studies
W700 Crafts
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Design
Depositing User: Shiro Inoue
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2018 17:17
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2021 08:36

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