Seeing the reality that design is one of the basic elements that form modern human activities keeps my enjoyment and perseverence despite the evident angst attacks. It’s easy to be stressed out working as designer. The first symptom is light insomnia, continued by concentration disturbances as a result of physical and mental hyperactivity, added up by acnes destroying my handsomeness and sprue inflammations in the mouth making any food tastes like razor blade for the mouth. I am frequently surprised that while these things are happening to me, the number of people that aspire to be designers is increasing daily. In institutional level, design discipline is booming, forming a new kind of belief system beyond morality. Despite the relatively good income, being a designer contains its own misery. I hope I’m the only one feeling it!
“the stupidest thing I’ve ever done is doing something that I know was a mistake ”
For the eleven years I’ve worked, I feel that professional demands and obligations have taken me hostage in fulfilling one’s need of livelihood (popularly known as lifestyle today). Being a critical designer is just as hard as finding one soccer player that deserves to be playing in the English Premier League, out of 238 millions of Indonesian population. How can a discourse about design can grow without any condusive critics? How can a designer fulfill her/his professional challege and contribute significantly to the public through her/his profession? Would I be able to survive within the next ten years? Can I be free of this “miserable curse” so I can enjoy food and sleep soundly? These are my 5 strategies to face the condition;
1. Understand the situation and meaning
Enhancing skills to read and learn situations, in the context of learning more about production and distribution of meaning in my every incoming and outcoming messages. Just imagine what our response when we wake up in the morning, with tens of messages are demanding to be opened soon; spams, emails, messengers, chirps from social networks and other notifications! The plenty options before my eyes create the justification to my delay of toothbrush. Seeing those message attacks, we are given three systematical shallow attitude: to like, to ignore, or to delete. Then the other obligations I hate must be updated within second or even at that very moment, together with the information overload they bring with them. I am challenged to link every incoming message to position it against situations happening in personal and social level. We don’t have to be a genius like Robert Langdon in Da Vinci Code. But to proactively train our intuition to find connections between every incoming messages is my first test to understand this global world and its contemporaneity so that it would look like the new line written on the back of a Telkom employee’s vest, I just saw on this Friday prayer in the mosque: “The world is in your hand.” Finally it is something I can greatly understand.
- Learning to understand semiotics and implement it for certain contexts and situations are my basic strategy to keep my eternal Monalisa smile
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Just Be Honest
Even though it’s not in a severe stadium, I’m one of the people who suffers from the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), the symptom comes in a form of a very uncomfortable feeling when I see an asymetrical object, whatever that is! Whether it’s a shape or a room with unproportional geometry, what’s even worse is that if my left feet stumbles then I will automatically stumble my right feet purposely in the name of comfort. I do not know since when this symptom has occured but it’s still very clear in my mind that during childhood, if I took a stair starting by using my left feet than it ought to be ended with my right feet, and vice versa. Everything must be in balance and I am pretty tortured with this condition. So I apologize if the following writing below has the bias as the courtesy of the OCD syndrom I suffered from.
The current re-emergence of the issue about function vs. aesthetics has an implication on the understanding in the design and art field. An interstice becomes interesting because it results on one important point, namely harmony or rhythm. Within such condition, rhythm is an answer for interstice of visions and values to reach collective aim.
Starting from a concept of a state (democracy), up to a popular application design, a harmony is a choice that can make a lot of people “happy”. A rhythm is an ideal suggestion, full of challenge, not easy to realize. Is rhythm a solution?
Recent development of visual postmodernity is marked by the tendency to show the world as it is, and at the same time putting forward its capability to interpret new symbols in the form of thoughts, ideas, critics and demand for the expansion of the more intimate thinking space. It serves as a comfortable foundation to encourage new series of shifts against conventional knowledge, moving it out from its ideal boundary, and creating a new habitat that is more dynamic.
- A satire irony shown by droog design from the Netherlands; every product has a story! (First image) an outfit made out of arranging famous fashion brands’ labels, a visual critique against the values it created in its own world. (second image) who told you that a sandsack must be filled with sand? Hey, you know that it can also be filled with dry rubbish. Throw garbage in them everyday, we could be fitter and at the same time, the garbage sack can also serve as a stress release by us hitting the garbage we produce.
For me, ‘Rhythm’ in the halt of global imaging and complex society discourse, together with the shift of the boundaries for art and design field are better to be put aside. Now both could no longer be seen as black and white. The continuity of the discussion on design and art are no longer a priority because there are many other urgent matters that must be solved immediately, and it needs challenge to create a new, a more complex and persuasive rhythm.
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Is there any combination between art (idealism) and design (function)?
Who doesn’t know beautifull football a la Brazil?
Golden pairs of feet play as if guided by samba rhythm, entertaining and enchanting millions of eyes all over the world. As if they were artists, dancing for perfect ball deliveries, creating a game to make football lovers shiver. Individual instincts and intelligences are inter-connected, producing a sport masterpiece… Brazil is the place where football-artists-cum-world-legends are born.
But what is happening now? Modern industrial demand has changed football into a collosal drama commanding football players to care no longer about ‘aesthetics’, or even sportsmanship in sports. Everything is fair in winning a war. A bad team could score goals by awful ways in order to win. Even Brazilians change their pattern, chasing anything for a victory—including changing the ‘aesthetics’ of their strategy. The result, as we all knew: Brazil was defeated by France in the 2006 World Cup quarter finals! The public then frown; Tragedy… The Maestro has lost his identity.
Many questions arise amidst a deadline. Could Brazil win without loosing their idealism?
- Changing tactics from beautiful play (aesthetics) to offensive pattern for victorious results (the main ‘function’ of football) threw Brazil out of the 2006 World Cup.
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