People whom I have studied and worked with that have nurtured and inspired my standpoint in artistic research in the field of aesthetics:
My point of departure starts with my experience as a personal and
teacher’s assistant for Rowena Reed-Kostellow for two years in the late 1970s. During these years I became immersed in the coherent and structured approach toward understanding visual abstractions of form and space that she and her husband, Alexander Kostellow, developed at
Pratt Institute in New York City, USA.
Through their close collaborative working relationship, Reed and Kostellow created a comprehensive educational program for the foundation-year for all design students in the structure of visual relationships. They founded the first industrial design program that continued to build on this foundation (Greet 2002). These courses successively introduced different levels of visual complexity through concrete experiences in a variety of different two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) media. Their program offered a system of terms, concepts, principles, and procedures that supported perceptual and conceptual involvement of the active designer and artist under the different phases of their education
Reed and Kostellows’ program is outlined in Elements of Design by Gail Greet Hannah. It is a comprehensive book about Rowena Reeds life and teaching. The book is a great reference for anyone who is interested in gaining theoretical and practical insight 3-D abstracts.
Rune was one of Swedens first industrial designer who founded SVID Swedish Industrial Design Foundation and was engaged in educational questions through out his entire career.
I collaborated for more than fifteen years with industrial designer Rune Monö in a course that merged aesthetic abstractions of 3-D form/ space with product semiotics at the dept. of Industrial Design at Konstfack. His book Design for Product Understanding (1997) is one of the first books written about product semiotics based on experience from professional industrial designers practice.
Rune recognized the importance of aesthetic reasoning in the formgiving process and appriciated the way my knowledge in aesthetic abstractions complemented his knowledge in developing signs and symbols that products could convey.
I have continued to develop this course in partnership with Anna Thies who translated Monös’ key concepts to Swedish.
Over the past 10 years, Jonas Lundin and I have co-taught a new course that introduces a revised version of Monö's semiotics approach with new business methods and models applied in design projects that explore the creative boundaries in product development. Jonas is one of the founders and creative director for Love for Art and Business
I recommend Runes book - Design for Product Understanding.
We were fortunate to have Edith Ackermann join us in the NanoFormgiving project as an advisor and guest. Edith was a doctor of developmental psychology and an expert in technology-enhanced learning. She played an advisory role for the Exploratorium Learning Studio’s science, art, and technology program in San Franciso Usa. She came to Stockholm to take part in the first Aesthetic lab run at Konstfack, at Albanova and in Nano Fabrication Lab in 2007. Her serious playfulness was truly an inspiration for everyone in the project. She was especially engaged in the clay studies involving haptic shaping of emotional expression and the sensitizing lab exploring materials through remote & direct haptic feedback at Materialbiblioteket. Her insight concerning what research and innovation truly involves is articulated in her statement
Don’t guess what they want or do what they say:
co-create what they—and you—will love once it is there!
REFERENCES / INSPIRATION (selection)
A theologist known for his philosophy of dialogue. His book 'Der mensch und sein gebild' (translated by Pehr Sällström to Swedish) has a profound message concerning the commitment and relationship one needs to drive a gestalt process.