Form Follows Meaning, Meaning Follows Form: Surrendering the Innocence of Design

Format: Papers, RSD5, Topic: Sociotechnical Systems

Perin Ruttonsha

Creativity is a loaded concept, which we seem to assign unconditional merit. The danger in this arises when the allure and momentum of creative processes obscure underlying project agendas. If we consider designed images, products, and environments to be part of the broader cultural setting, then designers are accountable for the paradigms that we enable through our work. As systems-oriented designers, we cannot hide behind the agendas of our clients; rather, we must view each project as a powerful act of cultural meaning making, in which we share creative agency. In this paper, we will briefly examine how changes taking place within the field of design may ultimately influence what we construct as our experienced realities, and also how the positioning of creative practices within a socio-economic system can determine how they are employed in cultural production.

Citation Data

Author(s): OCTOBER 2016
Title: Form Follows Meaning, Meaning Follows Form: Surrendering the Innocence of Design
Published in: Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design
Article No.:
Symposium Dates:
First published: 20 September 2016
Last update:
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Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design (ISSN 2371-8404) are published annually by the Systemic Design Association, a non-profit scholarly association leading the research and practice of design for complex systems: 3803 Tønsberg, Norway (922 275 696).


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Author(s). (20##). Article title. Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design, RSD##. Article ##.

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