CLASSICAL ELEMENTS: A METAPHOR TO IDENTIFY AND TIE MEANING AND EXPRESSION IN THE DESIGN PROCESS
Editor: Elies Dekoninck, Andrew Wodehouse, Chris Snider, Georgi Georgiev, Gaetano Cascini
Author: Roma Shobani Dias Wickramanayake, U.G.D. Weerasignhe
Section: POSTER 2: SHORT PRESENTATIONS
The paper discusses a studio design project that introduces the design language to first-year undergraduates via a series of active learning endeavours which revolves around metaphors of classical elements. The project eradicates: (1) Preconceived notions of material; (2) Inclination to use representational symbols; and (3) Technical ambiguity in presentation that disrupts the speedy and directional flow of the design process. In so doing, it ties meaning and expression. After describing the studio practice, the paper delves into the literature to retrieve its embedded theoretical framework. This brings to the surface the validity of using metaphors of classical elements as a universal device to identify, focus, articulate and thereby tie meaning and expression in design. The malleability of classical elements, gained through their liaison with image schemata, was found to facilitate this. The result is an emergence of a probable taxonomy of primary meanings and expressions that can be utilised across the arts.