The element of surprise

Welcome to the homepage of the winter semester 2010/11!

Abstract of the semester topic:

The element of surprise
Loved and hated, saint and whore – there is hardly any stylistic device used in visual communication that is so controversial as ornament. There are nevertheless many designers who believe that ornament does not fulfil any function, that it simply serves as decoration and is essentially redundant. But is this really the case? Would our design world be better off without ornament? If Naomi Klein were to write a book entitled No Ornament it would surely become a best-seller.

That notwithstanding, it is these very designers who need ornament, as ornament allows them to communicate to the world exactly what they believe in and to which design ideology they belong. Elevated to a moral principle, designers are now waging a war of faith for or against ornament. Public opinion is thus courted with slogans such as “form follows function”, “form is function”, “form follows emotion”, “fuck off form and function”. I would however personally remain reluctant to attach a moral dimension to design as, when it comes to commercial success, nearly all designers agree with Bertold Brecht: “Food comes first, then morals!”

If however we regard ornament in terms of its morphological structure, it looks completely different. It becomes clear that ornament is located somewhere between signs and writing. Like these, it consists of recurring elements and follows fundamental principles of order: sequencing, layering, arraying, distribution and dispersion have always played a role in the structuring of surfaces, bodies and materials.

But there is yet another common element: signs, writing and ornament can be judged neither purely by their usefulness nor solely by taste. It would not be doing justice to these three different means of communication simply to say that this sign, writing or ornament are ugly or beautiful, that we like it or do not like it. Ornament itself is obviously more than this: it is sexy and seductive, it awakens the attention and emotions of the viewer, all of which combine to make it so interesting as a means of design in advertising: It is the purpose of ornament to provide the functional purpose with something light, something sensual and even, perhaps, something frivolous.

Quick Tour | What you can find here:

In Quick Tour habe ich für Sie eine kleine Auswahl von den Arbeiten der Studierenden zusammengestellt. Diese Arbeiten sind im Sommersemester 2010 in dem von mir geleiteten Semesterprojekt "Ornament forever" entstanden.

Wenn Sie sich also lediglich einen schnellen Überblick, über die Arbeiten des Sommersemesters 2010 verschaffen wollten, sind Sie hier richtig.

Wenn Sie sich jedoch die einzelnen Arbeiten im Detail ansehen wollen, dann wählen Sie bitte im Menü "Studierenden auswählen". Sobald Sie einen Studierenden ausgewählt habe, erscheint dessen "Protfolio Gallery"

In der Portfolio Gallery des jeweilgen Studierenden können Sie sich dann über:
- seine Kurzprojekte
- sein Hauptprojekt
- die Semesterausstellung "Gäste Ospiti Guests" –GOG–

und vieles mehr detailliert informieren.

Atelier Life | What you can find here:

Here you can find some "impressions" of the semester's everyday life. In this way, Atelier Life allows you an exclusive sight behind.

Excursions | What you can find here:

In Exkursionen habe ich für Sie eine kleine Auswahl der Fotodokumentationen zusammengestellt, die die Studierenden bei ihren Exkursionen gemacht haben. Wenn Sie sich also nur einen schnellen Überblick über das bei unseren Exkursionen "Gesehene" verschaffen wollten, dann sind Sie hier richtig.

Wenn Sie sich jedoch die Fotodokumentationen der Studierenden im Detail ansehen wollen, dann wählen Sie im Menü "Studierenden auswählen" und anschliessend in dessen "Protfolio Gallery" den Menüpunkt Exkursionen.

End of the semester | Exam & Exhibition:

The final exams takes place on march 25, 2010.
The following exhibition "Gäste Ospiti Guests" –GOG– takes place on march 26-27, 2010.