Osaka 2008

Another Name for Design:
Words for creation

Themes / Papers

Theme 1: "Etymology of Design"
Though now used all over the world, the word "design" was a denizen, loan word, at least for most Asian people. In Asia, however, there are some historical equivalents for "design" which could be, if properly compared with some other European equivalents such as "disegno," "diseño," "dessin," or "gestaltung," interesting ideas for most design historians of the world. Papers on each culture's various words which were/are equivalent or comparable with "design" are most welcome.

Theme 2: "Design Museum: Another Art Museum or a New Museum"
Is design museum another fine art museum or a totally new kind of museum? How are design museums/collections different from art museums/collections? What are the major challenges of design museums today? This strand invites papers analyzing histories and present situations of design museums/collections of the world, particularly those of less-known collections in various parts of the world or nearly unknown aspects of established art and design museums.

Theme 3: "Permanent and Transient: Past, Present, and Future"
It deals with the history-writing of architecture and design and their separation in different categories, although we are dealing by and large with the designed, constructed man-made world where the built environment and artifacts form a totality, a seamless web. It also deals with various significances of the recent past and the near future in design history, in comparison with the history of art and architecture in traditional meanings and different time spans.

Theme 4: "Decolonizing Design History: Modern/Postmodern for the Periphery"
How have the Modern and Postmodern behaved in the 'peripheria' and peripheral design? It will include an insight of the practices, the cultural and social conditions, and also the changes in the historical discourse. Though an important theme, it has been given a very little attention.

Theme 5: "Natural and Manmade: Medical Design and some other Design Frontiers"
Are your eyeglasses a tool or a part of your body, or face? Is your laptop almost a part of your body or life? Are green mountains surrounding Japan's historical towns natural or artificial? Borders between natural and manmade are sometimes vague. However, many designs have been made in these borders. This is a forum for studies investigating these areas. It could be a good opportunity to exchange related ideas among design specialists of the world in Japan, a country where robot-technology is highly developed.

Theme 6: "Narrative Strategies in Design History"
Since Pevsner's Pioneers of Modern Design was published in 1936, the issue of narrative strategy has been significant in design history. This panel proposes to explore the question of narrativity in design history by inviting papers on subjects that range from historiography - studies of earlier design histories and their narrative strategies - to examples of histories that have departed from the earlier norms - histories that address issues of geographic inclusivity, gender, other genres such as craft, particular national identity, ecology, or additional themes that expand our understanding of how histories of design might be written.

A special theme proposed by the CSCD, the Center for the Study of Communication-Design, Osaka University (Papers are expected both from visual and verbal as well as any other new/old communication research fields).

Theme 7: "Communication Design in Education, Research, and Practice"
Design for communication, a major 20th-century design theme, is even more important in the 21st century when various novel tools, techniques, and systems are, on one hand, helping our rapid/ubiquitous/global communication and, on the other, not solving real difficulties, or even causing new problems. This strand invites papers dealing with both local and international issues of communication design.


Check the full list of papers in the program below: