RESPONSE05: empty form – empty space

Empty form and empty space is it different? What is empty form and space anyway? Why we define it empty if it still has value? This is our topic for discussion this week. For me I think people define it ‘empty’ because we interpret that it doesn’t function anything, not the space is empty.

‘Empty space’ is a space that was designed from function, so it hardly to use as other function. It limits people activities and interaction with the space because of the design that created for particularly one or more function. But ‘Empty form’ is the design that doesn’t use the function as the main factor because they want people to adaptable and fill the activities inside. Empty form is flexible, it can changes through time depends on people. One example of the empty space is the Crown hall by Mies van der Rohe, the building fail to be the empty form, which Mies wanted in the first place due to the materiality and finishing of the building limits the people from all activities. So in the end it become an empty space that no one use. Another successful example of empty form is The Jewish Memorial by Eisenman. It is the memorial monument to the murdered Jews but there are no visual sign that refer to death at all obviously, so people come and use this space in various ways. Then it became the flexible area that people can do anything that they can imagine without the limits. For me I think this kind of theory is very cool to use in our studio project, since it can interact with people and it can adaptive depends on people and time. It kind of we design the real space for human to use not only for one purpose but also to every purpose that they can figure out.


Memorial monument of Jewish at Berlin : it adaptable and flexible depends on people and time.


Crown Hall at IIT.


Response04: Hyper-reality and Borat

Hyper-reality is a situation when what reality and fiction are blended seamlessly. It is in between simulation and reality. This made me think about plastic surgery somehow, we want people to think that the artificial is real. We want others to see that it is nature. Some people are completely changed their face and body but no one knows that it is artificial, for example the K-pop singers they are all handsome with perfect shape of everything in their face by plastic surgery, but most of people (including me) still thought that it is nature. So what is reality? Are we living in the hyper-reality world?

In the class, we were given the example of this theory through the movie called “ Borat”. It was very funny and hilarious movie about simulation of Kazakh journalist travelling around USA to film recording the interview and interacting with Americans. Borat looks very real, he made everyone thought that he is actually come from Kazakhstan, even though he is not and no one even knows where Kazakhstan is exactly. The movie made us thinks that Kazakh people are all like Borat. He act very serious in everything, that’s made we laugh because we were all thinks that it is real which I believe it is not. American people in the film don’t questioning his fakeness because of Borat’s action was so realistic even though it is an awkward and funny. For me he is kind of olden countryside people that come into the city and act what he thinks is right.

 The hyper-reality of this movie made us questioned that is the Kazakh people are really like this? Why they’re no manners? Are Americans people were a part of the film or not? It is tried to make us believe that the unreal is real, just like the plastic surgery. 


Response03: De-sign

A sign is a representation of something or stand for something. For example, if I show you a photo of a dog and ask what it is? Everyone will answer that it is a dog, but actually it is not. It is a picture of dog, it just the representation of dog. It is a sign of dog that we read, so it’s made us think that it is a dog. But the sign also depends on human perception and translation, for example if I show you a picture of “chair” each people will answer differently. It can be a sofa, it can be a stool, it can be a bench, It can be anything that people can sit on. This is also a kind of sign too. Sign helps us understand what this object is for?


What’s about design (DE-SIGN) we, designers are also a part of sign too. We use sign to communicate with people, we use it in our designs. For example in construction lesson we have to study many of sign and symbol, then we use it to design and communicate with others. Even if the sign is not look like the actual object but we create them to everyone will understand in the same meaning without any different translation.


For me, I think design and translation is linked. Before we design anything, we must translate and designers can change that translation into our design. For example the “pentagon” can represent of a pentagon and a house, but if we add the thickness and extruded the pentagon, add some windows and doors. Is it still a sign of a house? Yes it still a sign, but it is a de-sign, the translation that can transformed a representation of something into new perspective.