Thursday, February 5, 2015

Andrea Terranova, Understanding the Concept of“Slow” (1). The “Right” the “True” and the “Good” in Design Communication

Architectural design today is “self centered”:  the defining issues do not take into account the need to communicate the beauty, the resources the technology but above all, do not care about the users.  Designers please themselves with forms, technology, materials, energy wisdom but, generally, neglect the people. A “user centered” design is lacking:   The requirements of those who live in the designed spaces should be the main scope of design. In the following short comment I try to define the features of a “user centered design” process.

It is possible today to assume and propose criteria and practices that can bring back “right, true and good” to design communication.

In such a framework the “privilege of users” must be acknowledged, i.e. of those who receive the communication, as opposed to those who produce it. 

To respect the user we must know him.

The knowledge of the user rejects standard paradigms - good for any situation - since producer and user must stand on equal ground: which necessarily implies achieving a stronger communication capability.

In this way communication will retrieve its original meaning - still embedded in the etymology of the term - to put in common to share.

Communication as “sharing” implies an active, equal relationship between user and producer; a space between the two will be made available which does not belong to either one of them, a democratic space of dialogue.

A space of mutual loyalty to face the “right, the true, the good” implies four basic conditions: clarity, lightness, depth, respect.

Clarity in the communication mode, avoiding the unnecessary use of foreign terms, ambiguities, innuendos, unaccountable promises.

Lightness requires a minimal mental and environmental impact to process content and form.
Depth chastises banality, superficiality, haste and poor communication.

Respect of cultural, social, political and religious conventions and symbols.

(1) “Slow” as in the  the concept of Slow Culture, an idea and a practice proposed and implemented by Carlo Petrini (Slow Food Movement).

No comments:

Post a Comment