NESHAN, The Iranian Graphic Design Magazine

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Neshan 23


Gazing into the Amsterdam Sky!

Pouya Ahmadi

The term, “Visual Research” is frequently used by researchers, artists and designers and has become a keyword within the field of Visual Communication. In his essay, “Research in Art and Design,” Christopher Fraying attempts to clarify this term by identifying three major types of research within the field of Art and Design: Research in Art and Design, Research through Art and Design, and Research for Art and Design Frayling describes “Research in Art and Design” as the most straightforward kind of research. It consists of research into the historic, aesthetic, theoretical, social, political and cultural influences influencing the field of Art and Design. “Research through Art and Design,” according to Frayling, is a type of research that involves studio work. Materials research, development work, and action research comprise its various processes.

“Research for Art and Design” is best described by Picasso as the gathering of different reference materials, as opposed to conducting proper (academic) research. The outcome of this type of investigation results mostly in an artifact. Thus, the result of the research is embodied in the final product. The following collection titled Sky-Catcher is the result of Luna Maurer’s visual research into the ever-changing conditions of the Amsterdam sky.
The sky has always played a significant role in the history of Dutch art. Capturing the elusive yet beautiful nature of the everchanging sky becomes abruptly possible through the Sky-Catcher installation of Luna Maurer and Jonathan Puckey in the Museum De Paviljoens. The poetic qualities of this everyday image reveal both its unexpected and unbridled mysteries. The installation contrasts its aesthetic qualities with statistical
information such as length of the day and night, displacement and direction of the clouds and the weather condition of the area, a phenomenon which is not conveyable through language, considering its copious details. Although the photographs taken from one day to the next can look extremely similar, paying close attention to their features reveals a pattern of change which obviously rejects the idea of resemblance.

Frayling, Christopher. “Research in Art and Design,” Royal College of Arts Research Papers. Volume 1, Number 1. London, 1993/4.
Sir Christopher John Frayling (born 25 December 1946) is a British educationalist and writer

Pouya Ahmadi

is a Chicago-based typographer and art director. He is an Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at the University of Illinois at Chicago—School of Design—and an editorial board member ​of Neshan magazine focusing on contemporary graphic design and the visual arts. Pouya's work has been showcased by It'sNiceThat, AIGA Eye on Design, People of Print, Grafik, Etapes,​ ​Type Directors Club, Print Magazine, and many others. Pouya holds a MA/MAS degree in Visual Communication from the Basel School of Design in Switzerland and an MFA in Graphic Design from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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