Originality Considerations For Postmodernist Design Cultural Studies Essay

It was founded during the mid 1900 ‘s: some interior decorators started to inquire themselves inquiries upon modernism. Postmodernism was brought about with cultural alteration. This alteration was largely influenced by the World War II, Russian constructivist and the great depression. Postmodernism was designed so as to pique viewing audiences, in order to dispute modernism.

Naturally, postmodernism has rejected the modern thought of originality and the thought of new, and replaced it with a construct of mentions and links. The attack to happening something new and original was discarded and substituted with combinations of elements from past and bing civilizations. Tearing down boundary lines between manners and assorted cultural elements was its characteristic. ( Perina 2006 )

In his article, Perina negotiations about rejecting the original attack and concentrating on past elements. Indeed we can hold that postmodernist design is a combination of past and present but to what extent have interior decorators put aside the original attack. This is a bit contradictory as each interior decorator has its ain manner and in a manner or non, the concluding touch reveals the attack of the interior decorator but is this concluding touch linked to originality?


For about a century, originality has been closely linked to creativeness. It has besides become the chief standards for the usage of creativeness in the development of merchandises. The willingness of the modern motion to set up new criterions and interruption with the past “ at any cost ” , has non merely generated new criterions but besides a new vocabulary in which “ new ” , “ original ” and “ advanced ” have been redefined. ( De Winter 2002 ) We can infer from the above statement that creativeness is a cardinal word sing originality. A new vocabulary has been generated therefore demoing that the reading has evolved during old ages and that originality has non a one-meaning definition.

“ What moves those of mastermind, what inspires their work is non new thoughts, but their compulsion with the thought that what has already been said is still non plenty. ” is a quotation mark from Eugene Delacroix ( 26 April 1798 to 13 August 1863 ) , a great Gallic romantic painter. She believes that inspiration taking to new thoughts was the fact that there were past designs that were uncomplete therefore seting frontward the procedure of re-designing with past designs as ushers or even challenges. We can therefore sketch the word “ mastermind ” in her quotation mark i.e. a interior decorator disputing past thoughts and polishing it in his ain manner with his ain touch will be considered as a “ mastermind ” if the result is outstanding, I mean better than the past 1. This quotation mark outlines a belief about originality to an extent and this will farther be discussed in our analysis.


It is the witting adoption of ocular thoughts from earlier beginnings, to recombine them in a harmonious whole. ( n.a, n.d ) This statement lays accent on an art manner in which characteristics are borrowed from other different manners. Indeed elements have been selected from these diverse manners and set together ensuing in a pure design with multiple features. This method of planing is a popular one in postmodernist design and can be thought as being plagiarism but depending on the mentality and issues behind the design, one can construe eclectic method in different ways.


Research conducted us that historicism is the deliberate usage or resurgence of historical manners in modern-day plants. ( Mifflin 2004 ) We can infer that this subject has a close nexus on historical case in points in whatever field of design. As postmodernism is a mixture of old and new, we can use this subject in the in writing field and illustrations will follow together with deep analysis to exemplify this.


Appropriation can be defined as utilizing person else ‘s art as portion of your ain. Appropriation is another important Postmodernist thought. Appropriation is an of import historical pattern design, in which the interior decorator uses a antecedently bing artefact and produces it in his ain manner. This consequences to new designs which seem to be familiar or “ du deja-vu ” . The idea being that if nil is original, so why this subject is so of import in postmodernist design?

Figure 1 – New manners after the 70’s Figure 2 – New manners after the 70 ‘s

This design is an uncontestable postmodern 1. The typography is non clear ; they are equivocal. The colorss are unusual and unfamiliar in design. We can see that it is against the modernist. The vivid colours show the protest associating to rational society.

In the early 1960 ‘s, interior decorators were interrupting down codifications of behaviour pass oning their protest against the Vietnam War. We can besides mention to the Hippies who had no regard therefore interrupting conventions and this became popular civilization. Peoples besides took portion in this protest following hippie manner ; it became like a sort of motion. As we observe the two designs, we can sketch eclectic method and the appropriation of the hippy manner. Interior designers used these sorts of designs as mentioned above to interrupt down the codifications i.e. this mentality was already settled earlier and this was their inspiration. They used that “ flooring ” manner already perceived as a protest against the War and combined it to the hippy manner to go through a message.

On making so, people become more socially cognizant. They become concern about the war, human rights and environment. ( n.a 2008 ) This statement reflects the alteration about society and people ‘s belief due to some development in postmodernist design and this alteration of mentality has been influenced by the creativeness of interior decorators and their ability to blend up thoughts to make a strong one therefore reflecting originality.

Figure 3 – Neville ‘s column pages for THE FACE, during March 1985

In the figure, there are different misprints and design. They are largely abstract signifiers of design. The misprint itself is interesting and shows postmodernism ‘s features. Neville Brody has put accent on the in writing design and the all right art. The misprint and image is combined together. During the 80 ‘s, Brody created in writing designs for The Face, a magazine and Arena an album screen. Neville Brody has been influenced largely by Russian constructivist creative persons such as Rodchenko and Dada.

Figure 4 – Black lovage Rodchenko – Constructivist Poster

Alexander Rodchenko is a in writing interior decorator who helped in the creative activity of constructivism and Russian design. He is a great constructivist and productivist creative person. He is ever introducing together with pigment, design and picture taking. We can mention to eclecticism in the postmodernist designs of Neville Brody as he used about the same manner as Rodchenko with his pigment, design and picture taking. On looking at the two designs, we can happen similar attacks: the usage of uncommon typography and ever a exposure nowadays in the illustration. This “ whole ” manner influenced Brody and was adopted by the latter.

Dada is a cultural motion founded in Switzerland during World War I. This group includes assorted signifiers of art. They neglected war through their art. Historicism can be outlined as Dadaism was a modern-day motion and Brody used this belief in his designs e.g. assorted signifiers of art as shown in his column pages for THE FACE.

What can be deduced is that, Brody wanted a new attack, something that was intend to astonish the populace. He wanted to travel against tradition and he inspired himself from designs of Rodchenko and Dada as mentioned above to make a new and advanced perceptual experience. Indeed his creative activity was necessarily pure influence but in a manner original.

Figure 5 – Wolfgang Weingart – Poster for an exhibition 1980

Weingart was a in writing interior decorator instructor and taught his pupils a alone position on “ Swiss Typography. ” Ultimately this spread Wolfgang ‘s typographic attack, New-Wave Typography, among the new coevals of interior decorators.

New-Wave typography questioned the formal manner text appeared on the page i.e. traveling against the usual format therefore being a postmodernist design. He discarded the indent for a paragraph, broad missive spacing appeared more and the accent of one word in a headline. The New-Wave strongly rejected manner and saw it more as an effort to spread out typographic communicating. His work and influence go on to this twenty-four hours through his ain attempts and the instructions of those he has one time taught. ( Kurtz 2009 )

This manner brought frontward would necessarily reflect onto the new coevals of interior decorators e.g. his pupils. They will consciously or unconsciously use appropriation or even eclectic method in their hereafter designs as Wolfgang Weingart shared his will to convey a new construct about typography and influenced his pupils in this procedure.

Figure 6 – Rudy Vanderland – Screen from Emigre Magazine 1989

Rudy Vanderland, publishing house of Emigre magazine in San Francisco exploited the Macintosh to better the ocular. He necessarily produced postmodernist designs and wanted to give the best of his machine. Indeed, in his design, we can sketch his usage of typography. Despite the fact holding computerized installations, he adopted the New-Wave typography manner as his screen has no indent and his rubrics have broad missive spacing. Vanderland use the New-Wave typography as an appropriation in his designs reflecting postmodern attacks. In add-on, due to the fact that his designs derive from a “ modern ” medium, I mean the Macintosh ; originality is being challenged here by this modern medium of planing.


Throughout the research conducted, originality in postmodernist design was analyzed and interpreted. Strong subjects in postmodernism, I mean eclectic method, appropriation and historicism of the selected design field were reviewed in the analysis. From that we can state that originality is necessarily linked to gustatory sensation. Despite the fact that postmodernism is the nexus between old and new, research and analysis revealed that what we create even it already exists is an advanced merchandise, a new one which is original because even if similar attacks can be outline, we tend to see the new as original. We can mention originality to an thought which is “ out of the box ” in malice of past influences or the usage of bing techniques. This reading of originality can therefore be considered in postmodernist design as interior decorators tried in a manner to interrupt the tendency of the past with new, advanced and original thoughts. This re-introduction of past thoughts and modern-day design ended in outstanding new constructs.

I think that this procedure of re-introduction is non merely in postmodernism but in all field of design as in a manner or non, we have been influenced, we are influenced and we will be influenced by yesteryear or bing designs. This ongoing procedure is necessary for the development of world as polishing the old or disused will ever take to the best original designs and artefacts.