Style is the signal of a civilization historians can

This preview shows page 5 - 7 out of 10 pages.

Style is the signal of a civilization. Historians can date any artifact by its style, be it Egyptian, Grecian, Gothic, Renaissance, Colonial American or Art Nouveau. It is impossible for man to produce objects without reflecting the society of which he is a part and the moment in history when the product concept developed in his mind or was the creative outcome of a group sharing common attitudes and technical capacity. In this sense, everything produced by man has Style, but this can be debased and perverted when factors other than the achievement of excellence become the dominant motivating forces. In its pure sense, style is an aesthetic sense based on admiration for the direct attainment of a foreseen end, simply and without waste. Style in art, style in literature, style in science, style in logic, in practical execution have fundamentally the same aesthetic qualities, namely attainment and restraint with style the end is attained without side issues, without raising undesirable inflammations style is the ultimate morality of the mind. In his Presidential address to the Mathematical Association in 1916, A. N. Whitehead admonished his audience not to bother about your style, but solve your problems, justify the ways of God to man. The Designer and Manager Syndrome 69 We must attempt to relate this purist attitude to the design of industrial products as a whole, which seldom measure up to the Whitehead definition of style. The world is littered with products from the engineering industries disguising their mechanical efficiency (and sometimes inefficiency) with symbolic forms and decorative embellishment, and which have only a marginal relationship to engineering necessity and manufacture. These products are usually the outcome of aesthetic decisions having been made by managers or engineers who are unskilled in making such a judgment. Subjective aesthetic design problems are constantly posed in all design projects which allow for alternative solutions, as do all those which are not conceived at the frontiers of knowledge and mathematically determined. If there are five such decisions to be made during a design development program, and if each discloses ten alternative solutions, this can produce 100,000 design variations. If the number of decisions to be made and the possible alternatives increase, the number of possible design variants quickly reaches astronomical figures. The problem is compounded by the fact that some industrial products consciously need to serve symbolic as well as practical needs. This is exemplified by the automobile, but is equally apparent in the design of domestic appliances, office machinery and, to a lesser extent, in machine tools and agricultural equipment. The motoring correspondence of the British GUARDIAN, on 10 July 1972, described the Ford Capri 3000 E: The Ford Capri has a powerful looking bonnet, a racy tail and squashed up seating just like connoisseurs cars that
Image of page 5

Subscribe to view the full document.

make sacrifices for speed. The Capri s sacrifices are for style. The bonnet is only
Image of page 6
Image of page 7
  • Fall '19

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern

Ask Expert Tutors You can ask 0 bonus questions You can ask 0 questions (0 expire soon) You can ask 0 questions (will expire )
Answers in as fast as 15 minutes