Form und Funktion

Eine kritische Betrachtung zeitgenössischer Designästhetik

Julia-Constance Dissel 1 , 2
  • 1 Hochschule für Gestaltung Offenbach, Schlossstraße 31, 63065 Offenbach am Main, Cologne, Germany
  • 2 Hochschule Darmstadt, Institut für Designforschung, Eugen-Bracht-Weg 6, 64287, Darmstadt, Germany
Julia-Constance Dissel
  • Corresponding author
  • Hochschule für Gestaltung Offenbach, Schlossstraße 31, 63065 Offenbach am Main, Cologne, Germany
  • Hochschule Darmstadt, Institut für Designforschung, Eugen-Bracht-Weg 6, 64287, Darmstadt, Germany
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This essay deals with the terms “form” and “function” as well as their relationship insofar as they are still used in philosophical and design-theory discourse to determine the aesthetic dimension of designed artefacts, especially of everyday objects, and often also to distinguish them from objects of art. I discuss whether our common understanding of these terms and their relationship is an appropriate instrument for such determinations. What is up for discussion here are not only conceptions of functional beauty with regard to design methodology and the philosophical discourse on aesthetics, in which form and function become thematic, but also basic concepts of philosophical aesthetics itself. It is shown that the philosophical understanding of design aesthetics and the concepts of form and function are determined by profound preliminary decisions that restrict our access to the aesthetic dimension of designed artefacts, and a conceptualisation of an initial change in thinking is proposed.

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