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Materiality in Codesign: interaction analysis of a design experiment with building blocks

Paschoalin, Larissa and Van Amstel, Frederick M.C. (2021). Materialidade no codesign: análise interacional de um experimento com blocos de montar (Codesign Materiality: interactional analysis of a building blocks experiment). Design e Tecnologia, 11(23).

Abstract: The term materiality is often used in Design to highlight the properties of artifacts that need to be taken into account in a project. In codesign, this perspective is not enough, as collaborative projects do not only consider the characteristics of the material, but also the characteristics of people and, mainly, how they relate to each other. In order to understand how materials mediate human relationships in codesign, we propose the concept of materiality relationships. This concept has the potential to reveal how material choices in building representations of future objects (metaobjects) interfere with the possibilities considered by a project (metaspace). Although there are heuristics for the choice of materials in the professional practice of codesign, there are few empirical studies that demonstrate how this production of metaspace from the metaobject takes place. Therefore, this research presents an experiment carried out with design students who used Lego® building blocks to create metaobjects in an audiovisual project. Metaobjects took on a form and function similar to the classic storyboard, however, manipulated in three-dimensions, being therefore called storyblocks in allusion to their material. Data collected during the experiment were submitted to interactional analysis, a qualitative method based on audiovisual recordings. The result of the analysis identified five materiality relationships between metaobject and metaspace: affordance, representation, power, temporality and spatiality. Comparing the metaspace produced during the experiment with the possibilities reached out by the project, we avail that the identified materiality relationships contributed to generate creative and viable possibilities for the audiovisual project.

Download the paper from the publisher (open access – Portuguese)

Categories: Journal publications.

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